Tag Archives: Ankitha Bharadwaj

Watching Talk Radio


Nationally syndicated talk show host Ben Ferguson at the XCel Center's Radio Row in St. Paul.

Nationally syndicated talk show host Ben Ferguson at the XCel Center

You can meet conservative talk radio host, Ben Ferguson, in audio form in our next post. But here you get to check him out in moving pictures. Ever wanted a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the making of conservative talk radio? That’s just what Youth Radio’s Ankitha Bharadwaj got–in a big way–during her visit to the RNC in St. Paul.

She tagged along with conservative talk radio personality, Ben Ferguson, who’s been broadcasting live all week from the RNC’s Radio Row. Ben got his start in radio before his 13th birthday. Now he’s nationally syndicated–and a force on and off the mic. Meeting Ben is shook some of Ankitha’s assumptions about a media landscape she’s been coming to know as an emerging young producer.

Convention is the New Nightclub

Listen to it it here!

Minneapolis-Saint Paul–Now before you get your baffled face on, let me explain.

When Youth Radio was preparing its RNC team, the first question they asked us was…

Youth Radio: “How old are you?”

Ankitha: “What? I’m 18, why do you ask?”

Youth Radio: “That’s good, because only journalists 18 and over are allowed into the RNC.”

Seems like a lame rule, doesn’t it? The obvious reason might be that only people over 18 are allowed to vote, so if there are die hard political junkie journalists who are on the younger end of the spectrum, they’re denied the chance to play a vital role in this year’s political process.

And much like this convention, many nightclubs across the country require partygoers to be at least 18 to enter. The resemblances don’t stop there. If you’ve ever been to a club, I’m sure you’ve had interesting experiences with the huge bouncer, who guards the club doors to make sure only the “worthy” are allowed in. Similarly, the Xcel Center in St. Paul was guarded by security officers, metal detectors, and scanners. Moreover, just as you’d need to have your name on a special list, the convention requires credentials for anyone to enter the Xcel Center, and getting those credentials is tricky business if you’re under 18.

Maybe it’s just me, but isn’t it a little weird that the RNC didn’t allow journalists under 18 when they’re trying so hard to appeal to the youth? And moreover, this just gives the democrats more power, since the DNC happily welcomed underage reporters.

We spoke with folks from YPress, a media organization similar to Youth Radio headquartered in Indianapolis. They were frustrated when the RNC denied them any credentials, forcing YPress to look elsewhere for RNC coverage. And the worst thing is that they’ve covered both the DNC and the RNC for years now, so it’s a little confusing why they weren’t credentialed this time around. But the YPress team got some pretty awesome stories; they interviewed Fred Thomson, Mike Huckabee, and a few other cool cats. So take that RNC.

Youth Radio Runs Into Amy Goodman

Minneapolis-St. Paul — Youth Radio reporter Ankitha Bharadwaj has been hanging out at the “Radio Row” area of the Republican National Convention. Here she takes us on a tour of Radio Row:

And a little later…Ankitha ran into Democracy Now‘s Amy Goodman, who was about to be interviewed on Air American Radio. Amy was detained yesterday after she tried to gather information on the arrest of two of her colleagues at a protest at the RNC. Youth Radio’s Ankitha Bharadwaj went up to her and Amy gladly took our microphone (the black one she is holding) to give us the story as she talked to Air America. She even gave Youth Radio a shout out! Listen to it here!

And here is a good chunk of her interview with Air America, where Amy Goodman describes the circumstances of her arrest:

Conventions Coverage Continues as Youth Radio Ramps Up for St. Paul


RNCpromo

Originally uploaded by Youth Radio

OAKLAND_Youth Radio’s RNC coverage crew is busy getting ready for the convention in St. Paul. We’re developing a series of stories that will take us in and outside the XCel Center, always–of course–with a focus on unexpected youth perspectives. One of our stories will be a profile of 24-year-old conservative advocate, Princella Smith, who broke into national politics four years ago, when she won an MTV essay contest, Stand Up and Holla. Youth Radio reporter Denise Tejada, pictured here, talked to Princella last week. Check out this sneak peek into Princella’s story–and stay tuned for Youth Radio’s marathon coverage of the RNC starting September 1st.