VOA gets exclusive interview in Afghanistam, thus deriving benefit for its sponsoring government, which means RFE/RL can't use the information, thus depriving benefit to its sponsoring ... wait a minute ...

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Ambassador William Wood, the new U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, told the Voice of America (VOA) in an exclusive interview today that "as long as the Taleban can continue to sustain itself from outside the country, and as long as it meets with some level of cooperation among the drug trafficking, criminal, and corrupt community inside Afghanistan, it will continue to be a threat." VOA press release, 26 June 2007. VOA and RFE/RL share time on FM and medium wave transmitters in Afghanistan. This means the United States transmits to Afghanistan by way of two fractional international broadcasting efforts, rather than one complete one. This is a main reason the BBC has a larger audience than U.S. international broadcasting, even though Britain spends less on international broadcasting than does the United States.

The public diplomacy does more harm than good hypothesis.

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"While it's true that America has engaged in less public diplomacy since the Cold War, linking that to rising anti-Americanism is specious. During the Cold War, efforts like Radio Free Europe were essential to providing populations trapped behind the Iron Curtain access to independent news sources. With today's globe-spanning 24-hour news cable networks and the Internet, nearly anyone can access any desired viewpoint. While it's true that radical extremists and their sympathizers flood global nets with slanted broadcasts and sheer propaganda, there's no shortage of mass-media venues through which any audience can access American perspectives. Indeed, the global reach of our mass media fuels an anti-Americanism all its own." Thomas P.M. Barnett, Scripps Howard, 29 June 2007. It is incorrect that "nearly anyone can access any desired viewpoint." Several countries, China in particular, deny access to certain websites or television channels. Furthermore, people who don't speak English have much less access to information and viewpoints. This is why governments fund international broadcasting efforts, which in some cases must use shortwave to get through to the target country.

We might soon be hearing more Armenian on shortwave (updated).

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Armenia's National Assembly is due today to debate government draft amendments that could end Armenian-language broadcasts of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Among the amendments is a proposal to ban, or put a heavy fine on, retransmission of foreign-broadcast programs." RFE/RL News, 28 June 2007. Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe criticizes the amendment. RFE/RL News, 28 June 2007. See also OSCE, 28 June 2007. “Why are they doing this? Because they are afraid of Radio Liberty. Radio Liberty is the only broadcaster which is independent and not controlled by the authorities.” Armenialiberty.org, 27 June 2007. “'I wonder if European public TV and radio companies like BBC and Deutsche Welle would allocate or resell airtime to media outlets of other countries,' said Aram Safarian, who spoke on behalf of (a) governing party, Prosperous Armenia (BHK)." Armenialiberty.org, 28 June 2007. Update: "U.S.-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty is the only foreign news organization whose programs are re-broadcast on Armenian state radio — up to five times a day in some cases. Radio Liberty's FM broadcasts would not be affected. The amendments would not affect foreign broadcasters, such as Deutsche Welle or British Broadcasting Corp., that broadcast on the FM frequency. Neither have Armenian language service, but do broadcast in Russian." International Herald Tribue, 29 June 2007. "Armenia's parliament has passed in the first of two readings a draft law that would impose severe restrictions on foreign broadcast media." RFE/RL News, 29 June 2007. Protested by Human Rights Watch, 29 June 2007.

You mean reruns of "I Love Lucy" don't make America more popular?

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"A new poll of people in 47 countries shows growing negative feelings about the United States around the world. Among the findings in the survey, released on June 27, is that majorities or pluralities in all but six of the countries view the United States unfavorably. The problem is not how Americans practice democracy in their own country, but how they're seen as trying to export it... . [Karen] Hughes' office is investing heavily in expanding ... 'people-to-people programs' that give foreigners a more thorough understanding of the United States, its policies, and its people than is possible by, say, simply watching old U.S. television programs." Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty News, 29 June 2007.

A "touch" of public diplomacy to the Pacific?

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"It was evident from the [Pacific Islands Council of Leaders] meeting that the U.S. is looking at an engagement with two-prongs: a strong security focus with a touch of public diplomacy programs to smooth out the edges. It appears the Pacific Islands will continue to be defined in Washington by who they are near, not who they are." Suzanne Chutaro, Pacific Magazine, 29 June 2007. VOA English broadcasts to the Pacific island region ended a few years ago, where they did well, because of limited domestic media of the target countries. The signal from the VOA transmitter in Delano, California, rumored to be closed soon, was usually good.

Chinese assistance will help Liberian FM stations reach beyond Bong County.

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Governments of China and Liberia yesterday signed a contractual agreement of US 3.75 million dollars for the revitalization of the Liberia Broadcasting System (LBS), the ceremony took place at the Chinese Embassy in Monrovia. ... The Liberia Broadcasting System was one those badly damaged during the heat of the Liberian civil war; its short wave and television are at the moment nonfunctioning. Its current broadcast facilities (FM) can highly [hardly?] reach beyond Totota in Bong County." The Liberia Times, 29 June 2007. In Kenya: "Last year, state-run China Radio International launched its FM station in the country. The move is seen as a way for the Asian country to have a greater influence in Africa. The station is transmitting 19 hours of programming in English, Kiswahili and standard Chinese." Business Daily, 28 June 2007.

Does Monty Python put the England back in Rochester?

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Even though direct descendants of English Pilgrims founded Rochester, settled it and today make up this area's fourth largest ethnic group, no nation is harder to spot in daily life. We don't mean Britain — the island containing Wales, England and Scotland. We mean England — the tiny nation whose language, religion and legal system formed the very core of Rochester's identity, yet whose culture here now seems barely perceptible. ... Local public radio and TV also offer authentic sounds and sights from England. WXXI-TV (Channel 11, cable channel 21) airs BBC World News at 11 p.m. Monday through Friday; and on Saturday evenings airs British comedies such as Keeping up Appearances and Monty Python's Flying Circus." Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 30 June 2007.

Voice of Zimbabwe slow to get started.

Posted: 30 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings (ZBH)'s Spot FM Editor-in-Chief Methuseli Moyo faces dismissal for resisting deployment to the new state-run radio station, Voice of Zimbabwe (VOZ), it was heard yesterday. Government sources said Moyo could be fired soon for refusing to take up a senior position at the short wave radio station in Gweru." Zimbabwe Independent, 29 June 2007. BBC Monitoring is still not hearing any news, or anything other than Chimurenga (liberation war) music on the Voice of Zimbabwe's transmitters.

New entries to the survey research file.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"BBC World News released a commissioned study that (naturally) indicates a demand for the channel's 24/7 international news service in the U.S." Cable360.net, 29 June 2007. "While CNN has the highest top-of-mind reputation as a source of international news - 51% name it as their first or second choice - the BBC is ranked second. 24% name BBC World News, compared with 23% for Fox News, and 17% for local newspapers or the Internet." BBC World press release, 28 June 2007. In Edison Media Research survey, "consumers aged 12 years and older were asked to choose the 'most essential' medium in their life; 33 per cent chose the internet, just behind television (36 per cent), but above radio (17 per cent) and newspapers (10 per cent)." Indiantelevision.com, 29 June 2007. As it not entirely clear from this article as published, the survey was conducted in the United States. Details at Edison Media Research.

Digital shortwave receiver to be designed by U.S. college students (updated).

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"HCJB would like to create low-power receivers that anyone can use at low-cost." Mission Network News, 28 June 2007. According to Kai Ludwig, HCJB sent an e-mail to its German listeners saying that the last of its shortwave antennas in Ecuador will be dismantled in August, to make way for airport construction. Still no word on the construction of any new HCJB shortwave transmission facilities in Ecuador. Update: Minister of Communications Hélio Costa indicated that Brazil will likely adopt a hybrid of IBOC for AM and FM and Digital Radio Mondiale for shortwave. Radio World Online, 29 June 2007.

Radio Budapest nears it end.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
International service, now in Hungarian, English, Spanish, German, French, and Russian, will end on 30 June after 70 years. See contributors to DX Listening Digest on 26 June and 28 June. The Radio Budapest website makes no mention of its impending demise, and streamed audio of its programs has always been difficult to find there. But Glenn Hauser points us to this URL for audio archives of Radio Budapest's last days: real1.radio.hu/nemzeti.htm.

Trouble for U.S. funded journalism training program in Russia.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Russia halted operations of a U.S.-funded organization that trains Russian journalists and the head of the organization fled the country for fear she would be jailed, she and her lawyers said Friday. Authorities pounced on a minor customs infraction by Manana Aslamazyan, president of the Educated Media Foundation, to halt the organization's activities. ... The foundation's legal predecessor, Internews Russia, received $8 million from the U.S. Agency for International Development since June 2004." AP, 29 June 2007. See also Internews, 22 June 2007.

John McCain makes his reversal on USIA a campaign plank.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In 1999, I supported a plan to integrate USIA into the State Department. In theory, this reform was supposed to ensure the coordination of our public diplomacy with our government-to-government relationships. In practice, it made public diplomacy an orphan. ... We need an independent agency with the sole purpose of getting America's message out in a factual and persuasive manner: managing radio and TV broadcasts to those in need of objective news; establishing American libraries with Internet access throughout the world; sending Americans overseas and sponsoring foreigners' visits to America for educational and cultural exchanges; and creating a professional corps of public-diplomacy experts who speak the local language and whose careers are spent promoting American values, ideas, culture and education." Sen. John McCain, Orlando Sentinel, 29 June 2007. Placing an "objective news" broadcaster under an agency whose purpose is "getting America's message out" was always, and will always be, unworkable.

What -- no moving the needle?

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Discussion on improving U.S. image in Muslim world. Shibley Telhami: "I think public diplomacy should be a reservoir, not something that is going to affect policy immediately. It should be for building a reservoir of relations that would stand crises and bad policies in the short term." PBS NewsHour, 27 June 2007.

Karen Hughes and Tony Blair occupy same paragraph.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Sending Tony Blair to negotiate a Middle East peace is worse than making Karen Hughes undersecretary for public diplomacy, charging her with explaining to the Arab world how, if only they understood us better, they would really, really like us. She's keeping busy, and on a good day, at least doing no harm." Margaret Carlson, Bloomberg, 28 June 2007.

Internet radios as latter-day shortwave.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"'Travel the world and never leave home behind' reads the publicity sheet for NetWorksGo, Tivoli's portable Internet/FM radio which - along with NetWorks, Tivoli's Internet/FM table radio - is scheduled for a late 2007 release. Yes, descriptions formerly reserved for shortwave are now being applied to these Internet radios. And radios they are. There's no need to boot up the computer. With a wireless (WiFi) or Ethernet internet connection, thousands of radio stations worldwide - including many HD multicast and DAB stations also broadcasting via the Internet - can be received literally at the touch of a button." John Figliozzi, Radio Netherlands Media Network, 28 June 2007. More about internet radios here.

