It's been nearly 20 years since radio has had to shift into crisis mode. The Corona Virus or COVID-19 has arrived and broadcasters find themselves having to re-write rules, redo formats, get more information sourced, while dealing with a staff that have children coming home and everyone faced with the challenge of working from home. In this episode, I spoke about the importance of working from home, and get down to the nitty gritty of what it means to be a broadcaster during a pandemic.
I have had to listen to radio talk about how important the medium is in an emergency. That the medium is important, and in an emergency, critical. We are never truly prepared for this sort of thing. The company I worked for in 2009 had us go through some extensive H1N1 training in case we all got sick. The scenarios included mock infections, staff elimination and working from home. It was really good practice. Ten years later, the technology is more advanced and working from home is easier than ever.
When all this is said and done, (and no one really knows when that is) Broadcasters are not going to be lumped in with the Doctors, nurses, scientists and hospital support stuff who are on the front lines. You are the messenger and the news and information you have to deliver is not always good. We live in an era of social media with a world leader who calls the virus a hoax, and provides information that runs counter to the doctors and the nurses. That makes your job harder. You've already brought your work home, plunked a makeshift studio into the den and have to perform with kids in the house. You are indeed heroes for doing this and you certainly have my admiration.
Register for the Jacobs Media Tech Survey which was supposed to be revealed March 26 at the World Wide Radio Summit. The summit is postponed but the data lives!