World Day of Radio: February 13

Today, February 13th, 2014, marks the Second Annual UN Observance Day of the World Day of Radio.


James Clerk Maxwell
, the father of wireless communication, experimented with what was then called “wireless telegraphy”- later known as Radio- in the 1830s. It would not be until about 50 years later that an intentional transmission would be conducted by David Edward Hughes.

In the years leading up to the 20th Century, the Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi would build the first commercially successful wireless telegraphy system that was first put into use for military and marine communications.

At the beginning of the 20th Century, Radio stations began popping up mainly in Europe and the United States. These broadcasts would propel humankind into a new age: The Age of Technology.

The Age of Technology:
In 1968, terror was propagated by a Radio broadcast when WKBW, a Radio station out of Grand Island, New York, broadcasted a faux news broadcast of a Martian invasion, inspired by George Orwell’s “War of the Worlds”. Mass panic broke out as local newspapers, police and even the Canadian Army heard the news as genuine. The Canadian Army even began dispatching its Armed Forces to the US-Canadian Border.

Radio then began to diversify with the creation of FM Radio, Television and eventually, the mobile phone- both of which often still use Radio!

The impact of Radio on society:
Radio has also led to a dramatic increase in communications, special bulletins and even emergency broadcasts, connecting us to the societies we live in and allow us to have a more open access to current information and events. According to an article in AdAge, radio was on a severe decline until now where they are forecasting a growth in radio listeners.


The gateway to the millennium: birth of satellite radio:
Another magnificent upgrade to the standard radio has been Satellite Radio that has also boomed since its invention in the 90s. Since 2005, Bridge Ratings ( suggests that Satellite Radio users have more that quintupled in their numbers.


Questions for the reader:

What does this mean for today’s world?

How do you think increasing communications helps us as a global society?

How do you think this affects individuals worldwide who do not have access to communication other than word of mouth?

Feel free to leave comments in the comments section below.

For more information on the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development, please visit our Website at:

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