Internet via shortwave.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
The U.S. Navy will "communicate over high frequency (HF) [shortwave] by sending Internet Protocol-based traffic such as text messages... . It’s been so long time since the Navy has used high frequency 'hardly anyone [in the Navy] even knows what it is anymore.'" Government Executive, 28 June 2007.

Death threats to Alarabiya program host.

Posted: 29 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Rima Salha, a Dubai-based Lebanese TV journalist, is "the anchor of the 10-month-old Friday programme that deals with terrorism, is the first Arab TV host to tackle the global dilemma of terrorism in her hour-long programme, beamed across the world. ... Rima gained prominence from her Arabic satellite TV stints with Al Jazeera and Al Hurra before moving to Al Arabiya as a newscaster and presenter of Death Industry, which is now putting her life in danger." Xpress (Dubai), 28 June 2007.

Recalling the "chwee tee whee" of shortwave (updated).

Posted: 28 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
In India: "There was a time, not very long ago, when, apart from a live performance, the only way of listening to music was on the old short wave radios. You had to turn the knob on the big machine, listen to static for a while and strange chwee tee whee noises till a song finally burst out." Hindustan Times, 21 June 2007. Update: "Music was always an integral part of [Ottawa nightclub owner Eugene] Haslam's life, from his time as a boy in India, twisting dials on his shortwave radio to pick up broadcasts from Radio Peking, Voice of America and the BBC. I had my ears glued to it. Living in Calcutta, I could take myself away through radio." Ottawa Sun, 29 June 2007.

More shortwave as music, albeit with an unfortunate track title.

Posted: 28 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Saxophonist Alessandro Bosetti’s "experiment comes to full realization with 'Idiot.' Bosetti transcribes the nonsense of a distorted short-wave radio broadcast and repeats it, as faithfully as he can, over the sample. The voice is orchestrated by both electric piano and soprano saxophone. The scratchy broadcast then extends into a group dynamic with live bass and backing singers." All About Jazz, 27 June 2007.

Iran's Press TV promises July launch, talk shows from Washington and New York (updated again).

Posted: 28 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Asked if Press TV was the Persian version of the Al Jazeera, [Iran broadcasting official] answered that such a comparison would be out of place for the Al Jazeera channel has proven to have duplicitous reactions to international events." Press TV, 20 June 2007. "The channel, which has a total of more than 400 staff, says it has 26 reporters employed at different locations worldwide, including Jerusalem, Gaza City and Ramallah on the occupied West Bank as well as New York and Washington. Its features will include documentaries on aspects of the Islamic world and culture as well as live talk shows broadcast from Damascus, New York and Washington." AFP, 21 June 2007. See also Press TV website. Station official says: "It is a state-owned channel, but it is not managed by the state. It has its own guidelines." Reuters, 26 June 2006. Update: "As the BBC World Service puts the finishing touches to its plans for a Farsi satellite TV channel, it has emerged that Iran's state broadcaster will start an English news service next week." The Guardian, 27 June 2007. "According to the the site of the Web information company Alexa, the Press TV site on the internet is ranked 75,143 for traffic usage. This means that only .0023 percent of internet users have been on the site. Still, the numbers are going up, with a 180% increase in the last three months." Jerusalem Post, 27 June 2007. Isa Saharkhiz, member of the Association for Press Freedom in Iran, says: "When there is censorship and self-censorship, obviously, editors in international news networks -- including the one we are talking about -- are forced to comply with censorship and self-censorship by ignoring some news and exaggerating other unimportant news." RFE/RL News, 27 June 2007.

On VOA's Talk to America, 28 June,

Posted: 28 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
I interviewed Terrence Ripmaster, author of the new book Willis Conover: Broadcasting Jazz to the World. And we discussed Radio Budapest, which will end its international broadcasts on June 30 after 70 years. We closed with an announcement that Talk to America will end in about a week, to be replaced with a web-based live chat, Thursdays at 1800 UTC. Audio will be available here.

RFE/RL report details websites used by Iraqi insurgents (updated).

Posted: 28 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"A surprisingly rich mix of news and religion and entertainment." Washington Post, 26 June 2007. See also Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty News, 26 June 2007. Update: "One thing this story misses is that the vast majority of Iraqis and other populations in the middle east receive their 'insurgent' news in 2 non-traditional ways: 1. Mobile Phone videos: ...
2. CD videos." Wired Danger Room blog, 26 June 2007. "The study is harrowing in its details." CBS News Public Eye, 26 June 2007. See also Alvin Snyder, USC Center on Public Diplomacy, 26 June 2007.

Join me

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
on VOA's Talk to America, this Thursday, 28 June, 1400-1500 UTC, for another discussion about international broadcasting. I will interview Terrence Ripmaster, author of the new book Willis Conover: Broadcasting Jazz to the World. The program follows the news at 1400 UTC (10:00 a.m. EDT) on these shortwave frequencies or via the VOA News Now Windows Media or RealPlayer live audio streams. Join the conversation by calling +1-202-619-3111 or e-mail to talk@voanews.com.

Murdoch's Chinese entanglements.

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Mr. Murdoch’s third wife, Wendi, is a mainland Chinese who once worked for his Hong Kong-based satellite broadcaster, Star TV. Her role in managing investments and honing elite connections in China has underscored uncertainties within the Murdoch family about how the family-controlled News Corporation will be run after Mr. Murdoch, 76, retires or dies." New York Times, 25 June 2007.

Alhurra's harder edge.

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"To get a harder edge to its offerings, Alhurra axed 'Inside Actors Studio,' which it had run repeatedly, and now 'most of the documentaries we are airing come from PBS,' according to Communications Director Deirdre Kline. Alhurra is acquiring fewer programs and producing more of its own." Alvin Snyder, USC Center on Public Diplomacy, 22 June 2007. Neocons "have begun to expand their presence in U.S. government-funded and supported media outlets such as Voice of America (VOA), al-Hurra, and Radio Farda." Ron Jacobs, CounterPunch, 26 June 26.

The dangerous profession of international broadcasting.

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
WTOP radio interviews Radio Farda's Parma Azima, still not allowed to leave Iran. WTOPnews.com, 26 June 2007. See also Part 2 of the interview, WTOPnews.com, 27 June 2007. Bail for Azima was set at $500,000, 50 times that of a rapist." BBC News, 25 June 2007. Kidnapped BBC Gaza correspondent Alan Johnston seen in video wearing what he says is an explosive vest. "Captors tell me that very promising negotiations were ruined when the Hamas movement and the British government decided to press for a military solution to this kidnapping." BBC News, 25 June 2007.

In Djibouti, some international stations on the FM dial despite "authoritarian tendencies."

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Reporters sans frontières "condemns the increasingly authoritarian tendencies of [Djibouti] President Ismael Omar Guelleh’s government, in particular, a campaign of harassment that led to Le Renouveau Djiboutien, the country’s sole opposition newspaper, being silenced. ... The British and US public radio stations, the BBC and Voice of America (VOA), are available on the FM wave band. But Radio France Internationale’s FM transmitter was shut down on 14 January 2005 after broadcasting reports about the 1995 murder of French judge Bernard Borrel in Djibouti. The possession of satellite dishes is allowed but is closely monitored by the authorities." RSF, 26 June 2007.

The sports coverage Americans are missing.

Posted: 26 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Visiting France, as I have been doing, allows for a different perspective, and it seems that in some ways, sports coverage on American television is inferior to what's available on the Continent. ... Things get even better when you factor in CNN International and BBC World, two channels to which Americans abroad are likely to subscribe. They may even get Al-Jazeera English and Britain's Sky News without even asking for them. All these global news services — unlike the CNN you see in America — cover sports around the world in impressive detail." Brendan Bernhard, New York Sun, 26 July 2007.

New BBG chairman reconfirms the ambiguity of U.S. international broadcasting.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Interview with James K. Glassman, new chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors. "First of all, from my own professional background and experience, I know my way around a news room, and, at a basic level, that is essential to understanding what the BBG’s broadcasting entities do: they are all journalistic organizations, so I know what they do and how they do it. I also understand and embrace the mission of U.S. international broadcasting, which is to broadcast accurate and objective news and information around the world. One of the essential pillars of freedom, here in the U.S. or anywhere, is a free press. Our broadcasters are themselves models of a free press. But in addition there is also an important foreign policy dimension to our mission. The 1994 International Broadcasting Act states, 'international broadcasting shall…be consistent with the foreign policy objectives of the United States.' It accomplishes foreign policy goals in two ways – first, by presenting the policies and values of the U.S. clearly and effectively, at the same time giving a 'balanced and comprehensive projection of American thought,' and, second, by broadcasting how a free press functions. I believe that fulfilling the mission of international broadcasting is critical to winning the war on terror and to meeting other policy objectives of the United States government." followthemedia.com, 25 June 2007. Mr. Glassman tiptoes through this minefield without firmly coming down on the side of news or propaganda. If the "foreign policy dimension" means that the U.S. government will have some say in what languages U.S. international broadcasting transmits, and that USIB will cover U.S. foreign policy as part of its news and current affairs function, there might be some hope. But if it means that some information should be emphasized, and other news or newsmakers minimized, and U.S. policies advocated on occasion by direct appeals, U.S. international broadcasting will fail. The audience for international broadcasting is smarter than the experts and decision makers who formulate the strategies of U.S. international broadcasting (and those of us who comment on those strategies). The audience will detect, and will not be taken in by, attempts to mix "mission" into the reliable news they are seeking. More about this in my New York Times piece on 4 June. Meanwhile, Mr. Glassman continues to write a financial advice column, as in Kiplinger's, July 2007.

"Right-wing hawk" placed in the wrong wing of the U.S. international broadcasting organizational chart.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Right-wing hawks have gained control of the weapons in the 'war of ideas' - US government-funded and supported media outlets such as Voice of America (VOA), Al-Hurra, and Radio Farda, which broadcast to the Middle East and aim to offer an alternative view of the news. The recent appointment of Jeffrey Gedmin, a veteran neo-conservative polemicist, as the director of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE), and a smear campaign that led to the recent resignation of Larry Register, Al-Hurra's former news director, appears to herald a turn toward more ideologically rigid programming. ... Gedmin's new job gave him control over Radio Farda and Voice of America [sic]. Some listeners have since noted changes in the tone and content of their programming." Khody Akhavi, Inter Press Service, 26 June 2007.

Rep. Delahunt travels to Florida and subjects Radio/TV Martí to some oversight.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"U.S. Rep. Bill Delahunt renewed his call for congressional hearings to examine the funding and content of Radio and TV Martí." Miami Herald, 23 June 2007. "The Marti broadcasts are inefficient and don't reach enough Cubans, Delahunt said. But he said Pedro Roig, who heads the department, appears committed to improving them." St. Petersburg Times, 24 June 2007. Delhunt is chairman of the House Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight.

