Community broadcasting is guided by adherence to
simple but powerful principles:
Community broadcasting promotes active volunteer participation in media operations, administration and production rather than passive consumption of media. The sector provides skills and training that ensure access to the media for all parts of the community.
Community broadcasting fosters innovation, creativity and diversity of content in its programming. In both structure and output community media reflects Australia’s immense cultural diversity and by doing so supports greater tolerance, understanding and social cohesion.
Community media has an expanding local role. While commercial media and the ABC are reducing local content and increasing networking, community stations have become the voice of local communities.
Community broadcasting stations are owned and operated by not-for-profit groups. Each licensed group has open membership and democratic decision-making practices. All stations must adhere to a code of practice that embodies the sector’s philosophy and secures their independence.
The community radio sector of the Australian broadcasting system is non-commercial, non-profit and is supported and financed primarily through listener subscriptions (memberships), community fundraising ventures, donations, limited government subsidies, business sponsorship and the efforts of volunteers.
Stations depend on the community in the service area for management effort, financial and technical support and program input.