The View from The Niagara Guide

General observations and musings on how we can make Niagara a better place.

Niagara Community Radio

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, October 12, 2017

Radio Microphone

I'm probably jumping the gun a bit, but I'm excited. Coming soon: an online radio station that is all about Niagara, for Niagara, and by Niagara. It's Niagara Community Radio, and it's going to be a reality in the near future.

The purpose of the station is to provide a platform for Niagara voices. That's it. Sounds vague, I know, but I think it has potential to be an important platform for small business owners, artists, artisans, politicians, pundits and anyone else who cares enough to share their story.

Niagara Community Radio is a not-for-profit venture that is offering an online radio platform to anyone who wants to host a show about pretty much any topic. Want to talk about Niagara business? Great. How about environmental issues facing Niagara? Go for it. Want to talk about your local hockey team's performance? Sure thing. Want to showcase local musicians? Right on.

From what I understand, there will be shows on at a set time, and because it's the internet, those shows will be available to be streamed on demand. It's kind of like a podcast, but you don't have to download the shows themselves. They'll just be streamed to you via your computer or through a smartphone app (iPhone and Android versions available).

Oh - and another thing - won't be any advertisements. Just announcements for Niagara community events for local charities, non-profits, service clubs and the like. This platform is being provided free of charge to Niagara for the time being.

Coming soon. It's so cool! Watch - or listen - for our first show on Niagara Community Radio before then end of 2017!

Calling Bullshit

Mark Kawabe - Monday, October 02, 2017

Manure Spreader

"Oh look. Someone's provided a quote / graphic / statistic that reinforces my worldview. I'll just re-post and share it. <click>"

Welcome to the world of social media, where something doesn't have to be true in order for it to be valuable. Only one problem: when you post stuff that's not true, you undermine your own credibility. If you're going to be spreading the news, it pays in the long run to spread the truth.

I know full well that humans aren't rational creatures. We don't respond nearly as well to facts as we do to fictions that support our values and beliefs. Stories are important, but if you're in the conversion business, it helps when they're based on truths instead of what you erroneously believe to be true.

What I mean by "the conversion business" is that you're actively trying to change people's beliefs and behaviours. Some folks (like my good friend Dennis O'Neill) don't think this is possible without addressing a person's underlying values, but that's another discussion for another day. Whatever your talking point is, you'll do better in the long run by telling stories that are based on truths.

Lies undermine your credibility. Sharing stuff that's false makes you appear lazy, both in thinking and in deeds. If you are truly convinced your position is correct, then you should be able to defend it based on facts, not fiction. You have the power of the internet at your fingertips. Taking a few minutes to do some basic fact checking should give you even more confidence that you've got things right. Using false information to bolster your position leaves you vulnerable.

This is true whether you're debating immigration policy or trying to convince a potential customer to use your service. While you might sound good or make the sale in the short term, creating change that lasts depends on whether your story withstands scrutiny. You reap what you sow, so choose your words - and your clicks - carefully.


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