With a title that long, it must be a good book.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The next president of the United States would do well to include Dick Martin among his or her panel of close advisors. ... At the request of the American Management Association, he has written a book of extraordinary insight called 'Rebuilding Brand America - What we must do to restore our reputation and safeguard American business abroad,' and not a moment too soon." Peter Golden, Daily News Tribune (Waltham MA), 24 June 2007. See also information about the book at American Management Association.

France 24's credibility will depend in large part on the nature of its "cooperation" with government information offices.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Kuwait's ambassador to France and director of the Kuwaiti Information Office visit France 24. "The two sides had discussed 'what form of cooperation they could have between them.'" Kuwait Times, 24 June 2007. On proposed European constitution: "France 24, the international news channel, has been more impartial than the BBC." William Rees-Mogg, The Times, 25 June 2007.

Sambrook on the news morass.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Interview with Richard Sambrook, BBC's Director of Global News. "With this huge morass of information available, people are still going to want to know where they can find the stuff that matters to them." Wired blog, 22 June 2007. "If Richard Sambrook runs BBC World I wish he would do something about the missed cues, audio breaks, black screens, bits of cameramen in shot and all the other amateurisms which seem to plague the station. There are times it looks like it's run by work-experience kids and is certainly no way up to any sort of international standard when it comes to the technical side." And Sambrook's response. The Guardian technology blog, 24 June 2007.

Worldnet Television, in its afterlife, supports sanctity of the family.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Television program "The Profiles Series" "will take viewers on a journey to the international organization’s headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado for an in-depth look at how this leading faith-based nonprofit organization helps families with advice, encouragement and resources for everything from marriage and parenting to entertainment, health, culture and other issues that affect the family in today’s difficult world. 'It’s an honor to recognize an organization so committed to preserving the sanctity of the family,' commented Wali Waters, Executive Producer of The Profiles Series. ... The Profiles Series can ... be seen internationally on WorldNet, part of Voice of America Television." Focus on the Family press release, 24 June 2007. Interesting that the Worldnet brand is still mentioned, as it was merged with VOA on 16 May 2004.

And, by the way, there is still a VOA Turkish Service.

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
CNN, Fox, MTV, and other U.S. channels have partnerships in Turkey. "There were worries that the Fox channel would alienate Turkish viewers. Criticism was made to the effect that the U.S. broadcasting approach would not be successful in Turkey and would not be able to translate successfully. However, since the start of Fox's broadcasting, it became clear that the concerns were unfounded." Turkish Daily News, 23 June 2007.

International broadcasters among targets of CIS crackdown on media freedom (updated).

Posted: 25 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The third part of the broader crackdown pattern is increasing attention on international media, especially international broadcasting. The Russian authorities, for instance, have focused on the broadcasts of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL). Since 2005, the Kremlin has undertaken a systematic intimidation campaign whereby RFE/RL’s partners – Russian radio stations that rebroadcast their programs as part of their own formats – have been audited and subjected to harassment. Similar efforts to obstruct international broadcasting have been undertaken in other CIS countries, including Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan." Freedom House, 21 June 2007. Update: See also RFE/RL News, 25 June 2007.

Calling Iran: the pitfalls of regime-change broadcasting.

Posted: 24 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"On occasion, V.O.A. has lurched toward Reza Pahlavi, the shah’s son. The 40-something would-be monarch, who lives in Maryland, is often on the program and on occasion is invited to bestow New Year’s wishes on the Iranian people. And on April 1 of this year V.O.A. featured Abdolmalek Rigi, the head of Jondollah, a militant Sunni group that operates inside Iran’s southeastern border and claims to advance the interests of the Baluch minority. Jondollah is responsible for dozens of hostage takings and terrorist attacks. On this particular round-table program, Rigi was introduced as the leader of an armed national resistance group. Two days later, ABC News reported that the United States was funneling covert support to the group. (The U.S. immediately denied this.) Mehdi Khalaji, currently a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, worked at Radio Farda for three years and has spent the past months studying the Persian-language media. The new administrators at V.O.A. 'do not seem to be able to distinguish between journalism and propaganda,' Khalaji told me. 'If you host the head of Jondollah and call him a freedom fighter or present a Voice of America run by monarchists, Iranians are going to stop listening.'" Negar Azimi, New York Times Magazine, 24 June 2007. "A small but highly vocal minority [in California is] made up mostly of Iranian monarchists who want to bring back the dynasty of the last shah of Iran. This group resembles the anti-Fidel Castro Cuban community in Florida. It has more money than the first group and therefore controls the means of mass communications in the community — radio and satellite TV — which it uses to broadcast Persian programs into Iran. This group opposes any rapprochement between the U.S. and Iran and, directly or indirectly, supports military attacks against Iran." Muhammad Sahimi, Los Angeles Times, 22 June 2007.

I was hoping for a Kim, but RFA selects a Lee to head its Korean service.

Posted: 24 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Radio Free Asia (RFA) has appointed award-winning South Korean radio and television anchor Kwang Chool Lee as director of RFA’s Korean-language service, which broadcasts four hours daily to North Korea. ... Prior to joining RFA, Mr. Lee worked for 26 years as anchor, correspondent, editor, and bureau chief for the South Korean broadcaster KBS, where his tenure included long-term postings in New York and as Washington bureau chief. Mr. Lee also launched the first Korean broadcasting operation in Moscow after the dissolution of the Soviet Union." RFA press release, 22 June 2007.

A book reading on World Service: just the thing for listening in a bunker during a bombardment.

Posted: 24 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"I remember being stuck for close on a week with my Eritrean mentor in a bombarded town named Nacfa in 1987, during the long war between Ethiopia and Eritrea. Bombardment by Mengistu's Ethiopian army began at four each afternoon, but we were relatively comfortable in a deep bunker eight feet underground, where the Eritreans listened between noises to the BBC Africa News on their short-wave radios, and then listened to the BBC book reading. The book was Anita Brookner's Hotel du Lac, which I got to like in that all-too-vivid scenario for its subtle, elegant prose and its tension within its glaciers of longing. An Eritrean discussed the book with me in the bunker one evening after our staple meal of spaghetti. He asked, 'If that Englishwoman likes that Englishman, why doesn't she just tell him?' 'Well,' I said, already looking forward to the next day's elegant reading, 'you see, that's your northern European Protestant ethos for you. Her art is to capture it so exactly.' He still didn't quite get it, but I did. So here's to Anita. And while we're at it, God bless the World Service." Thomas Keneally, The Guardian, 23 June 2007.

So, if I have this right, there would be one VOA Spanish Service for Venezuela, and another for the rest of Latin America (updated).

Posted: 24 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The House backed a proposal by Florida Republican Rep. Connie Mack that would provide $10 million for the Voice of America to boost its broadcasts to Venezuela. 'Freedom of the press died in Venezuela on May 27, 2007, when Chavez shut down Radio Caracas Television.'" McClatchy, 21 June 2007. “As the window on independent media in Venezuela closes, Voice of America will play a critical role in getting the truth out about what is happening in the country. Voice of America must provide and create additional programs. With targeted funding, Voice of America can have an even greater ability and capability to broadcast longer with more programming. Voice of America serves a significant counter to Chavez propaganda being exported to Nicaragua, Bolivia, Ecuador and Cuba." Naples Daily News, 21 June 2007. “Now we must be the pillar of hope for the people of Venezuela and our friends and neighbors in Latin America who fear Hugo Chavez and his communist revolution.” Rep. Connie Mack press release, 21 June 2007. Venezuelan Information Minister Willian Lara: "This constitutes an escalation in the media campaign that Bush has unleashed against the Venezuelan revolution. Truth is winning and will keep winning this battle. Imperial lies against Venezuela will be defeated." Bloomberg, 22 June 2007. Update: Comparing Soviet and Venezuelan media. El Univeral, 22 June 2007.

Give me that old-time earmarked religious radio.

Posted: 24 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Even the seemingly odd requests, such as (Rep. Pete) Sessions' for $2.5 million on behalf of Madagascar World Voice radio, bring to light important projects such as the role of radio in combating HIV/AIDS in Africa, officials say. 'MWV is making a difference in Madagascar and can make a difference all across Africa,' James McGee, U.S. ambassador to Madagascar, wrote to Mr. Sessions. 'I support their worthy efforts in the fight against HIV/AIDS and would encourage them to expand their coverage to as wide an audience as possible.' But no matter how worthy the cause, asking for an earmark is no guarantee of federal funding." Dallas Morning News, 23 June 2007. From House Report 110-197 (to accompany H.R. 2764): "The [Appropriations] Committee understands that local and national media can provide an effective tool for combating HIV/AIDS. The Committee recommends that USAID, in collaboration with the Office of the Global HIV/AIDS Coordinator, at a minimum sustain its current media programs in Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, and India and consider expanding activities to other countries in Africa. The Committee is aware of the work of Global Communications International, Local Voices, and Madagascar World Voice and encourages USAID to consider such programs in fiscal year 2008." Madagascar World Voice, whose shortwave station is under construction, is associated with World Christian Broadcasting, which operates shortwave station KNLS in Alaska. More about MWV at DX Listening Digest, 22 March 2007. And Monitoring Times blog, 7 May 2007.

BBC: Blah Blah Corporation?

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The heart sinks at the thought of yet another worthy BBC initiative. ... World Stories (9.05am and repeated, World Service) is 'part of BBC World Service's commitment to encourage creativity and staff development' blah blah. But don't let that put you off today's helping, in which Dima Hamden, a producer with the World Service's Arabic Service, takes a break to interview Arab-Americans who have served in Iraq. ... This unexpectedly moving programme is worth 23 minutes of anyone's time." Phil Daoust, The Guardian, 22 June 2007.

International broadcasters interview Taliban spokesman.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"A Taliban spokesman has told Radio Free Afghanistan that militants are changing their tactics in Afghanistan and will increasingly carry out attacks in Kabul. RFE/RL’s Radio Free Afghanistan interviewed Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed yesterday by telephone from an undisclosed location near the Afghan-Pakistan border." World News Australia, 22 June 2007. See also RFE/RL News, 21 June 2007. Taleban spokesman Zabiyullah Mujahed interviewed by BBC world affairs editor John Simpson. BBC News, 21 June 2007. This recalls the VOA's controversial interview with the Taliban's Mullah Omar in late 2001. See The Correspondent (Hong Kong), December 2001. And The Guardian, 26 September 2001.

Cultural diplomacy: listening as well as talking.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Richard T. Arndt, author of The First Resort of Kings: American Cultural Diplomacy in the Twentieth Century, "provides an inside account of ideological struggle and bureaucratic infighting that persisted for decades. The battle ended when the USIA 'gobbled up' the State Department's Division of Cultural Relations during the administration of president Jimmy Carter, whose aides failed to realize that the latter organization better embodied his theme of 'listening as well as talking' as a fundamental principle of foreign relations." Martin A Schell, Asia Times Online, 23 June 2007.

