This article explores how a listening approach might address the complex
challenges of researching the relationship between Indigenous participation in
media and mainstream policy-making processes. An overview of contemporary
Indigenous media demonstrates how digital and social media have built on the
vibrant and innovative Indigenous media tradition, and enabled a proliferation
of new Indigenous voices. But do the powerful listen to Indigenous-produced
media, and does this constitute meaningful participation in the political process?
The article distinguishes between participation as involvement in the production
and dissemination of media, and participation as political influence. It argues
that both meanings are crucial for fully realising the potential of Indigenous
participatory media, and contends that a listening approach might offer ways to
research and unlock the democratic potential of Indigenous media participation.