Commencing in 1993 with the original purpose of bringing together a devastated and isolated gay community facing the AIDS crisis, JOY is now a multimedia organisation representing the diverse LGBTIQA+ rainbow.

Key Moments In Our History

  • 1993 – JOY is incorporated on 28 June and named ‘JOY Melbourne Independent Community Broadcasters Association Incorporated’. JOY began broadcasting on World AIDS Day (1 December) on 90.7FM from the original studio location of 268A Coventry St South Melbourne.   The first words spoken on-air were by founder John Oliver, “Can I have a cup of coffee and then we’ll get going?” These words were broadcast by accident. The first track to be played on-air was scheduled to be Kylie Minogue’s Celebration, but due to technical issues Jimmy Barnes‘ Working Class Man was played first. 
  • 1994 - LGBTIQA+ clientele were searched during the Tasty nightclub raid. JOY protested on-air and provided a safe space for our community to explore legal options. 
  • 1995 – JOY delivered thefirst broadcast of Midsumma carnival  
  • 1996 – JOY broadcast for 3 weeks – 24 hours a day to promote the Commercial Rd Diversity Street Party 
  • 2004 –  JOY becomes the largest Gay and Lesbian member organisation in Australia. 
  • 2005 –  JOY broadcasts for the first time from Sydney’s Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras 
  • 2009 –  JOY launched QNN Q-mmunity Network News which broadcasts JOY to the National Community Radio Network of 160 stations. 
  • 2014 –  JOY embarks on the most complicated broadcast of our history from AIDS 2014 6 day Conference leading to our podcasts trending on iTunes. 
  • 2017 –  JOY advocated heavily for the Same SexMarriage Bill and celebrated when we were successful! 
  • 2018 – JOY 94.9 celebrates 25 years on-air. 
  • 2019 – JOY received the key for our new home at the Victorian Pride Centre. The move to the Pride Centre is expected in early 2020.
  • 2020 – Thanks to our generous patrons Geoffrey Smith and Gary Singer, JOY launched JOY Breakfast in April 2020 hosted by Anna and Dean Murphy, followed by the launch of JOY Drive in June 2020, hosted by Dee Mason and Warren Andrew.
  • 2021 – JOY made the transition to the Victorian Pride Centre where it now operates amongst many other amazing LGBTIQA+ organisations whose work, along with JOY’s, act as key touch points and supports for the LGBTIQA+ community.
  • 2022 – JOY officially rebrands as JOY Media and launches content and service offerings under three distinct sub brands – JOY 94.9, JOY Academy and JOY Gigs.


Key facts about JOY

  • 1st Broadcast (90 day test license) on 90.7 FM: 1st December 1993… it was World AIDS Day!
  • 1st on-air presenter: John Oliver
  • 1st official track played: Celebration by Kylie Minogue
  • 1st outside live-cross event: Midsumma 1995
  • 1st outside broadcast: Diversity 1996
  • Last test broadcast as aspirant broadcaster on 90.7fm28th August 2001
  • Full licence granted: 19th December 2001
  • 1st full time broadcast (24/7) on 94.9FM: 12th January 2002
  • Transmitter first location 1993:  268 A Coventry St South Melbourne (the original aerial is still on the roof!)
  • Transmitter current location 1996: – Melbourne Central
  • Listener numbers Monthly 620,000 people in Melbourne and more online (McNair Ingenuity Research December 2019)


Some fun snippets from our past: 


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