Possible new hurdles for WorldSpace in India.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Satellite radio service may get costlier for consumers once WorldSpace, the only satellite radio company in the country, is asked to pay licence fee as well as share up to 20 per cent of its annual revenue with the government. ... According to sources, the draft satellite radio policy includes imposition of a one-time entry fee for satellite operators, up to 20 per cent revenue-sharing arrangement with the government, a 26 per cent cap on foreign direct investments for broadcasting news and current affairs. ... The government is also considering disallowing WorldSpace the use of repeater network." Business Standard, 22 June 2007.

Citizen reporter tries to "wake" business-minded Chinese.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Interview with "citizen reporter" Zhou Shuguang. "Interfax: When did you start to fight the Great Firewall of China? Zhou: Since 2002, as far as I can remember, keyword filtering began to appear. The firewall is mainly used to suppress free speech. At first, it was used to filter pornographic sites and Falungong sites. But because the public don't know the details of the firewall procedure, it can easily result in corruption and abuse of power. Many innocent sites, like the open source technology site sourceforge.net, have been blocked for unknown reasons. Interfax: What kind of sites does the firewall usually block? Zhou: Famous Chinese sites in foreign countries, mostly news sites, like Deutsche Welle, political sites and pornographic sites. Interfax: What do you think of the influence of the firewall? Zhou: It has isolated China's Internet from the Internet world and has isolated China from the world. Many Chinese people don't know that the firewall even exists. They care only about stock, money making and real estate. I shout in order to wake as many as possible." Interfax China, 22 June 2007.

Mbeki's Zimbabwe mediation will consider role of VOA.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
In South African President Thabo Mbeki's negotitations between Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu PF and opposition: "On the communication laws the Broadcasting Services Act and external radio stations would be discussed. In its submissions to Mbeki, Zanu PF complained about the Voice of the People which it says is Dutch-funded, SWRA, described as British-sponsored, and the State Department-financed Voice of America's Studio 7." Zimbabwe Independent, 22 June 2007. Zimbabwe's ruling party wants "the cessation of news broadcasts into the country by VOA's Studio 7 and London-based Shortwave Radio Africa." VOA News, 19 June 2007.

House appropriations committee restores funds for U.S. international broadcasting, with conditions.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In providing about $32 million more than 2007 levels for broadcasting, and $14 million above the president's original request, lawmakers provide funding to roll back proposed cuts to specific language programs." VOA News, 20 June 2007. Committee report calls for streaming and archiving of Alhurra content, "the random translation of 20 hours per week of Alhurra's original programming by an independent entity," and an IG investigation. House Report 110-197. "Now the bill moves to the full House and Senate for approval, and it's a lengthy process during which lobbying will continue to ensure the funding remains intact throughout the legislative process." Phayul.com, 21 June 2007. VOA Portuguese to Africa was one of the few services not to have its funding restored. This is unfortunate, as it is one of VOA's most popular and effective services, and it is not duplicated by a "Radio Free" station. See previous post on same subject.

Well, it would be cheaper to let Muslim scholars do it.

Posted: 22 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The problem for the United States is that it cannot fight this ideological war, and any efforts it openly supports -- including the Arabic television station Al Hurra -- are quickly tainted and discredited. The U.S. government, therefore, must sit on the sidelines while moderate Muslim scholars refute the theology of jihadism. Meanwhile, Washington can only hope the message gets through." Fred Burton, Stratfor, 20 June 2007.

Former VOA director Evelyn Lieberman is in the Hillary Clinton camp.

Posted: 21 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Evelyn Lieberman, 62, once a deputy chief of staff for President Bill Clinton and now an official at the Smithsonian, achieved cult status among the disciples for firing Monica Lewinsky before her affair with the president was known, and she remains a trusted adviser. A favorite joke in Hillaryland: If Lieberman invites you for a walk, don't go. It means you're fired." Washington Post, 21 June 2007. Lieberman was VOA director from 1997 to 1999.

New platform for international channels to (wealthy) Africans.

Posted: 21 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"London-based Gateway Communications ... will next month beam its new pay-TV service into Kenya and ... is hoping to rival Africa's largest media company, Naspers, with a pan-African service, said on Wednesday that customers in the world's poorest continent would still pay at least $226 for a satellite dish and decoder and $26 per month to get its new 15-channel GTV service -- for now." Reuters, 21 June 2007.

From Turkey, BBC will blog, Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.

Posted: 21 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The BBC has dispatched reporter Ben Hammersley to spend two weeks using new social media web tools to cover the run-up to [Turkey's] July general election. ... In what is a first for the BBC, Hammersley will file to his personal blog, he will upload photos to Flickr, video to YouTube, post snippets of text to the microblogging site Twitter, bookmark research on the social bookmarking site del.icio.us and network with people through Facebook." Press Gazette, 21 June 2007.

Aljazeera English turns your stomach (updated).

Posted: 21 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Former Marine spokesman who now works for Aljazeera English syas the station "shows it all. It turns your stomach, and you remember there's something wrong with war." Bloomberg, 19 June 2007. Update: “Anyone who served with me gets it. I haven’t lost a single friend from moving over to the media and al-Jazeera. ... It disappoints me as a citizen that Americans are not interested in international news and more interested in stuff like Anna Nicole Smith." Marine Corps Times, 20 June 2007. "I thought Franks should have had an Al Jazeera reporter beside him when he went into Baghdad. I thought that they should have given Al Jazeera amazing access to explain to the world why ... we were doing what we were doing." Democracy Now! 20 June 2007.

The "pirate" stations calling Zimbabwe.

Posted: 20 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Asked about the foreign funding of hostile pirate radio stations like the Voice of America's Studio 7 and SW Radio, (Christopher Dell, outgoing U.S. ambassador to Zimbabwe) confirmed that his government set up VOA's Studio 7 which illegally broadcasts anti-Government propaganda into Zimbabwe. 'I don't know about SW Radio but yes, about the Voice of America, we do fund that," he said.' The pirate radio stations have been accused of broadcasting anti-Government vitriol to whip up people's emotions as part of a regime change agenda." The Herald (Harare), 19 June 2007.

IG report cites improvements at Radio and TV Martí.

Posted: 20 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The review urged the Cuba broadcasting office to create a long-term plan for providing programming in a post-Castro Cuba, as well as how to compete now with the 'Telesur' satellite broadcast, funded by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's government. The review lauded the broadcasting office's use of a Gulfstream jet to beam signals into Cuba, saying it could be replicated in other parts of the world where governments attempt to block U.S. broadcasts." Miami Herald, 20 June 2007.

McCain bandwagon joins the USIA restoration bandwagon.

Posted: 20 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Mr. McCain calls for reestablishing an agency like the United States Information Agency, which oversaw a variety of agencies including the Voice of America radio network before it was merged into the State Department in 1998. 'Dismantling an agency dedicated to promoting America and the American message amounted to unilateral disarmament in the struggle of ideas,' he plans to say. 'Communicating our government’s views on day-to-day issues is what the State Department does. But communicating the idea of America, our purpose, our past and our future is a different task. We need to re-create an independent agency with the sole purpose of getting America’s message to the world. This would aid our efforts in the global struggle against Islamic extremism. It would aid our efforts to communicate accurately with the people of Latin America when some try to propagandize them.'" New York Times, 19 June 2007.

Recommendations for successful U.S. public diplomacy: withdrawal, romance.

Posted: 20 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Until its troops are removed from Iraq, the US will not benefit in the propaganda war from the sympathy of the majority of world Muslims who do not support attacks on civilians, Americans included, according to those same opinion polls. Once the Americans leave Iraq, a weakness in al-Qaida’s position in the propaganda war will be exposed." Mark Rolfe, On Line Opinion, 20 June 2007. "While democracy is filled with romantic allusions, its advocates intentionally avoid this sentiment fearing, I think, the romanticism that inspired totalitarian impulses such as Nazism. But in overlooking the spiritual side of democracy, one negates its essential appeal." Herbert London, The Bulletin, 20 June 2007.

BBC Times Square billboard wins award.

Posted: 20 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"BBC and agency BBDO in New York ended up with one of just two U.S. Gold Lions for their giant billboard launching BBC World, a 24-hour cable news network aiming to rival CNN and Fox News. The display used interactivity to introduce the channel and urge people to demand the channel from their cable provider. The board encouraged people to use their phones to text-message their reactions to news photos. For example, people could pick 'citizens' or 'criminals' for a photo of immigrants at a border and 'occupiers' or 'liberators' for one of U.S. soldiers. About 10,000 votes were cast in four weeks, and results were displayed continuously." USA Today, 19 June 2007.

VOA achieves the coveted "nothing wrong" status.

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Imagine a Voice of Ethiopia radio station that would not be the Voice of America. There is nothing wrong with the Voice of America, but we Ethiopians do not control the content of it. The Voice of Ethiopia radio should be an Ethiopian-run station that would provide programming 24 hours a day and would be aired in every part of Ethiopia and translated into the languages of the local people." nazret.com, 18 June 2007.

U.S. outreach requires an Outreach Center.

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Interview with Michael Pelletier, director of the State Department's public diplomacy hub in Dubai: "Q: Is it fair to say that the establishing of the Regional Media Outreach Center is a result of the failure of US Arabic-language media outlets such as Hi Magazine, which has been suspended, and al Hurra television, the performance of which is being looked in to in the US? Pelletier: I would not say that they have failed. They are still young, evolving projects. They are part of various ways to expand communication and mutual understanding with the Arab world. We try to be supportive of such media outlets." Alsharq Alawsat, 18 June 2007.

Keeping your BBC news programs straight.

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Interview with Rome Hartman, producer of new BBC World news programs mainly for North America: "Q: How will the new newscast differ from the Americanized version of BBC World News, which currently runs on public television? Hartman: There will be two distinct programs. The PBS 30 minutes will continue, and I will have some coordination role in that and any other BBC broadcast that either originates in or is aimed at America. But my primary job is to create an hour-long daily news broadcast that will air at 7:00 on BBC America and will be a signature and distinctive broadcast on BBC America." Broadcasting & Cable, 18 June 2007. See previous post about Hartman.

"Joost Watch Your Back."

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Ovum analyzes IPTV players Joost, Zattoo, Vuze, Jalipo, Ziddio, and Veoh. Daily IPTV, 19 June 2007. This has to do with international broadcasting because if Aljazeera English, France 24, Russia Today, etc., are not available on your local cable system, they might be available via these services.

YouTube multinational.

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
YouTube launches localized versions now exist for the UK, Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United States. ... For now, the international sites draw on the same database of videos and rankings as the US site, but in time Google plans to add country-specific video rankings and comments." PC Advisor, 19 June 2007. See also BBC News, 19 June 2007.

Latest European survey, and the winner is: everybody.

Posted: 19 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Sky News has more upmarket viewers tuning in each day than any other pan-European news channel." Digital Spy, 19 June 2007. "EuroNews is the most watched international news channel by upmarket consumers in Europe." Focus News Agency, 19 June 2007. "CNN is the overall first option for reaching the upscale elite, leading all international news channels in all measurements in EMS Select." CNN press release, 19 June 2007.

