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View Graham Attwell

RadioActive: Practicing What We Preach

Slides from the presentation are available here.

In their interactive presentation, Graham Attwell and Cristina Costa decided they wanted to engage participants with a DIY approach, taking advantage of the ISDT attendees’ experience with broadcasting and journalism to produce that day’s edition of Sounds of the Bazaar. The plan was to go live with an Internet radio show that would begin in just two hours.

The idea was to take a DIY approach, Costa said. Attwell added that all the equipment that would be used was cheap and easily transportable anywhere.

Costa explained that Attwell uses such a DIY approach when working with children in east London, engaging them differently and giving them a new set of skills.

The two also noted how important it is to keep in mind an alternative pedagogy when trying to teach digital literacy. Instead of telling people what they should know, allow communities to determine what is important to them, Attwell said. For example, he said, if someone is interested in cage fighting, then produce the radio programs from a gym. They’ll be learning new and different skills, but the curriculum will be driven by their interests.

It also is important, Costa said, for academics to approach the public differently, and look for ways to add value to their research in terms of impacting society. For example, academics should look for ways to use technology to extend their work and make it more accessible to and beneficial for the public.

So, in an effort to give participants a hands-on, DIY radio experience, and with just two hours and 10 minutes until go-time, Attwell and Costa led the group in coming up with potential segment topics for that evening’s edition of Sounds of the Bazaar, streaming live at

Narrowing down a list of more than a dozen ideas by voting on what interested them most, participants decided to produce six segments of three to four minutes. The first was a tribute to Gary Chapman and discussion of what digital transformation means. The second was a look at culture, and the third about children and digital media. Next came a “Vox Pops” segment with three participants speaking about their experiences in ISDT. Following this came a segment on social media and social movements, with a segment on Internet freedom concluding the radio program.