The Student Radio Association has today written to Professor Michael Stirling, Vice-Chancellor at the University of Birmingham, in support of the way the University's station, BurnFM.com handled an on-air incident in October.
Yesterday, several media organisations drew attention to an incident where the network's presenters are alleged to have made untrue comments about fellow student, Kristina O'Connor, daughter of television personality, Des O'Connor. The story originally appeared in the Daily Mail in November.
In a letter, the Association urges the University not to take action against the station or the students involved in the broadcast. SRA Chairman Mark Farrington said: “Student radio exists as a training ground for professional radio talent. It offers a sandbox environment where would-be presenters can experiment and make mistakes. We accept that not all mistakes can be made without repercussion, but we must be wary of creating an atmosphere in which people are deterred from participating creatively in student radio. We believe that BurnFM.com took swift and appropriate action to rectify the situation by removing the presenters involved from the station’s roster.”
Articles appearing online and in yesterday’s press grossly exaggerate the scale of the broadcast, which BurnFM.com state was only heard online, and by a small number of students; far from the ‘thousands of listeners across the West Midlands’ as claimed by a news story appearing on one newspaper's website.