Student radio station Oxide is resuming broadcasting again after OUSU has lent a pre-owned computer to replace the station’s faulty Mac. After the hard-drive of the Mac Oxide broadcast from failed, the station spent the last two weeks transferring the radio software over to the OUSU-provided, new one.
In a statement, Oxide said “we are most grateful for the support of OUSU” and “are delighted to be able to continue broadcasting”. They added that they would “like to thank everybody involved with Oxide for their patience” and “lots of exciting things” were being planned for this year.
However, one senior “inside source” in Oxide said they thought the recent computer failure was symptomatic of “a mixture of the poor structure of the station, and chronic underfunding from OUSU”.
They continued: “Oxide is nowhere near professional enough to measure up against the other student-led radio stations around the country.”
Our source suggested that the Station Manager and Programme Controller “require far too much time commitment from the students that carry out these roles” and should be made full-time roles rather than student roles. They also revealed that a lack of investment meant the software used was “more primitive than Spotify”.
OUSU President, Louis Trup, commented: “Discussions are still to be had with the Oxide team about what they want and need for the studio, which will then be taken from their budget.”
For the 2014/2015 year, Oxide’s budget stands at £306, an increase of £6 from the 2013/2014 budget.
Nancy Hatcher, Station Manager for Oxide, denied that the software was more basic than Spotify, but stated “as with most student-run societies, funding is an issue,” and highlighted “the neglect with which the station has been treated over the past few years”. However, she stressed that work is “now being put in to improve it” and “it is a process that does not happen overnight”.
Hatcher also added that the “structural system of Oxide is currently under review” and that “student radio should be fun”, giving “the opportunity to every member of the student body to be involved with broadcast journalism”. One presenter feels similarly, saying: “Oxide is an excellent way for students to get creative and can only get better with more investment and more people tuning in.”