More content for more listeners
On June 5, Workers Independent News (WIN) announced content and distribution innovations that will both strengthen the organization’s service to working people and bring their stories to a wider audience.
WIN Executive Producer Frank Emspak says that newly adopted digital technology will allow the organization to not only produce and distribute more stories, but also gain diverse listeners through multiple platforms in specifically targeted locations.
“We’re strengthening the synergy between broadcast and digital. We’re rethinking how we engage with listeners. Now, if we do a story for an affiliate, we’ll not only send that story to the station for free—to be used alone or as part of our newscast—but also to other media outlets and organizations who might be interested. We target the news digitally and attribute that story to the local station. The community station…then gets a significant boost. We’re using every method we can to reach people and to attribute stories properly so people understand the relationships.”
WIN’s new CEO Daniel Guerra Jr., explains, “We’ve adopted a local first strategy and are engineering that strategy with social media. So many people today get their information through Facebook and other social sites. It is important that our website be optimized for mobile, that it be integrated with social media and that users can read and hear content. We’re being aggressive about moving our audio to online, about mobile availability and about putting our products in iTunes for download.”
The organization also intends to make a daily podcast available through Audioport. Some of these programs will address national issues ranging from discussions on net neutrality to an exclusive interview with Randi Weingarten on the state of public education.
Many of these programs will be produced in partnership with local groups—thus far in New York, Los Angeles, and Kansas City—who will contribute long-running podcasts focused on their home cities. In Portland, Oregon, a member of the carpenter’s union work with peers to fight fascism and racism. In New York, a worker at a telephone company is on strike and offers a historical analysis, from Haymarket to the current day, explaining the principles that direct their action.
Emspak adds that “community radio is particularly well-placed for this programming. Audioport allows us to have collaborative relationships with people all over the country. Listeners will hear directly the real voices of the community, and collectively listeners will get a clear and unfiltered sense of what’s going on across the nation.” Emspak hopes that this service will allow stations access to more varied content than would otherwise be available.
WIN is planning two more program series; one about the entirety of health care, and the other on financial literacy. “Many people have no idea how the economy works,” says Emspak. “We’re going to provide a service that any community radio station can use; a series of two minute pieces on financial literacy.”
As the country’s only news network focused exclusively on labor, WIN has been the voice of working people and families for over 15 years. Its syndicated national news programming is already heard on at least 150 stations in 36 states.
For an overview of the organization’s work, check out its newly designed website, where you can sample text reporting, listen to the Daily Labor Report. Guerra adds, “Stay tuned, you may see some video.”