Characteristics of Radio

  1. Radio Makes Pictures

Radio is a sightless or a viewless medium. In radio, either the performer or listener cannot see each other. Therefore it is called blind medium. Since it is a blind or sightless medium, the performer as well as listener has to creatively imagine each other. So that as soon as voice comes out of the loudspeaker, the listener attempts to visualize what he hears and to create in the mind’s eye the owner of the voice.

Unlike TV, where the pictures are limited by the size of the screen, radio’s picture can be of any size. The artistically integrated creation supported by appropriate sound effect and right music virtually brought any situation to listeners.

  1. Radio speaks to individual/ an intimate medium

Unlike TV, where viewer is observing something coming out of the box over there, the sight and sound of radio are created within us, and can have greater impact and involvement. To the listener, it seems that as if the broadcaster is broadcasting for each listener individually.

  1. Radio speaks to millions/ A Mass Medium

It is a much cheaper and easily available medium. It cost much less to set up a radio station as compared to a TV station. The very term broadcasting indicates a wide scattering of the output covering every home, village, town, city and country within the range of transmitter. Also it is totally free to air.

  1. The speed of radio/ medium of immediacy

It can report the event almost instantly, as they are happenings. So it is the medium of the “here and now”. Even for TV, it is more difficult to take the camera immediately to events as they are happening. But the radio is enormously flexible medium and is often at its best in the totally immediate live situation.

  1. Radio is a mobile medium

Radio can accompany and entertain anywhere. One can have it at home, at picnic resort, while driving or at any other occasion.

  1. Radio has no boundaries

Radio signals has no terristorial limits. Its signal can clear mountain barriers and may cross ocean deeps.

  1. The simplicity of radio

For program production radio is much cheaper and simpler medium. Its basic unit comprises just one person with tape recorder. For the broadcaster radio’s comparative simplicity means a flexibility in its scheduling. Programs can be shifted, dropped even at a short notice.

  1. Simple language and reach of Illiterates

Especially in developing countries, with its language being simple, live and direct, it can reach illiterate and semi-literate people.

  1. The Transient nature of radio

Broadcasting imposes a strict discipline of having to be there at the right time. The transitory nature also mean, besides hearing, listener also understand it at the time of broadcast.

  1. Radio as background

Radio is less demanding medium in that it permits to do other things also at the same time.

  1. Radio is selective

Radio is a linear medium. The selection process takes place in the studio and the listener is presented with a single thread of material.

  1. Radio lacks space

Radio has boundation of time and lack of space. It can allow less space to advertisement and personal announcements than paper.

  1. The personality of radio

The great advantage of aural medium over print lies in the sound of human voice. A voice is capable of conveying much more than reporter’s speech.

  1. Radio teaches

As a medium of education it excels with concept as well as facts. However it lacks the ability to demonstrate and show (charts & graphs), but proved helpful for villagers.

  1. Radio has music

The range of wide variety of music relaxes and stimulates including pleasure, excitement, or curiosity.

  1. Radio can surprise

In the radio listeners are always presented with something new and unexpected. So it has a element of surprise.

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