If you have been around for over a semester and have had classes down in the basement in Building 6, you would have probably seen this little tiny room with a huge-as* poster plastered across its door which says “Radio Monash”.” – the door that so happens to be the entrance to a tiny little dungeon that houses a group of well, interesting announcers if I may say so? They play good music, they have got announcers ranting just about anything and they are very bubbly. If you have still no idea what I am talking about, well I did mention their name somewhere up there so you’d probably want to read again about who I am talking about.
Or not. Just keep reading. It’s somewhere down there too.
Radio Monash is a student brand radio that was founded a little while back in 2014 by an engineering student named Murad. Having been a part of a radio initiative back in Sri Lanka before that, he came into Monash with the idea of creating a platform that was somewhat similar. He proceeded to approach a few arts lecturers who advised him and for the initial part of the process, he even invested his own money in some of the things that were needed but the university did provide funds for most of the equipment. In 2015, things kicked off pretty well and they even had the opportunity of having renowned radio announcer Prem from Mix FM over to give a talk on how things are handled and done in a radio station. Radio Monash does not stream on a frequency but they are very much available on the internet and you guys can stream online at radiomonash.com while radiomonash.net is a similar student-led radio services that is based in Australia.
The club if I may say so, does not have weekly meetings like how a regular club would and it is divided into two different platforms that are used to reach out and engage with students – the student blog and the radio show. On the radio show particularly, there are different announcers present on different times of the day with each announcer having approximately two hours on each of their slot every week. According to Ling Jie, a representative from Radio Monash, the system has somewhat changed this year where the content of what is being discussed is now streamlined by a radio producer so that the diversity of the topics being discussed is increased. For example, it would be the radio aesthetics itself which really basically means that a mood or look for that certain hour can be represented by a certain set of playlist, like having Lana Del Rey’s songs played on a rainy evening while you lock yourself up in the library 5 days before the exams, all tucked in your sweater and your head banging against the wall (well that’s what I’d do at least). The streamlining is seen as important because it inadvertently allows the establishment of a platform that showcases diversity and to a certain extent, function as a representation of the students’ voice because not everyone would have the same opinion or the same set of interests.
A general rule that’s practiced in Radio Monash is that no personal views are allowed in regards to a certain topic and un-biasness should be maintained during discussions on air and this is imperative especially in exposing the different faucets of the student body and engaging in interviews and conversations with the presidents of different clubs. Speaking of which, they have also had outside artists over for interview, one of it being Alex TBH which was brought in sometime last year to talk about his musical career and just current updates.
On the blog that is also handled by Radio Monash, it just basically functions as an extension of the radio station, either supplementing to the content that is already on air or just as a connection as to when no one is on air (you can’t expect them to be in that tiny little dungeon all the time now can you?). For the blog, new writers are recruited and often different topics are covered – whether they are gaming-related articles, travel articles or even lifestyle, things that are just expressed by different kinds of people like the foreign students who have come here to study or even the locals. The student life in Monash is also put into perspective with different write-ups on the different clubs and more fascinating content like the behind-the-scenes at Radio Monash itself.
Does it get updated every day? Yes, apparently, and there is a schedule of new writers and old writers which sort of help in the organisation of the content and to ensure everything is in sync and relevant as much as possible. This includes the student interviews and student profiles and everything else that may be relevant to the Monash student setting, and this has been a monumental change for the blog this year – the whole streamlining and synching of content that is handled by the editor, Ling Jie. Some of the regulations the blog has for its writers include having them submit a content calendar and drafts of what they have written on before publishing them for editing and proofreading. When it comes to the content itself, there is no strict regulation imposed on that because everyone is ultimately entitled to your own opinion but there is a huge need to respect others when doing so. And the idea of inclusivity and giving everyone the equal opportunity to be a part of the content has strongly been encouraged among members of the team.
Being an organisation on campus that’s still trying to find its place among the student community, Radio Monash would definitely appreciate the collaboration and support from all seven thousand of us who are going to be on campus. They have approached different student sections on campus including the MUSA Editors and the newly-established MEWS Club and these are all important steps to allow Radio Monash to also be a voice of Monash, despite being in a tiny little dungeon with almost very limited or zero access to the sunlight. Both us the editors and Radio Monash hope that this year proves to be a better year for Malaysia’s only licenced university radio station to step it up a notch and find a place in the hearts of all the students with the incredible music they play and the weird yet amazing stuff they talk about! Cheers!
EXTRA INFO 101
- NOT EVERYONE GETS TO BE A RADIO ANNOUNCER SO THE ONES THEY HAVE NOW MUST BE PRETTY DAMN TALENTED!
- THERE IS NO SEXUAL TENSION BETWEEN THE MEMBERS AS OF NOW, “THANKFULLY” ( I MEAN WHO WOULD HAVE KNOWN RIGHT, BEING IN THAT LITTLE DUNGEON AND ALL)
- THEY HAVE NO PLANS TO LEAVE THE DUNGEON SO YEAH.
Article by Calvin Fernandez