Wednesday, May 28, 2008
So far, I have been using Dutch radio station FunX as an example of clever urban programming, involving the young people of Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Utrecht, Eindhoven and The Hague. They use the Dutch language to link people together of mixed ethnic origin, celebrating their heritage. But I think there is a huge danger they will now lose their focus if they go ahead with their ambition to become a national terrestrial radio network in the Netherlands. FunX has just written to the Second Chamber of the Dutch parliament saying their success deserves national FM coverage. This may be an attempt to revive a discussion of three years back when the Board of Governors of the Public Broadcasters in Holland contemplated replacing the classical music programming of Radio 4 with the output of FunX. That's a bit like suggesting BBC Radio 3 should be available only on cable, web-stream or satellite, and that BBC Asian Network get their frequencies instead. Frankly, I would put the 2 million Euro or so they get from the Dutch public broadcasting pot into making more edgy programming (perhaps combining forces with talents in BNN radio) rather than hoping for bigger numbers by including the provinces.