Good news on community radio

4 SEPTEMBER 2006

A Federal Government survey released last week shows the Charles Sturt University radio news service received top ratings from audiences across Australia.

A Federal Government survey released last week shows the Charles Sturt University (CSU) radio news service received top ratings from audiences across Australia.
 
National Radio News (NRN), produced by CSU students and staff, currently reaches 1.2 million radio listeners each week, an increase of six per cent since 2004.
 
The independent news service, which is distributed to 93 community radio stations across Australia includes a live newsroom staffed by experienced journalists and broadcast journalism students from CSU’s School of Communication.
 
“These excellent listening figures highlight the high quality of NRN and its news gathering service, including the students who investigate and produce the stories,” said NRN manager Peter Hetherington.
 
“Around 5 million people listen to community radio in Australia, so CSU students are gaining real industry experience with real audiences across Australia while still studying.”
 
The listening audience, according to survey figures compiled by McNair Ingenuity for the Federal Government, were quite diverse. Younger listeners aged 15 to 39 years made up nearly half of the listeners for NRN news, while the remaining audience was equally divided between those aged 40 to 55 years and over 55 years.
 
NRN also reached people with various backgrounds: 23 per cent of listeners were professionals, executives or farm owners, another 19 per cent were in other office jobs, while a further 15 per cent were “blue collar” workers.
 
Community radio subscribes to NRN to receive regular broadcasts for their station. NRN now has subscriber stations in every Australian state and territory except the Northern Territory. The majority of subscriber stations are in regional areas, but there is a growing number in major metropolitan areas.
 
The listening figures from McNair Ingenuity were released by Federal Communication Minister Helen Coonan on 25 August.

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