This thinker might be interested to know that the United States is already broadcasting to Iran.

Posted: 18 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Radio Free Europe gave hope to millions behind the Iron Curtain in Poland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia and helped spur individuals like Lech Welesa to stand up to Soviet oppression. There is no reason why such efforts cannot work in the Middle East as they did in Eastern Europe." Jonathan D. Strong, American Thinker, 18 June 2007. "The hostility towards Radio Farda is further driven by its status as an offshoot of Radio Free Europe - whose pro-western broadcasts into eastern Europe were credited with undermining communism during the cold war. Tehran fears that the US wants an Iranian version of the protest movements which toppled pro-Soviet regimes." Robert Tait, The Guardian, 18 June 2007. Cultural crackdown in Iran is "broadcast on state television. In one scene a woman in an all-covering black chador, backed by two members of the security forces, approached a fashionably dressed woman and sternly reproached her for not dressing appropriately for an 'Iranian woman.' But more violent footage, often taken by cellphone video cameras, surfaced on the Internet and on satellite channels beamed from abroad, including the U.S.-funded Voice of America." Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times, 10 June 2007.

BBC Trust report: impartiality is good.

Posted: 18 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Broadcasters should report on all views and opinions, however unpopular or extreme some of them may be." BBC Trust press release, 18 June 2007. "The BBC has failed to promote proper debate on major political issues because of the inherent liberal culture of its staff, a report commissioned by the corporation has concluded." The Telegraph, 18 June 2007. "On 16 June SBS news reported that the Arab League meeting had condemned the Hamas takeover in Gaza. The league condemned the situation all right, but it went out of its way not to apportion blame, something that can be verified by checking the actual statement. Only the BBC world service seems to have picked up the difference." Sol Salbe, Webdiary, 18 June 2007. About Liliane Landor, editor, BBC World Service news and current affairs: "Now that I know her better I see that she's very 'World Service'. She's exactly the kind of person I've gravitated towards in the British media, in the sense that she has a cosmopolitan view of the world, is well informed and keeps listening to the person on the ground." Kylie Morris, The Independent, 18 June 2007. Former BBC World Service managing director John Tusa will head Conservative Party committee on the arts in the U.K. Daily Mail, 18 June 2007. Tusa named chairman of the Victoria & Albert Museum. Bloomberg, 18 June 2007. The Dalai Lama listens to BBC World Service during his breakfast of porridge and tea. Canberra Times, 18 June 2007.

Spend more on public diplomacy, or young Asian elites will think you are trash.

Posted: 18 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In January, an Asialink submission to a Senate inquiry into how Australia conducts its public diplomacy found Australia spends 17 cents per person on cultural diplomacy, compared to Germany's $3 and Britain's $19. 'If our literature, art or music are not seen by young members of the educated elite in various Asian countries before the age of, say, 26, they will think of us as white trash and without culture.'" The Age (Melbourne), 18 June 2007.

Watching Telesur.

Posted: 17 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Compared with the Venezuelan government’s main television network, which ruthlessly disparages Mr. Chávez’s critics, Telesur’s tilt left is more moderate. The network’s mission, he said, is 'to advance integration while portraying Latin Americans as we see ourselves.' Cookie-cutter anchors are not part of this project. Instead, a ponytailed journalist with a 5 o’clock shadow discusses the news each morning." New York Times, 16 June 2007.

Did Deutsche Welle call U.S. policies "stupid"?

Posted: 17 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In a recent report, DW Radio declared that the US president was unable to understand core political realities of the Middle East. ... 'US policies in Iraq are stupid' the report declares 'and shows [sic] that George Bush is unable to understand the dimensions of the conflicts in the Middle East'." Iran's official Press TV, 17 June 2007. I can't find this report at the dw-world.de English or German websites.

Revisiting the Defense Department's news-like websites.

Posted: 17 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"For decades, the idea war was fought over the airwaves. Broadcasters used networks such as the U.S.-sponsored Radio Free Europe to send their message behind the Iron Curtain. Today the war has entered a new dimension. It’s being waged on the World Wide Web, as demonstrated by two U.S. European Command-sponsored Web sites, www.magharebia.com and www.setimes.com." Stars and Stripes, 17 June 2007.

Suicide by professionalism?

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The conservative crusade against [recently departed Alhurra news VP Larry] Register demonstrates one of the great difficulties facing any official American broadcasting to the Middle East. To be a free and credible media outlet means allowing critics of American policy to speak and covering news that might make America look bad. ... Register's fate demonstrates that trying to produce a professional news product for the American government means career suicide, and few are likely to try again any time soon." Marc Lynch, comment is free, The Guardian, 16 June 2007. "Alhurra should certainly tell about the president's policies and the opposition to those policies. It shows the Arabic-speaking world that politics is give-and-take. No one, not even the president, is immune from criticism." Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs via The Bulletin (Philadelphia), 15 June 2007.

The VOA brand lives on at the former Bethany transmitting site.

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"More than 3,000 are expected to lay out their blankets and unfold their lawn chairs to enjoy the lakeside [symphony orchestra] performance at what is now Butler County [Ohio] MetroParks' Ronald Reagan Voice of Freedom Park at 7850 VOA Park Drive, where canoe and peddle boat rentals are offered. The park is adjacent to West Chester Twp.'s Voice of America Park. Pending National Park Service approval, the two parks will return under the Voice of America name when 258 acres of VOA is transferred to MetroParks' ownership later this year. The merger of the parks will open the way for future development plans, which Stanbery said he hopes will include an amphitheater where the 'VOA concert at the Lake' could become an annual staple." Dayton Journal News, 16 June 2007. Dogfest this weekend at the Voice of America Park will attract 8,000 dogs and 15,000 people. Oxford (Ohio) Press, 14 June 2007.

YouTube: an increasingly important medium for international broadcasting.

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Google Inc. is gathering some of its top executives in Paris next week for an international press conference and speculation is rife that announcements will include a local version of YouTube for European countries. France 24, a French public TV channel, confirmed Friday that it has been in talks with Google, suggesting the search giant may be lining up local content for its video-sharing service." PC World, 15 June 2007.

Two recent definitions of public diplomacy.

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Fletcher School of law and diplomacy had named this as public diplomacy in 1960’s. It utilizes the influence of public attitudes, opinions and decision making in framing and implementing external policies of a country." The Assam Tribune, 16 June 2007. "Define the public diplomacy mission as promoting U.S. interests and security by understanding, informing, and influencing foreign publics as well as broadening dialogue between American citizens and institutions and their counterparts abroad on a daily, long-term basis." James Jay Carafano and Sally McNamara, Heritage Foundation, 15 June 2007.

Latest public diplomacy strategy: charge foreigners ten dollars to make them feel better about us.

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge released a report Friday recommending charging a $10 fee to certain visitors to the United States and using the revenue to strengthen security and create marketing to increase travel to the United States. ... The proposal would also improve public diplomacy, as U.S. visitors gain a more positive perspective on the country, Ridge said at the National Press Club in Washington." CQ Homeland Security, 15 June 2007.

Radio Free Western Europe?

Posted: 16 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In Berlin, American Jeffrey Gedmin, president of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, has spent a lot of his time busting the stereotypes of Americans pushed by the German media. Gedmin said, 'The intuitive stories are fat children, fast food, death penalty, no culture, Guantanamo. Current topics? Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, Guantanamo, Guantanamo, Guantanamo.'" CBN News, 15 June 2007.

Willis Conover bio and more VOA jazz.

Posted: 15 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Willis Conover: Broadcasting Jazz to the World: A Biography [by Terence M. Ripmaster] ... details Conover’s professional accomplishments in the world of jazz, including the profound impact he had on the Soviet Union and Eastern European Communist nations." iUniverse press relese, 15 June 2007. See also iUniverse catalog entry. Pianist Eldar Djangirov's "father, Emil, was an engineer and jazz aficionado who nearly lost his job at a technical university in the former Soviet Union because he listened to banned Voice of America and BBC broadcasts." Urbana Daily Citizen, 15 June 2007.

Free to do what?

Posted: 15 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"America is facing a growing threat from Latin American totalitarianism and we need to call on those who are most familiar with it to lead the resistance. And the least we can do is free Radio and TV Marti and let them fight for freedom in the realm of ideas." Fred Thmpson, Townhall.com, 14 Hune 2007. Thompson, or his ghostwriter, seems to have a thing for international broadcasting. See previous Thompson essay.

I want my U.S. Public Diplomacy.

Posted: 15 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"I was pleased to see the U.S. State Department push the Fulbright program into the 21st century with four new grants to study global music culture, awarded in collaboration with mtvU, MTV’s 24-7 campus network. It’s a partnership about as unlikely as, say, Condi Rice joining the cast of 'The Real World,' but it just might help give sagging U.S. public diplomacy efforts a shot in the arm." Julia Ross, World Hum, 14 June 2007.

Why we still love radio.

Posted: 15 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"In this age of information technology revolution with its dazzling array of gizmos that keep you connected to the whole world 24x7, it must be an odd man who confesses to be a radio addict. This predilection has survived the constant static nuisance in short-wave listening, shifting frequencies and the everyday plethora of gibberish from the mouth of some announcers and programme presenters. Then there are the many ‘pundits’ who pontificate incoherently on Indian and foreign propaganda stations on every subject under the sun with enviable sangfroid." M Rama Rao, Asian Tribune, 15 June 2007.

RFE/RL faces discrimination suit (updated).

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The daily Lidove noviny writes that Czech courts will probably deal with alleged discrimination against some employees at the US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty based in Prague. The paper refers to the case of Armenian reporter Anna Karapetian who says her dismissal from the radio after 12 years is invalid and has filed a lawsuit against her former employer." Radio Prague, 14 June 2007. Update: Lidove noviny commentator: "Prague's office of the Radio Free Europe promising to promote the ideas of freedom, democracy and law is behaving as an employer as if the proclaimed principles should apply 'only' to the whole world, but not inside this respected institution." CTK, 15 June 2007.

Tomlinson: others involved in Alhurra controversy "should leave."

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Recently departed BBG chairman Kenneth Tomlinson: "Sadly, my colleagues, including Karen Hughes, tried to deny that anything was wrong. I could not — I stood virtually alone in trying to expose this inside government. Fortunately, now people have come to understand what a horrible situation it was. Register has been forced out. And I believe others who are responsible for this should leave." Fox News, 13 June 2007.

Study: Aljazeera and CNN websites not very transparent.

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Study looks at "25 of the world's top news sites to see which ones publicly correct their errors, are open about who owns them, post their staff and reporting policies, and welcome reader comments and criticism." CNN and Aljazeera English among the worst. University of Maryland press release, 13 June 2007. "'It is hard to understand how the authors of the study could have considered the World Service site as the main BBC global news site. This is a fundamental error in methodology. This basic mistake seriously undermines the credibility of its findings.'" journalism.co.uk, 14 June 2007. "The BBC is to release a series of behind-the-scenes videos detailing how it compiles its news packages." journalism.co.uk, 14 June 2007.

