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article imageOp-Ed: Online radio key to media's neutrality, says host Judyth Piazza Special

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By Ernest Dempsey     Jan 30, 2011 in Internet
Vero Beach - Judyth Piazza, the host of the popular radio show The American Perspective, tells why we need online media today in order to make a positive difference in the world of communication.
With the growth of online media in number and popularity, the Internet has become the platform for many popular radio shows. Judyth Piazza’s The American Perspectiveis an example of how cyber media can commit to promoting positive work and get people connected to inspiring as well as helpful voices. It was in fact Judyth Piazza’s own voice in particular that attracted me to listen to her show and there I found not only Judyth’s voice as sweet but also the show in its entirety as extraordinary. I was very much interested in why, among thousands of radio shows, we would have The American Perspective. The answer is provided by Judyth Piazza in the following interview with me.
Ernest: Hello Judyth! Thank you for joining me to talk about your work on radio! Tell us a little about yourself and how you became interested in hosting The American Perspective?
Judyth: In 2003/04, I was writing for the Sebastian Sun, a local Newspaper in Sebastian, Florida. During the same time in 2004/05, Vero Beach was hit by a series of hurricanes within an 8-week period. During the hurricanes, the city of Vero Beach, Florida was without electricity and other essential services. One radio station was broadcasting to let the community know what was going on. They were looking for volunteers, so instead of sitting around, doing nothing, we decided to drive to the station to see if we could help. Me and my photographer immediately started checking on people’s houses, taking photos, and making calls into the station live to let everyone know which gas stations were open, who had ice, etc. Being the only source of entertainment, a lot of people had a chance to hear me. I became known as the “Hurricane Girl”.
During this time, I also met the news director for the local TV station, WWCI TV 10, and he had mentioned that he heard me on the radio and asked me if I would like to try some TV news work. Of course I said “yes”. At first, I was filing stories and short on-air segments, and then they asked me if I would like to try the anchor spot. I did that for a while but I still had the radio bug, so I grabbed my photographer and producer and we decided to build a website, TheSOP to serve as a platform for showcasing the radio show as well as report global news. I did seven web radio shows and then we made a demo and started pitching it to local radio stations. A couple of stations liked it and the show aired on several stations from Ft. Pierce to Melbourne, FL. After being on the radio for a while, the website started to become more popular and I saw that I had a much larger listening audience than I could ever have on air, so that is where the inspiration came from for The SOP Radio Network.
The SOP Radio Network is known for its original programming that blends a mix of music, mentoring, and magic. In the line-up following The American Perspective, we have Djelloul Marbrook`s “Hot Copy” which is among the Network`s hottest destinations for advice and insight into the field of journalism. If you need a personal trainer, check into John Basedow`s “Fitness Tips” and you`ll find inspiration and motivation mixed with sanity and support. Kenny R’s “Musical Oasis” is a themed array of music, and just for fun, we have “Crazy World” now where you can escape to a world of irresistible nonsense.
Ernest: Before asking more, I certainly would like to know whether you have been conscious of your voice, which I personally find attractive and kind of musical. Did it have any role in leading you to become a radio show host?
Judyth: Radio just came natural to me. I never noticed my voice before radio and I definitely don’t have any professional training as far as my voice goes. I get a lot of feedback about the show and you are right, people tend to like my voice. My producer, LEON says when he puts the show together, he uses filters that create a hypnotic tempo that is pleasing to listeners and it results in a nice rhythmic flow to the show.
Ernest: How long have you been doing the show and what kinds of topics and interviewees have you covered on the show all this time?
Judyth: I have been doing The American Perspective Radio Program for 5 years. I have interviewed over 4,000 people about what it takes to succeed. I have had the opportunity to speak to some of the most influential people in the world from the guy next door to book authors, musicians, astronauts, fighter pilots, poets, Generals, race car drivers, actors, and champion athletes. The target audience is anyone who has the desire to improve their life; however our primary demographic is 35–55 years old.
Ernest: Who have been some of your most inspiring and famous guests so far?
Judyth: One of my most inspiring guests was Sean Stephenson. Sean has faced tremendous physical challenges and has overcome all of them. It is difficult for me to say who is the most famous because I have interviewed a lot of famous people but I feel blessed to have had the chance to meet the daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Yolanda King in 2007 before she died. It made me feel as if I was a part of history. Other inspirational people that come to mind right away are Maya Angelou, Zig Ziglar, Dean Koontz, and Mark Victor Hansen. I could go on forever and ever.
Ernest: Sure thing! And who is welcome to be a guest on the show?
Judyth: My door is always open to anyone who has a positive message or who has a dream or a goal that I could help them achieve.
Ernest: Based on your experience with The American Perspective, what role do you see for online radio shows in today’s information industry?
Judyth: I think that online media in general is very important. If for no other reason, it helps keep politicians as well as the mainstream media honest. I particularly like online radio because it allows me to reach a much larger multinational audience that I could never reach through traditional broadcasting.
Ernest: Okay Judy, what are some of the things that you don’t like about other mainstream media channels, things you would rather steer away from on your show?
Judyth: I am really disappointed in the current trend of news opinion rather than straight news. Now, it almost feels like FOX news and CNN are political parties rather than news outlets.
Ernest: So are political personalities not welcome to debate or promote their political goals?
Judyth: All are welcome… I personally try to stay neutral at all times, but my guests are free to speak their mind.
Ernest: Students have a key role in running the TheSOP where The American Perspective episodes are also archived. How do students generally do on the site and do they have any contribution in The American Perspective?
Judyth: The SOP was established in August of 2005. However, we did on-air radio campaigns with The American Perspective Radio Program 6 months prior to launching The SOP. The SOP and The American Perspective were both started by students; however they have both evolved. The SOP now has writers, authors, and broadcasters around the world. SOP traditionally stands for Standard Operating Procedure. When I named this business venture the SOP, it was meant as an oxymoron, since I would not be conducting business as usual. Another reason is that in the beginning, I knew I would not be able to pay writer; so the idea of The Student Operated Press made sense.
Last, but not the least, I knew that we would eventually be commercially successful and look to abandon the "student" label without losing our presence and recognition on the worldwide web; hence our new name, The SOP.
I have assembled a team of highly talented and respected professionals from various fields to mentor the SOP writers as well as myself; after all you can never get too much mentoring. Some of the mentors that I have brought together are novelist and former newspaper editor, Djelloul Marbrook, business experts, John Palumbo, Philip Tirone, and Joel Block, publisher, Chase Von, fitness expert, John Basedow, as well as many others.
Ernest: Would you like to share with my readers any feedback on your show?
Judyth: Here is some of the feedback that I have received over the years.
Ernest: What is your vision regarding the show? Where do you see it in the coming few years?
Judyth: I would like for the show to be syndicated on XM or Sirius Radio in the near future. I would also like to encourage college radio stations to air it as well. The show has a positive message and does not follow the traditional talk format where the host does the majority of the talking. The American Perspective is the complete opposite. We encourage our guests to speak and elaborate as much as they want to get their message heard.
Ernest: Well, I really would like to be on your show someday. Thank you so much for taking time to take this interview! Wishing The American Perspective great success in the year ahead of us!
Judyth: Thanks Ernest, I look forward to having you as a guest on The American Perspective.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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