۱. Please describe your publication/program? What are you known for? Who are your contributors? What do you focus on in your issues/episodes?
We are a twenty-four hour Farsi language radio station that has been operating since 1997. To this day, we are the only radio station that specializes in news, events, as well as the artistic and cultural activities of the Iranian community in the GTA. We are known for our vast coverage of various spheres of Iranian heritage and culture; our up to date international and domestic news releases; and our innovative approach to our interaction with the Iranians in our community. Our team is comprised of honoured and dedicated individuals from all walks of life.
۲. Who is the audience for your program? Has this demographic changed? If yes, how?
Our primary target audience is the Iranian community residing within the GTA. We have programs that appeal to audiences of all ages, as well as, programs that portray different mindsets and ways of thinking. We take on an inclusive approach as we have programs that cater to several different religions, races and cultures. Recently, however, our demographic has changed as we have made the effort to incorporate more programs that are geared towards the younger generation. These programs include but are not limited to entertainment shows ranging from music, arts, pop culture, live DJs and live contests.
۳. In your opinion what are the roles and responsibilities of ethnic media? How does ethnic media represent immigrant communities? How does ethnic media represent certain nationalities (i.e. the people of Iran)?
The role of ethnic media is to help immigrants with their integration into mainstream society but at the same time allowing them to have a strong hold on their roots and where they are from. Although ethnic media strives to help with their integration, it does not force immigrants to assimilate to the Canadian way of living. Our radio program allows for Iranians to connect with their homeland while continuing their lives in the GTA.
۴. What if any is the relationship between ethnic media and mainstream Canadian society? Does ethnic media relate to mainstream media? Does ethnic media have a relationship with the municipal, provincial and federal governments?
As explained in the previous question, there is a distinct connection between ethnic media and that of mainstream Canadian society. In particular, Radio Seda-ye Iran allots a certain amount of its air time to governmental updates, news, and elections in the local and national government. We have a responsibility to inform and update our listeners on the political events that take place in Canada. However, we do this by remaining unbiased. In particular, we devote a great deal of our air time to candidates who are running for office or various Ministers or MPs who have the desire to convey a message. For example, during the Iranian New Year, many prominent political figures from all levels come on the program to express their greetings to our Iranian listeners.
۵. How do you see the future of ethnic media in Canada? Will we continue to have multi-lingual programs that cater to various ethnic and linguistic communities?
The future of ethnic media is one that will certainly flourish; especially in a country like Canada. With our multicultural background and our acceptance of all ethnicities it would be difficult to view the future of this media in any other way. As well, it is important to note that ethnic media helps listeners to integrate into mainstream society and not assimilate. Therefore, their roles and responsibilities will only increase in the future given the bright future of immigration in Canada. Additionally, it is crucial that the younger generation is directly involved with ethnic media in order to ensure the best results in the future.