Veteran TWR missionary Bill Damick has written a timely and informative essay titled “The Future Is Here” on the significance of leveraging radio and other relevant media to help reach the world for Christ. The following is an excerpt from this essay.
Ever since television began wide-scale broadcasts in the 1950s, people have been sounding the death-knell of radio broadcasting. While radio has gone through significant metamorphosis in the last 50-plus years, it can hardly be considered to be in its last days. More and more countries are liberalizing their media ownership and permitting the construction of small community radio stations. Engineers are developing new digital broadcasting methods that will cover larger areas with less power consumption. Electronics companies are combining radio receivers with mobile phones. The key question today isn’t “is radio appropriate?” but rather “where is radio appropriate and in what form?”
The majority of the world’s population already lives in its cities. Much of the projected urban growth in the next few decades will be in rapidly expanding slums in the developing world. Although this will undoubtedly open newer media types to a growing number of people, it also seems likely that increasing poverty in slums will make media solutions for slum dwellers the least expensive ones possible. For the present, radio appears likely to be the major solution – local radio with local voices. TWR is well-known for its long-distance broadcasts from high-powered stations, which are particularly effective for broadcasts into rural areas and countries with limited access. However, TWR has also moved creatively into providing content for local outlets – nearly two thousand of them worldwide – many of them in or near population centers. This trend will continue, as a growing number of small Christian radio stations look for quality programming to attract and hold audiences.
Click here to download the full version of "The Future Is Here" booklet.