Well informed Hausa.

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Today, Hausa services are provided in foreign broadcast stations like British Broadcasting Corporation, [Deutsche Welle] of Germany, Voice of America, China Radio International, RFA of France, Egypt Radio, amongst others. That is the reason why an illiterate Hausa listener addicted to those foreign broadcast stations can easily disappoint students of international relations in a debate/quiz on global politics." Vanguard (Lagos), 14 June 2007.

Messages to and from Iran.

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"This week Paris will host the largest gathering of Iran’s pro-democracy forces ever assembled to overthrow the Islamic Regime through a nonviolent civil disobedience movement. ... Millions of Iranians ... will be following the proceedings with the help of Voice of America, Radio Farda, Radio Israel, BBC, and independent Iranian broadcasters such as Channel One, Pars TV, and Radio Sedaye Iran." National Review Online, 14 June 2007. "Iran's involvement in the PKK/PJAK problem has proven to be a successful public diplomacy tool, winning over Turkish public opinion. Unlike during the 1990s, when most Turks took issue with Tehran due to its support for the PKK and other issues (e.g., the assassination of secular Turkish intellectuals by Islamist terrorist cells), the Turkish media now portrays Iran as a friendly country that is helping Ankara against the PKK. These developments stand in stark contrast to the lack of U.S. action in northern Iraq against the PKK, considered responsible for the deaths of eighty Turks since the beginning of 2007." Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 13 June 2007.

Items from the CNN International file.

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Freeplay Energy Group [creator of the wind-up shortwave radio] selected as one of three social entrepreneurs to be featured on Principal Voices, a CNN International documentary project." Freeplay Energy press release, 14 June 2007. CNN International among the channels available in Hong Kong via PCCW-HKT Telephone's Eye multimedia platform, "a fixed-line solution that delivers a range of content and interactive services to Hong Kong households over an easy-to-use, menu-driven audio and video device. Harnessing the power of PCCW's quadruple-play capability, the always-on eye device - complete with 4.3-inch screen." DMAsia.com, 13 June 2007. Next "World's Untold Stories" on CNN International "will take a look at what Iranians think about (Mahmoud) Ahmadinejad's leadership." Press release via Indiantelevision.com, 13 June 2007.

Selling international broadcasting in Shanghai (updated).

Posted: 14 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Deutsche Welle and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation among foreign entities doing deals at the Shanghai Television Festival. Variety, 8 June 2007. Update: "The EU Pavilion was relatively busy, with Deustche Welle in particular reporting brisk business. Stefan Bliemsrieder, distrib exec with DW TV, reported that they had sold out all 150 hours of new programming by the end of the first day, at prices ranging from $500 an hour to regional broadcasters to around $1,500 for national distrib rights." Variety, 13 June 2007.

Another document for the closet shelf.

Posted: 13 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
A new 34-page Bush administration public diplomacy strategy "has been shared with some members of Congress but not formally released." McClatchy Newspapers, 13 June 2007. "What is the action or the emotion? Are they dancing? Talking? Listening? Learning? Enthusiastic? Include props if that helps convey the story." Strategy document via PoliticalWarfare.org, 6 June 2007. This public diplomacy strategy does, of course, incorporate international broadcasting, and assigns to it impossibly contradictory tasks: 1) attract mass audiences (p 5) by 2) "covering newsworthy events sponsored by government agencies, such as exchange programs, health care, scientific collaboration, and education initiatives" (p 31). Meanwhile, the new PD strategy seems to have begun: Goodwill ambassador Michelle Kwan begins 10-day visit to Russia. Los Angeles Times, 13 June 2007.

Larry Register wished all the best (updated).

Posted: 13 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Q: What is your reaction to Larry Register resigning? You had expressed support for him very recently. Sean McCormack: Yeah. Look, he -- this is a tough job and -- you know, as far as I can tell, he did the job to the best of his ability. I think everybody should thank him for taking on what was a difficult assignment and to wish him all the best in his future endeavors." State Department daily briefing, 11 June 2007. "With Mr. Register's disastrous tenure behind them, the Broadcasting Board of Governors now has an opportunity to implement positive changes to achieve Alhurra's laudable goals." Rep. Steve Rothman press release, 11 June 2007. "The BBG didn't provide Register the time to achieve this balance, and Register did not speak up is his own defense, or perhaps he wanted to but was told not to." Alvin Snyder, USC Center on Public Diplomacy, 11 June 2007. "Do we really want to promote freedom of the press or are we merely using our propaganda to offset their perceived propaganda?" Disputed Truth blog, 11 June 2007. Update:"The task before Al Hurra was almost impossible to begin with: portray America in a fair light to an audience deeply skeptical of all American media. By airing interviews with Bush and other officials explaining U.S. policy in Iraq and elsewhere, the network appeared to confirm Middle Eastern viewers' skepticism of it." Jane Roh, NationalJournal.com/ TheGate, 12 June 2007. See previous post on same subject, and Register's reply.

English news will stay on Israel radio (updated).

Posted: 13 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Israel Broadcasting Authority decided Monday not to cancel its English-language radio news broadcasts, despite earlier threats due to cost-saving measures." Haaretz, 12 June 2007. Update: "The BBC amplifies British power and influence far beyond the confines of Britain's insular borders by broadcasting around the clock to all the world. We need an IBC to do the same for Israel." Elihu D. Richter and other letters, Jerusalem Post, 11 June 2007. See previous post on same subject.

How Apple TV is like a shortwave radio.

Posted: 13 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"When I go home I want to be able to turn on my 55-inch big screen and watch British documentaries and my hometown minor league baseball team and Al Jazeera English and lots of other great content that, for various boring reasons, I can’t get now. And when I see something that I want to tell my readers about, I want them to be able to see it, too—not on their PCs but on their TVs." Aaron Barnhart, Macworld, 12 June 2007.

Arab fellows at CNN International.

Posted: 12 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Three Arab journalists recently participated in the inaugural CNN Journalism Fellowship program at the CNN Headquarters in Atlanta. ... 'One of the best aspects of this program is that it provides an unmatched forum for dialogue and learning, not only between CNN International and the fellows, but also among the fellows themselves.'" Al Bawaba, 12 June 2007.

Can he bring the Katie Couric magic to BBC?

Posted: 12 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The first executive producer of 'CBS Evening News With Katie Couric' has signed on to create a new one-hour BBC World News newscast aimed at U.S. viewers. Rome Hartman, who was reassigned in March as executive producer of Couric's low-rated newscast, will be executive producer of the as-yet unnamed newscast available weeknights on BBC America and BBC World News sometime in the fall." Hollywood Reporter, 12 June 2007. "The new BBC show marks a substantial investment in the U.S. market, and will draw on the pubcaster's global reporting resources for coverage." Variety, 11 June 2007. "It’s a true honour to join what is undoubtedly the best, most ambitious broadcast news organisation in the world." Digital Spy, 11 June 2007.

Register replies -- finally.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Larry Register, recently resigned VP News of Alhurra: "I do not know why Mr. Mowbray and his unnamed sources have singled me out for attack. I have never made professional decisions based on politics or ideology. Rather, at Alhurra, I am privileged to work with outstanding journalists to offer our Arabic speaking audience an important choice -- news and information guided by democracy and free speech." Larry Register, letter to Wall Street Journal, 11 June 2007 or pdf.

Larry Register, beleaguered VP News of Alhurra, resigns.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Daniel Nassif will take over editorial leadership at Alhurra Television, as well as continuing his duties as News Director for Radio Sawa." Middle East Broadcasting Networks Inc press release, 8 June 2007. "Register's letter of resignation, dated Friday, said he had been 'professionally and personally attacked' in the media. 'In good conscience I cannot allow the personal vendettas and attacks to damage the credibility of MBN,' he wrote." AP, 9 June 2007. The 6 June NBC Nightly News story on Alhurra is available at The Raw Story, 8 June 2007. See previous post about same subject. The promised review of this episode must still take place, but now it should expand to consider the conduct of the Broadcasting Board of Governors. Did the BBG eliminate a renegade Arabist? Or did it decide the Alhurra news director must speak Arabic? Or did the BBG buckle to political pressure and abdicate, again, its most important function as firewall between U.S. international broadcasting and the U.S. government?

Presidential candidate comes out against large audiences.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Sam Brownback: "We must overhaul our public diplomacy efforts in Iran and challenge the regime's cynical manipulation of the nuclear issue. The Iranian people should hear that we support their desire for progress and better technology and stand with them in opposing the regime's drive for nuclear weapons. This will require US broadcasts that beam fewer hours of Britney Spears music and spend more time reporting on the regime's corruption and ineffectiveness." Jerusalem Post blog, 7 June 2007.

Well, obviously.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"So why won’t TV Marti go away if it wastes money on a TV signal that doesn’t reach its intended audience? The answer seems to rest on American electoral politics." Mark A. Elrod, Searcy (Arkansas) Daily Citizen, 9 June 2007.

Our public diplomacy versus the terrorists' public diplomacy.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"We can kill with precision and to any scale, but we can’t get out a unified, compelling message to save our lives (literally). Our attempts at public diplomacy are waged by known spin doctors who cavort with collaborators or undermined by diplomats who can’t or won’t get with the program. The enemy’s message, on the other hand, resonates with people globally whether Arab, Filipino or Trinidadian." Michael Tanji, ThreatsWatch, 8 June 2007.

Did RFA get a scoop over archrival VOA?

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Two days after a rare protest by hundreds of middle-class, white-collar residents occurred in Beijing, China's State Environmental Protection Administration criticized the local government's plans to build a controversial waste-treatment plant near Haidian, a populous residential area of the capital, the South China Morning Post reported June 8. Radio Free Asia -- a U.S.-sponsored nonprofit broadcasting entity -- was the only other news source to report on this situation, albeit with a different date. Local news of the protest appears to have been suppressed. Stratfor, 8 June 2007.

Israel Broadcasting Authority would drop English and foreign languages (updated).

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
in emergency cost cutting measure. "Broadcasts in a language they speak are essential for foreign diplomats and other international representatives in Israel." Jerusalem Post, 6 June 2007. "All foreign language broadcasts ... will be suspended, with the striking exception of news in Arabic." Editorial, Jersusalem Post, 6 June 2007. See also letters to Jerusalem Post, 7 June 2007. Update: "Readers have written in from Israel, across Europe, the US, South Africa, Australia, Asia and beyond to urge the IBA to reconsider." Jerusalem Post, 10 June 2007.

