Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Masonic Podcasts: Freemasonry on the Air

Masonic Podcasts: Freemasonry on the Air by W:.Tim Bryce, PM, MPS, timb001@phmainstreet.com, Palm Harbor, Florida, USA
"A Foot Soldier for Freemasonry"

Back in 2001 I created my "Masonic Update" Internet broadcast which was delivered in RealPlayer, MS Media Player, and MP3 formats. This was a weekly broadcast that lasted 15-20 minutes and included news, announcements, a calendar of events, book reports, and an occasional interview. I believe this was the first such Masonic broadcast of its kind. Originally, I produced it just for my Masonic District in Pinellas County. But interest in it rapidly grew and the program quickly evolved to a Zone basis (Tampa Bay), to the State level, and finally to an international basis. I learned a lot during this process and kept refining the broadcast each week as my audience grew. Unfortunately, this came to a screeching halt when I was censored by the Grand Master of Florida in December 2005.

Another Brother also picked up on the idea and created a separate Masonic related broadcast, "Radio Free Masonry," by Bro. Stephen Dafoe of Alberta, Canada. This was a slick program that discussed Masonic issues. Unfortunately, this show also went under earlier this year.

Fortunately, three other broadcasts have emerged to pick up where "Masonic Update" and "Radio Free Masonry" left off:

The first is "The Master's Mix" by W:. Robert Jump, PM in Oregon. This is a weekly downloadable podcast (MP3) featuring editorials, interviews, news, and some excellent music to entertain Brothers.

Next, is the "Masonic Pride Project" which is a monthly podcast (MP3) by Bro. Errol Hinton of Vermont. This too includes editorials, news, interviews, and Masonic education.

"X Oriente" is an upbeat program featuring commentaries and news pertaining to Freemasonry, and hosted by Eric Diamond.

All three broadcasts are more ambitious and better produced than their predecessors. They are both slick and contemporary, making them particularly attractive to younger Masons who are Internet-savvy. These shows are thought provoking and are excellent for promoting the fraternity. They should also be welcomed by those Brothers who haven't been able to sit in Lodge for a while (perhaps due to illness). But understand this, these shows are all produced by individuals and are independent of Grand Lodges. As such, the producers are smart enough not to pretend to represent any Grand Jurisdiction and, as such, are open to general dialog.

Frankly, I'm surprised there are not more such broadcasts, particularly at the Grand Lodge level where it would be an excellent means to communicate and promote activities in the jurisdiction. Its simple and very cost effective in terms of conveying a message. But if Grand Lodges do not understand the power of the Internet, as I suspect most do not, this will never happen.

In the meantime, it is important we support independent efforts such as those from Bros. Jump, Hinton, and Diamond.

Keep the Faith.

NOTE: As with all of my Masonic articles herein, please feel free to reuse them in Masonic publications or re-post them on Masonic web sites (except Florida). When doing so, please add the following:

Article reprinted with permission of the author and "FreeMason Information"

— Bro. Tim Bryce

1 comment:

  1. I thought the Grand Lodge had to abide by it's Constitution and if it's not in there it's up to the lodges, if it's not in the lodge by-laws, it's up to the individual Masons.

    It's a bit silly the Grand Lodges feel the need to control someone's personal podcast as long as the brother(s) are not revealing the "secrets" of Freemasonry.

    It's the old guard I imagine. What they should do is a search for "Freemasonry" and see how much false info is out there being consumed and taken as truth. The Internet information space is a vacuum and if true Masonic talk does not fill the space then lies, misinformation and conspiracy theory will fill it's space....


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