[ISEA2012] Paper: Esteban García – Radio Chigüiro: Making Community Radio


Radio Chigüiro was a social platform for the distribution of Lafayette, Indiana’s “glocal” culture. It operated as a community radio, exploring youth practices associated with parties, live music shows, and free radio workshops by using a web site as a medium for contact, production, and participation.

Radio Chigüiro emerged from the idea of making a participative radio station. The first reference is Bertolt Brecht’s essay from 1932, The Radio as an Apparatus for Communication (Brecht 1964:51). In the early development of radio culture and broadcast, he envisioned using radio as a participatory medium. He proposed it as a bi-directional medium as opposed to one-way broadcast, a model in which the listener could participate and potentially become a broadcaster himself. Much of the research on radio revolved around topics like media activism because some media activist tactics were studied and later adopted by Radio Chigüiro. Even though Radio Chigüiro had no activist content on its programs, the use of free wireless networks and the airwaves without official permission or mass media channels to promote non-mass-media content are methods that have been used by media activist groups in the past. This project explored the use of technology for community purposes. I approached this Idea by experimenting with it and doing it myself, networking with a local group of people. I was motivated to work on this project because I wanted to understand my ethical disagreement with copyright and the current model of culture production and distribution. When I think of the current context of culture production and distribution, the first thing that comes to my mind is a pop record that is specially designed for mass consumption.

  • Esteban García, Purdue University, US

Full text (PDF) p. 71-76