Trip Report #4 – Convention pt. 2

Another long day of  sessions… but no less inspiring.


Eric’s Highlights

Lucas and I went to many of the same sessions with a couple differences. We learned a lot about managing people and meetings as well as some more marketing tips (I learned 100 PR ideas in about 50 minutes). But the most stand out things that I have learned didn’t come from the speakers but from our peers themselves. Many of the sessions would start with a speaker and end up being open forums in which us college broadcasters openly shared ideas and concerns.

In one of these sessions Lucas and I had learned that many stations are going through or have been through a whole lot of the same things that WIDB has gone through. In fact one of the people we heard from quoted almost word for word our history (carrier current, low power FM, lightning strikes, being shot down by administration, streaming), that was really inspiring. It was also interesting to hear from the stations who are going through tough times, like a smaller station who just went streaming and lost their entire staff because their general manager disappeared so now the new GM has to start from scratch.

After hearing all these stories and sitting through all these sessions the main thing that I have learned is to trust in myself and those who I have at the station. We may be learning as we go on but we also are very well off and just need to be confident in what we do. The grass is not always greener, but there is always room to grow.

Lucas’s Highlights

I gotta say, the highlight for me today was finding out how many people are in the same position as us. There is a definite difference between those stations that have their terrestrial signals, and those of us without them.

Frankly, WIDB has it better than we thought we did! But it’s inspiring to hear the stories of students running their stations out of literal closets and backrooms who still have so much hope and remain dedicated, excited broadcasters. So many of us are building our stations out of scrounged leftovers and tiny budgets, it’s just a relief to see we’re not alone. We’ve even met several other stations using the same automation system as us, Radiologik, which is pretty rare, considering how uncommon Macs are in the “professional” broadcast setups. I must’ve talked about my silence alarm, Vidarr,  10 times over the last two days, and it’s so exciting to hear my colleagues say, “Wow, we could really use that!”  I’m missing a lot of business cards now.

The National Student Media Convention has been unbelievably worthwhile. We’ve met some great people, learned some valuable information, and shared some really great stories. Frankly, it should be a requirement that we have a few people at this convention every year. We better have lots next year, it’s in Chicago, that’s like our back yard! I’m counting on y’all at WIDB on this one.