BBC Report on World Listening Day by David Sillito

2013 World Listening Day

You are invited to participate in the 2013 World Listening Day. World Listening Day has been happening annually on July 18, since 2010, and the fourth annual World Listening Day happens on Thursday, July 18. The purposes of World Listening Day are:

  • to celebrate the practice of listening as it relates to the world around us, environmental awareness, and acoustic ecology;
  • to raise awareness about issues related to the World Soundscape Project, World Forum for Acoustic Ecology, World Listening Project, and individual and group efforts to creatively explore phonography;
  • and to design and implement educational initiatives which explore these concepts and practices.

World Listening Day is co-organized by the World Listening Project (WLP) and the Midwest Society for Acoustic Ecology (MSAE). July 18 was chosen as the date because it is the birthday of the Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer, who is celebrating his 80th birthday this year. Schafer is one of the founders of the Acoustic Ecology movement; the World Soundscape Project, which Schafer founded in 1971, is an important organization which has inspired a lot of activity in this field. The culmination of the World Soundscape Project’s pioneering research into the sound environment is described in his seminal book, The Tuning of the World. Published in 1977, it gained international attention and defined many new terms and concepts in sound and ecology popularly used to this day.

WLP and MSAE invite you to participate in the 2013 World Listening Day, which will happen on Thursday, July 18. Other WLD events will be happening during the week of July 14th-20th. Here are several possibilities. You can—

  • organize a soundwalk or a listening party when people play field recordings.
  • organize a performance event that involves field recordings and other artistic expressions that explore our soundscape and how we can listen to our sonic environment.
  • participate in a private / solitary way, by paying attention to your soundscape.
  • facilitate an educational event that relates to acoustic ecology, field recordings, or a similar topic.
  • Contact organizations that are participating in World Listening Day, to see if you can get involved that way.

The level of participation that happened during the first several World Listening Days was wonderful, and we look forward to the kind of participation we’ll be having this year. If you would like to participate in the 2013 World Listening Day, please email worldlistening@gmail.com, and be sure to include “World Listening Day” in the subject line.  You could also download the 2013 World Listening Day participation form here. Thanks!

Download Korean WLD participation form(한글버전 WLD 지원서), Korean WLD Invitation letter(한글버전 WLD 초대장).

2012 World Listening Day

The 2012 World Listening Day happens on Wednesday, July 18th. The purposes of World Listening Day are:

  • to celebrate different ways we can focus on our soundscape (sonic environment);
  • to raise awareness about the acoustic ecology movement, including ideas regarding how noise pollution can be reduced; and
  • to introduce new educational initiatives and community events related to listening and acoustic ecology.

Participation in the 2012 World Listening Day focuses on the aforementioned goals, which could include listening parties, listening to one’s soundscape in private, private or public soundwalks, public forums about acoustic ecology, and more. What would you like to do on the 2012 World Listening Day? Events could happen on Wednesday, July 18th. However, if another day during that week (July 15-21) would work better with your schedule, that would be fine.

World Listening Day happens annually on July 18th—the birthdate of R. Murray Schafer, a Canadian composer who established the World Soundscape Project. Its research laid the foundations for what became known as Soundscape Studies and Acoustic Ecology.

Dozens of organizations and more than a thousand people from six continents have participated in World Listening Day so far — on the inaugural World Listening Day in 2010, and the second WLD last year. Both were great successes, and we’re hoping to have more people and organizations participate this year.

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