More people are tuning into community radio stations like STEREO 974 for the local content and specialised music programs they offer.

The 2008 Community Radio National Listener Survey was released today and has revealed a loyal following of Australians who tune into their local community radio station each month.

The survey found 57 per cent of Australians aged 15 years and above listen to community radio each month, an increase of 10 per cent in the last two years.

In the MELBOURNE AREA 26% of people are listening to our community radio stations.

Deborah Welch, President of the Community Broadcasting Authority of Australia (CBAA) said the results are a testament to the high standard of community radio in Australia and the important role it plays in the Australian media landscape.

“Community radio attracts a huge number of listeners for the specialist music programs, local news and information and the desire to support Australian artists.

“There is a great local flavour to community radio, and you are bound to hear something you won’t hear anywhere else on Australian radio,” said Ms Welch.

Why people listen to community radio:

  • Specialist music programs (55%)
  • Local information and news (53%)
  • They play Australian music and support local artists (46%)
  • The announcers sound like ordinary people (43%)

“Listeners love local radio because the content is locally relevant, and the stations are more likely to respond to the communities within which they serve,” said Rod Boyd General Manager of STEREO 974.

“Community radio provides a great public service, and also gives budding local radio enthusiasts and journalists a chance to get a start in an industry that is unlike any other.”

Despite growth in listenership, STEREO 974 and many other community radio stations are substantially under-funded, inhibiting further growth.

“Funding has stagnated for community radio for the last 14 years, and its time the Government recognised the important role STEREO 974 plays in the local community,” said Ms Welch.