Current affairs programme is in fact news programme which gives some details about one or more particular news items. In this type there are many formats, as in other radio programmes. As news is a dry subject, its format should keep on changing in order to maintain listener’s interest. Current affairs programmes have different subjects than other programmes. These are the news programmes to explain and provide details and also to comment over a particular event. Such programmes are broadcast to explain significance, the consequences and the effect of one or more news on people.
There is an explosion of information, every single minute and an hour there is a new information to communicate. In the third world where democratic traditions and institutions are not as deep-rooted as in the South, there is a growing need to bring transparency. Needless to say that transparency lays bare all secrets. While communicating on electronic media, objectivity should be hallmark of current affairs.
In our news bulletins there is much room for improvement, especially in Radio News bulletins. To give more credibility to our news bulletins, correspondent’s voice or eye-witness account be incorporated.
In the third world where literacy rate is abysmally low, the importance of current affairs is not only to inform but educate as well. With the news item, a social & cultural background is needed to bring home the desired information. In a country like Pakistan where cultural pluralism like most of the countries, is not homogeneous, broadcast of current affairs assume relative importance. Ethenic feelings, political polarization, and religious intolerance are some of the plague spots. There are growing fears that ethnicity under certain circumstances has a propensity to become ‘totalizing’ displacing other loyalities and obligations to become the sole basis of identity. Then the likelihood of ethnic conflict increases, because people’s identities and alliances take on a single, rather than a multiple focus, leading to a polarization of social division.
Current affairs programme are of two types, studio programme and field productions. Detail is as under :-
These are the programmes prepared in the studios. According to the neecVof current affairs programmes we can prepare the following formats.
a) TALKS: It is a format of current affairs as well as other radio programmes. This format presents informations on particular subject of common interest and utility with the personal experiences of the talker. Talks on radio ;ue classified in different categories depending on the nature of the subject such as : Short/pep talks, religious talks, anniversaries/festivals talks, ta ks related to any current event (General Talks).
b) DISCUSSION: This is the format of each type of programmes in which more than two participants take part to discuss about some subject. Participants disseminate some information about some topic having more than one point of view of sharp contrast or opposing nature. It presents varying opinions on a specific subject and scope. Discussion-programme may be’ of three types:- Panel discussion, forum discussion, and audience participated discussion.
c) DOCUMENTARY: French word documentary means a “Travel picture”. This word has been taken in by radio from films and deals with sound pictures supported with oral evidence on the subjects it is dealing with. Thus in documentary sound is used to tell the story, the sound of the human voice,
the sound of human activity and the sound of music. It contains the real words of real persons and the sound of the events.
d) INTERVIEWS:,A radio interview is a story developed through questions and answers to find out the truth about an event, issue subject/topic or personality. Interviews are usually recorded before being broadcast, but some interviews are broadcast live. Three participant^ are required for interview, the interviewer, interviewee and the listeners.
e) INTEGRATED NEWS BROADCAST: These are the news bulletins prepared in the news section for broadcast. In such news bulletins reports of the reporters on the spot are integrated. These reports are used as a source for cross-checking the news coming from the various news agencies. These reports also help to present the objectivity of the broadcasting organisation concerned.
f) NEWS REEL: News reel, actually is a combination of outdoor broadcast (OB’s) and studio recording and comprises some important news of the week or days. It presents depth of the news in focus. Background can be obtained from printed or media sources or the persons involved. It is preferable to include interviews or impressions.
g) CURRENT AFFAIRS MAGAZINE: It is a package programme depending upon many formats. In this type of programme informations about different events, personalities or development programmes are given.
h) RADIO NEWS CONFERENCE: It is just like an ordinary press conference taken place by a personality and published in the newspapers. Radio news conference may be about the performance of any institution, any event or any political, social, economical or literary subject.
i) NEWS COMMENTARY: This is a detailed information about one particular item (news) of general interest. Personal view point of writer is also included. . V.
Field productions are called outside broadcasts, (OB’s). It is a broadcast different from studio. It means broadcast of an event originating from a point remote from the studio booths. These broadcasts are arranged at the time of some important event. It could be done with simple reporting as news but it never attracts the listeners because the situation and atmosphere is not presented in reporting. These are microphones that record all these and carries to the listeners. OB’s may be as under:-
a) RUNNING COMMENTARIES: These are the field productions or OB’s depending upon the eye witness accounts, both live or recorded. Such as sports coverage’s.
b) RADIO REPORTS: It is a report about any event which could be highlighted by giving it different aspects. It may be about social or development sectors. It emphasizes event itself and the impact that we expect on the environment or social life.
ACTUALITY INSERTS: These are based on the recording of events functions and impressions of the people involved in the certain events.