Kim's Recent Essays...
US International Broadcasting: Success Requires Independence and Consolidation.
In International Broadcasting, Even the Static Must be Credible.
America Calling China: A Strategy for International Broadcasting.
Five broadcasting heads reporting to nine Governors. And here I thought the National Review favored small government.
Aren't there tens of thousands of corporations around the world with boards of directors, who hire, and can fire, the CEOs of those corporations? Why would members of the BBG be afraid of a CEO they hire and can fire? Why would there be any question of who reports to whom?
If the CEO of USIB is appointed by the president with Senate consent, as some have advocated, there would be a big question of who reports to whom. Confusion would ensue, because the CEO could choose to "report to" to the administration rather than the Board. The independence that is necessary for any genuine news organization would be lost.
Mr. O'Sullivan writes: "reform should ensure that the broadcasting heads report ... directly to the governors." That's pretty much the inefficient situation that exists now. A BBG-appointed CEO who has authority over all of the entity heads is necessary in the short term. The consolidation of all the entities into one corporation is the step that must come after that.
Huffington Post, 5 Feb 2013, Michael Calderone: "Regarding the mass firing of [RL] journalists in Russia, [former RFE/RL president Jeffrey] Gedmin said that 'even if it does make sense, in some fashion or form, the way it was executed was universally acknowledged as a completely unmitigated disaster. [New acting RFE/RL president Kevin Klose is] going to have to develop his own strategy to fix it, and I don’t want be melodramatic, but it will take years for wounds to heal,' Gedmin said. 'People feel very damaged and very betrayed.'"
Boston Globe, 20 Jan 2013, Martha Bayles: "During the Cold War, American popular culture played a key role in alienating Soviet youth from stodgy communist regimes, so it made sense for RFE-RL and its sister organization, the Voice of America, to include jazz, rock, and other pop culture in their programming. But today, the authoritarians are onto us. To varying degrees, Russia, China, Iran, and others now do their best to keep their own media amusing. And while American pop culture retains its appeal, the people in these countries don’t need more entertainment from America. What they need is the kind of news and public-affairs programming that their rulers don’t want them to have." -- Generally-speaking, news and public-affairs programming makes the most sense for US-government-funded international broadcasting. There are, however, a few instances where entertainment programming can bring in audiences. Radio Sawa has been one example, and might still be.
See previous post about same subject.