TV critic considers BBC Entertainment, now available in India.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"And the verdict is? Phiphty-Phiphty. Which is sad, considering our great expectations. Let’s begin with the good news. Comedies such as My Family are vintage of British humour (read risqué and understated) and good exercise for the lips." But: "There’s not enough variety here. And you simply cannot watch Spoofs every night, good-looking guy or not. Of course, these are early days, but BBC Entertainment will have to offer more and better programming if it is to challenge Star World." Shailaja Bajpai, Newindpress, 8 June 2007.

Russia Today joins other international broadcasters on YouTube (updated).

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"This is the first Russian channel to start this kind of cooperation with YouTube." CNews, 4 June 2007. "Programs from the English-language, 24-hour satellite television station will be available via a branded channel on YouTube and updated daily." Moscow Times, 5 June 2007. Update: "Russia’s new international TV channel Russia Today has discovered Web 2.0. Faced with a distribution challenge, YouTube provides a solution." followthemedia.com, 12 June 2007.

NHK to the USA.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"NHK has recently renewed its program line-ups to target a more global audience, resulting in over 80 percent of its programs available with either English audio or crawlers. ...providing perspectives and reports on the region that are not familiar to American viewers." World Screen, 8 June 2007. See previus post about same subject.

How to do news 24/7.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
European Journalism Training Association (EJTA) "will focus on the impact of 24-hour news channels on journalism and how it is taught. Panels will include experts from Al Jazeera, CNN, Euronews and France 24." ijnet, 8 June 2007.

Shortwave in the news.

Posted: 10 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Religious broadcaster HRVC in Honduras still uses shortwave, in addition to AM, FM, and internet. Maryville (Tennessee) Daily Times (Maryville TN), 9 June 2007. Students at LeTourneau University will help HCJB design a "low-cost hand-held" digital shortwave receiver. Longview (Texas) News-Journal, 9 June 2007. Successful Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) reception at National Association of Shortwave Broadcasters meeting in Elkhart, Indiana. Radio World, 8 June 2007.

More POW shortwave stories.

Posted: 09 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
U.S. POW in Germany during World War II somehow built a shortwave radio and "would listen to radio broadcasts from the NBC or BBC networks, transcribe them and routinely share information about the war with his fellow POWs. As a result, he said, Decker was actually aware the war was over before his German captors were." Opelika-Auburn News, 10 June 2007. The NBC programs were perhaps via the American Broadcasting Station in Europe (ABSIE).

Like trying to maintain a balance between being pregnant and not being pregnant.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"As critics have sometimes asked about Voice of America broadcasts: Is this journalism or propaganda? To that, add the question of how best do you change hearts and minds -- by adhering to U.S. policy, or by showing no fear or favor? 'There has always been controversy over what U.S. international broadcasters should put on the air,' says Larry Hart, spokesman for the Broadcasting Board of Governors, under whose purview Al Hurra falls. 'Our broadcasters are striving to maintain a balance between giving accurate and objective news and information using the highest standards of professional journalism and carrying out the mission mandated by Congress.'" Variety, 8 June 2007. Accurate and objective news, with no interference from the government, is the mission. I wrote about this in my New York Times op-ed on 4 June and also listed four reasons why straight news is necessary and sufficient for successful international broadcasting. The British have understand the concept since before World War II. American decision makers and experts can't quite grasp it.

Fire people at Alhurra, then conduct a review to determine if they were responsible.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Alhurra "should start by firing the editorial regime responsible for these untoward broadcasts. It should make clear that balanced coverage sits atop the agenda." Editorial, Washington Times, 8 June 2007. Joel Mowbray questions State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, who says: "The Broadcasting Board of Governors is having an outside group take a look at Al Hurra and looking at these questions of newsroom procedures, journalistic standards, and how it operates." State daily press briefing, 5 June 2007.

Spies at VOA, and why it shouldn't matter.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"From the early 1950s until the middle of the 1980s, the Voice of America (VOA), based in Washington, D.C, and Radio Free Europe (RFE), which during the Cold War was based in Munich, Germany and is now in the Czech Republic, hired a number of asylum seeking Polish journalists who had previously agreed to spy for the communist regime in Warsaw." Ted Lipien, FreeMediaOnline.org, 8 June 2007. In a properly functioning international broadcasting station, this should not matter. There should not be any classified documents floating around a newsroom, except for those obtained through leaks (rare in the case of VOA). An international broadcast reporter may be in service to a foreign intelligence agency, but he/she would be busy collecting and writing news. His/her output would go through the usual editing process, requiring adherence to journalistic standards, so that anything fishy should be detected and eliminated. The intelligence agency would finally conclude: why should we pay you?"

The military's version of public diplomacy.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Communicating our commitment to the target populations is the function of public diplomacy and strategic communications, involving a joint effort between Central Command and the State Department... . This communication also includes the use of information operations as a counter to extremist propaganda." American Forces Press Service, 7 June 2007. "Civil affairs soldiers are the link between a military commander and the civilian population. The psy ops soldiers give the commander a voice with the locals in an area where military operations are being conducted by using leaflets, loudspeakers and broadcasts. A year ago, the Army decided to separate those forces." Fayetteville (North Carolina) Observer, 7 June 2007.

Rescuing America's image by vetting movies (updated).

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Rep. Diane Watson (D-Los Angeles) ... wants to ship DVDs of classic Hollywood movies overseas, hoping they will reshape an image she believes has been tarnished by the Iraq war." She mentions "National Velvet" and "Lassie Come Home," "both of which were shot in the U.S. but set in England. ... 'I wouldn't want to do "Gone With the Wind." That's not the image I want to promote.'" Los Angeles Times, 2 June 2007. Update: "My legislation is designed to stock libraries of U.S. embassies and consulates with films that promote the American way of life." Reuters, 7 June 2007.

VOA loses its FM outlet in Mogadishu, again.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Shabelle Media Network, Horn Afrik and IQK, a Koranic radio station, were all shut down by a Somali government decree." VOA News, 6 June 2007. Protested by Committee to Protect Journalists, 7 June 2007. The VOA story does not mention that Horn Afrik relayed VOA programs. Now VOA Somali must fall back on its medium wave relay in Djibouti, with iffy reception at the dusk transmission time, or shortwave. The best IBB shortwave site to reach the Horn of Africa was Kavala, Greece, closed last year by the BBG.

Is Aljazeera the new world information order?

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"It’s not just people dictating from Europe what and what not to do. We’re reversing the flow of information from South to North." Mail & Guardian (Johannesburg), 8 June 2007."The American media is reporting extensively on how Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez shut down a TV station he said was anti-Venezuelan. That we will report. But when we shut down al-Jazeera’s ability to broadcast in America, it’s okay?" Ray Hanania, Southwest News-Herald (Chicago), 7 June 2007.

Lest you thought everyone in India already spoke English...

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Last year, media company BBC introduced non-news sites in China to assist its people in learning spoken English. It is now considering similar options in India to add to the tongue-power of the growing tribe of employment seekers. ... The global media group is holding talks to develop non-news sites in English, which can be accessed by people without subscribing to it." Economic Times, 8 June 2007. Perplexing story because, unlike in China, BBC news websites are not banned in India. Nor do they require a subscription.

"Not as bad" is still bad.

Posted: 08 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Powerline telecommunications (PLT), also knowns as power line communications (PLC), or in the United States as broadband over power line (BPL), uses signals "in the high-frequency (3MHz to 30MHz) radio band, also known as the short-wave band. In-building PLT is becoming a serious technology for many applications. The shorter distances make good performance possible and the radio emissions are not as bad as feared." IT Week (UK), 8 June 2007.

For U.S. international broadcasters, good news for now.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
The 5 June markup of the House Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee fully restored funding for the following VOA language services: Albanian, Bosnian; Croatian, Greek, Macedonian, Serbian, Ukrainian, Georgian, Uzbek, Hindi, Cantonese, Thai, and Tibetan. The mark also provides $8 million for VOA English, which more than fully restores the cuts to VOA English radio broadcasts. For Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the mark restores cuts to South Slavic [Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian], Romanian, Kazakh, Russian, and Ukrainian. For radio Free Asia, the mark restores cuts to Tibetan and Cantonese language services. It remains to be seen what the Senate Appropriations Committee will do. In 2006, it agreed with the White House/BBG proposal to cut those services. The two versions never made it to conference because of the distraction of the 2006 election. See my charts of proposed cuts/additions for FY 2008 and not yet implemented but still (mostly) in effect proposal for FY 2007.

Joel Mowbray closer to becoming the BBG's unofficial personnel director.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Al Hurra had asked for -- with the strong support of Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy Karen Hughes -- an additional $11.1 million in funding over fiscal year 2007 levels for new programming. The network didn't get one dime of it. By the time the appropriations process winds its way through Congress, the requested funding could be restored -- but that most likely could happen only if (Alhurra news VP Larry) Register is fired." Joel Mowbray, Power Line blog, 6 June 2007. "Republican [BBG] member Blanquita Cullum issued a short, but refreshingly blunt statement whose first paragraph reads in its entirety: 'It is time for Larry Register to be fired.'" Joel Mowbray, Power Line blog 6 June 2007. Story about the Alhurra controversy on NBC Nightly News, 6 June 2007. "The network has wavered between overly America-friendly and overly America-hostile over the years. Last year, for instance, it overlooked elections in Bahrain and focused instead on President Bush’s Thanksgiving address to the American troops." Matthew Felling, CBS News Public Eye, 7 June 2007.

A brief history of VOA relay stations in Africa.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"As a matter of precedence and historical context, Liberia has hosted one of several U.S. government owned OMEGA Navigational Satellite Earth Stations in Wehn Town and the Voice of America (VOA) Relay Station were considered strategic to the interests of the U.S. and heavily utilized in years prior to the civil strife.The VOA operation folded just prior to the war and relocated to Sao Tome. Botswana, considered a relatively stable country has hosted a VOA Relay Station for over 25 years." Running Africa, 7 June 2007.

Russia Today to northern Europe via (the European) Sirius satellite.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Everyone interested in developments in Russia and in international news from a Russian perspective now has the opportunity to keep up to date. From 31 May the Russian news channel Russia Today is broadcast via the Sirius satellite system to viewers in the Nordic and Baltic countries. Russia Today is broadcast free to air, i.e. unencrypted, so there is no need for a smart card to be able to receive the channel. A digital satellite receiver and a dish directed at Sirius at 5 degrees east is all it takes." SES Sirius press release, 7 June 2007.

Radio free abductees.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Japanese government will launch a radio channel for North Korea focusing on Japanese citizens abducted by Pyongyang. ... The new state-run Japanese radio will focus on the Japanese government's position on the abduction issue, messages from victims’ families, and efforts to have them sent back to Japan." Chosun Ilbo, 7 June 2007.

Charges against DW reporters in Uzbekistan dropped?

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Die Deutsche Welle web site reports charges against its correspondents in Uzbekistan Yuri Chernogayev, Sajera Ruzikulova, and Obid Shabanov dropped. They were initially accused of work without accreditation, tax evasion, slander against the president, and prejudiced reports on the events in Uzbekistan." Turkish Weekly, 7 June 2007. I can't find that report at the DW website.

