Mobile Phones as Participatory Radio: Developing Hmong Mass Communication in the Diaspora

Lori Kido Lopez


In this article, I explore the development of Hmong teleconference radio: a thriving form of mass communication for Hmong in the diaspora that uses conference call software to provide listeners with a wide array of radio-like programming accessed through their mobile phones. It is based on a qualitative analysis of Hmong media that assesses the history of Hmong media development in the United States, the content and formatting of teleconference radio programs, and the perspectives of those who participate in creating and consuming media. In exploring the development of a new form of participatory radio, this article expands our understanding of diasporic media practices to include communities that must overcome the challenge of using limited resources in their efforts reach geographically dispersed audiences.


mobile media, diaspora, participatory radio, Hmong

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