For those who don't know, the BBC have decided to put up for review their running of Radio 6, a champion of indie, rock, and alternative music. They essentially want to drop it because it doesn't fit in with it's core values, which they seem to want to consist of bland pop. The review is answerable here with Facebook protest group having nearly 200,000 members. Here are my words.
Often heard is the principle to focus services and cut away excess spending in areas that are covered adequately by other commercial enterprises.
I'm trying to work out where closing Radio 6 Music fits into this apart from just being an easy target. Just the statement above proves how little is known about this area of music. Calling it 'pop' is laughable, about the same as calling a work of Beethoven 'baroque'.
So, lets look at the concept of removing it because there are plenty of other commercial stations doing it. There is no equivalent of Radio 6 anywhere in the UK. Radio 1 and 2 are dedicated to chart type music, which has a very small crossover, thanks to encouraging avenues like Radio 6 getting some of the more adventurous music into the main scene. All other commercial stations follow the same pattern as Radio 1 and 2.
Let's look at the cost per listener. Radio 6 is lower than Radio 3. Funnily enough there are plenty of UK stations doing the same thing as Radio 3, so surely Radio 3 would be more in line with removal under these proposals. Would the review remove Radio 3?
So, what does Radio 6 do? It's a centre for those who value modern music without succumbing to the lowest common denominator of the 'popular' culture. It's an eclectic, artistic interest in modern music, much in the same way Radio 3 does for older music forms.
One thing has come about at the same time. Larger numbers of people have tuned into this kind of music listening. The number of music events around this kind of music is engaging more and more people. To stop Radio 6 now would cut off the oxygen of growth for this group. Radio 6 is encouraging and inspiring culture, one of your core principles.