CEO Chris Wilson speaks to the National Religious Broadcasters Research Symposium today about the public opinion of Christians on several key issues, and the demographic challenges facing radio ministries.
Exploring Public Opinion of Three Key Issues for Radio Ministries: Fairness Doctrine, Hate Crimes Legislation, and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act
While there are a number of issues critical to the survival and functioning of radio ministries, and in many cases Christian ministries overall, Christians are not necessarily aware of or engaged on these issues. We examined public opinion polling data on three issues particularly important to radio ministries: employment non-discrimination in hiring by religious organizations, hate crimes, and the so-called “fairness doctrine.”
The fundamental finding of this analysis is that Christians’ opinions on these issues are not what we would expect them to be if they understood the threat that federal action on each of the issues might pose to a variety of Christian organizations including radio ministries. As we will discuss in more detail later in this analysis, radio ministries and others who help shape the opinion of Christians on these issues may need to do more to educate them about the importance of these issues and the implications of them for ministry organization….
Demographic Challenges Facing Radio Ministries
Our data suggests that radio ministries (and all ministries) are facing a dual challenge posed by a short-term drop in support due to the economic recession and a longer-term danger due to donor demographics. Of the two, we consider the longer-term threat to be the more critical. This threat is compounded because the same lack of success in acquiring new, younger donors that is driving the demographic trend is also forcing ministries to place additional stress on existing donors….