|A comparative study of Radio Metro and Radio Zulu|
|Written by Marcia Zamambo Mkize|
A comparative study of Radio Metro, a metropolitan service and Radio Zulu, an ethnic cultural service.
By Marcia Zamambo Mkize (1992)
This study is a critique of the South African Broadcasting Corporation broadcasting policy with regard to the establishment of radio stations along ethnic classifications for the African population in particular.South African society is characterised by the diversity of languages spoken by its inhabitants and diverse ethnic divisions. For the mass communicator such as the South African Broadcasting Corporation, this presents special problems in meeting the needs of such a diversity.The study aims at making a close comparison between ethnic language/cultural broadcasting services for black Africans and the newly established metropolitan radio station,namely Radio Metro. Radio Metro broadcasts in English for the largely black audience and all its staff are Black.
There are nine ethnic-language radio stations for the African population, within the S.A.B.C.- butthis study will focus mainly on Radio Zulu.The ethnic language services are basically founded on similar ideological principles but serve different ethnic groups in their 1anguages.Radio Zulu has a fairly wide geographic area over which it broadcasts (refer to Map on Radio Zulu Geographic coverage) and enjoys the largest audience, amongst the ethnic language stations. Black services were known as Radio Bantu, but are now referred to as the Nguni-Sotho group. The essay looks at the South African Broadcasting Corporation's cultural policy as applied on the grounds of fundamental cultural differences such as language, demographic structures, experiences and expectations in the interests of black Africans.There has however, been much debate about the validity and operational realities of a contrary arrangement.