RFE/RL interviews its reporter Parnaz Azima, detained in Iran.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"I gave an example to [the authorities] who interrogated me: news organizations such as the BBC, CNN, and others that are based in foreign countries, the governments of [these countries] can also accuse them of propaganda against them because they bring the voice of opposition forces to their [audience] -- and even the voice of those who are against the policies of the U.S. government." Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty News, 6 June 2007. Iranian judge Hossein Haddad "said Azima was accused of working with 'anti-revolutionary' radio stations, including U.S.-funded Radio Farda." Reuters, 6 June 2007. "Despite her pledges to stop working for this radio, she has continued to do so." AFP, 7 June 2007. She said "that her lawyers and Iranian officials have warned that her case could take years to resolve and appealed to the State Department to keep pressure on Tehran." Washington Post, 7 June 2007. "The Bush Administration had trumpeted its $61.1 million democracy program, including Farsi-language broadcasts into Iran." Time, 5 June 2007.

Yearning for the old USIA, and its reabsorption of U.S. international broadcasting.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The US public diplomacy effort involves a variety of other techniques, including radio and TV broadcasting, the Internet, foreign-based information officers, and speeches and question-and-answer sessions with senior officials. Its funding and operations have been much reduced since the United States Information Agency (USIA), which ran these programs, was phased out after the cold war. The remnants of that agency were integrated with the State Department. The challenges besetting the US today require that the USIA, or a replica of it, be formed to bring focus and strategic planning to America's public diplomacy." John Hughes, Christian Science Monitor, 6 June 2007. As I have written before, the old USIA was in step with U.S. policies, it operated through U.S. embassies, its activities in country were approved by the U.S. ambassador, and its overseas personnel were Foreign Service officers. So why the need for an "independent" agency? What the "independent" USIA did manage to do on several occasions was to deprive the Voice of America, which was under USIA, of the independence necessary to achieve the credibility required for success in international broadcasting. The reestablishment of USIA would create an entire suite full of senior level federal jobs, but it will take more than a boondoggle to restore America's image in the world.

Success for U.S. international broadcasting in India -- at no cost to U.S. taxpayers.

Posted: 07 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Discovery Channel has emerged as the most-watched English channel in India... . In the SEC A-B 15-44 age bracket male category, Discovery’s channel share is at a staggering 37%, many times higher than hardcore news channels like NDTV 24X7(14%), CNBC-TV18, CNN-IBN (both 13%), Times Now (9%), NDTV Profit (7%), Headlines Today (5%), BBC World and CNN (1% each). Financial Express, 6 June 2007.

Of course, it depends on who the outside reviewers are.

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The government's Arabic-language satellite television network is seeking an outside review after recent broadcasts that included broadsides and inflammatory language referring to Israel or Jews. Overseers of the U.S.-funded Al-Hurra network have acknowledged mistakes, even as they defended the journalistic principle of airing views critical of the United States or its allies." AP, 5 June 2007.

Why "just straight journalism" is good enough for U.S. international broadcasting.

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
The crackpot commentator weighs in on the Alhurra controversy and responds to the contention by Rep. Mike Pence that U.S. international broadcasting should go beyond "we report, you decide." New York Times, 4 June 2007. In the article as submitted to the Times, crackpot commentator lists four reasons why the U.S. government should fund the elements of U.S. international broadcasting while "giving them the independence necessary to provide a credible news product."

Joel Mowbray tries a fourth Wall Sreet Journal op-ed to get Larry Register fired.

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"This week, the House panel responsible for funding the State Department and all international broadcasters takes up its fiscal year 2008 spending bill. Nine of the 13 members of the Appropriations subcommittee on Foreign Operations have already demanded that [Alhurra news VP Larry] Register's employment be terminated, and now they have an opportunity to hand State and the BBG an ultimatum." Joel Mowbray, WSJ, 4 June 2007. See also Stand Up America blog, 5 June 2007.

WorldSpace completes refinancing, tries to enter South African market (updated).

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"We now have the runway to execute our streamlined 2007 plan. The Company is determined to make the most of our opportunities, particularly in Europe, where we continue to focus on readying the Italian business, and India, and hope to return to the markets with significant business achievements." WorldSpace press release, 4 June 2007. "The government requirement for licenses requires at least 80% South African ownership and WorldSpace is 100% foreign-owned. ... It would appear that government considers that WorldSpace provides Africa with such an important service that it may waive the regulations for this organisation." ScreenAfrica.com, 4 June 2007. Update Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) "hearings began controversially with the withdrawal of Worldspace SA from the licence application process, following a determination from the Minister of Communication Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri, who asked Icasa to allow Worldspace to continue broadcasting until a long-term solution to their lack of a licence had been found. Some analysts have queried whether this interference by the minister could be seen to be eroding Icasa’s independence." Mail & Guardian, 4 June 2007. WorldSpace loses about 13,000 subscribers in Kenya with loss of contract with Kenya Institute of Education. The EastAfrican, 4 June 2007.

Lord Ashdown, international broadcaster.

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The former UK High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, special representative to the EU, one-time leader of the Liberal Democrats and ex-Royal Marine ... has undertaken ... a four-part series for the BBC World Service, due to start on 11 June, that will look at conflict and reconciliation attempts in four different countries: El Salvador, Bosnia, Germany and Iraq." The Independent, 4 June 2007.

Shortwave in 1967, 2007.

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"I do remember the Six-Day War, 40 years ago this week, when Israel crushed the assembled armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria, seizing Jerusalem, too. My father had a Hammarlund Super-Pro shortwave radio, and in that time before 24-hour TV news, we'd find out what was going on in the world through the BBC. My grandparents were over at our house for my 7th birthday, and we clustered around the crackling shortwave to hear the war news -- a scene out of a vanished era." Neil Steinberg, Chicago Sun-Times, 4 June 2007. Meanwhile, in 2007, the Coast Guard is asking the maritime community if it should continue to provide weather reports via shortwave. Sail-World, 3 June 2007.

Wifi radio cuts through national barriers (until the internet is blocked).

Posted: 05 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"When it comes to traditional FM radio, countries are still doing their best to wall off their borders despite listener demand for choice. France just shut out three English language stations, including the BBC, that were seeking to operate out of Paris. ... But national cultural protectionism is going to be battered down by new technology. Jonathan Marks, a radio consultant in the Netherlands who explores the future in his blog, Critical Distance, tells me that the easiest way to circumvent national rules at the moment is to invest in a Wifi radio, which is still pricey, costing about 220 euros." International Herald Tribune MetaMedia blog, 4 June 2007. Asustek "showed off two Internet radios that operate from wireless Internet connections. They don't need to be hooked up to a PC. The main difference between the two is that the Asustek Internet Radio 3 (AIR 3), comes with an iPod dock on top" InfoWorld, 4 June 2007.

Differing reports on Bush visit to RFE/RL.

Posted: 04 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"U.S. President George Bush most probably will not visit the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) headquarters in Prague on Tuesday, reliable diplomatic sources told." CTK, 1 June 2007. Too bad. It would be a good venue to express support for the four Iranian-Americans detained in Iran, including Parnaz Azima of Radio Farda. But: "At the Radio Free Europe building in Prague on Tuesday, the president is delivering a speech on the importance of supporting democratic aspirations and meeting with current and former dissidents from around the world." AP, 4 June 2007. No mention of any visit at RFE/RL News, 4 June 2007. See previous post aboput same subject.

The dangerous profession, continued (updated).

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Another Iraqi correspondent for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Nazar Abd al-Wahid al-Radhi, was shot and killed in the southern Iraqi city of Al-Amarah this morning, the second RFE/RL correspondent to die in Iraq in less than two months." RFE/RL News, 30 May 2007. See also RFE/RL press release, 30 May 2007. Update: "A cameraman for the U.S.-funded Arabic satellite news channel Al Hurra was killed during the fighting in Amariya on Thursday." Los Angeles Times, 2 June 2007.

Satellite radio to India: more quality than quantity.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Neelam Dhawan, managing director, Microsoft India "has confessed to being partial to music and likes to listen to old classics and WorldSpace radio." DQ Channels, 2 June 2007. "Radio Indigo Bangalore (RIB) ... started its operations with WorldSpace four years ago, but with satellite radios low penetration and also it being subscription driven, their reach was considerably cramped. With the announcement of 2nd phase of Radio licensing they got off WorldSpace on 31 March 2005 and decided to wait for FM radio till they began started transmitting officially in September 2006." Indiantelevision.com, 2 June 2007.

DW commentator takes dig at Bush climate plan.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"An independent commentator for [Deutsche Welle] asked of Mr Bush: 'Who takes this man seriously?' Mrs Merkel, he noted, had simply described the president's [surprise climate plan] as an important statement. 'What else could she do? The rug is being pulled out from under her feet - 12 months of hard bilateral and multilateral negotiation may have been wasted, but still Merkel has to remain diplomatic.'" Irish Independent, 2 June 2007. See the Rolf Wenkel commentary: Deutsche Welle, 1 June 2007.

Gospel pirate radio in Sana'a.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"A short-wave radio broadcast has been broadcasting illegally in Sana’a by hijacking the 88.3 FM frequency. The broadcast delivers a Christian missionary message in the Arabic language without having any license... . It is coming from a house in one of the capital’s residential zones." Yemen Observer, 3 June 2007.

A hypodermic theory of public diplomacy.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
Bill Frist: "I want to inject global health as a major fundamental part of U.S. public diplomacy around the world and to help people understand that health diplomacy can be an important part of our national security and clearly can contribute to a better understanding of the U.S. in world opinion. Instead of having an imperial U.S., we have a caring U.S." Gannett, 3 June 2007.

The author of Charm Offensive's byline offensive.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"While the United States has created fortress-like embassies and retreated from public diplomacy, Beijing promotes Chinese culture and language across the African continent." Joshua Kurlantzick, Boston Globe, 3 June 2007. "After years of Chinese officials traveling across the world wooing ethnic Chinese organizations, many diaspora Chinese are shocked by the welcome they get when they finally travel to the People’s Republic." Joshua Kurlantzick, Foreign Policy in Focus, 1 June 2007. China Radio International is among several Chinese broadcasting organizations in Brunei to cover "relations between China and ASEAN countries." BruneiDirect.com, 1 June 2007.

BBC World Service is not on FM everywhere.

Posted: 03 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"At KERA in Dallas [new public radio program] 'Fair Game' replaced 'BBC World Service' at 11 p.m. and has raised listenership by 58 percent. KERA initially heard grumbling from people who missed the BBC, said the station’s program director, Jeff Ramirez, but now 'the main complaint is that people wish it were on earlier.'" New York Times, 3 June 2007. "It is quite embarrassing that the BBC World Service is off-air here in Nakuru town and its sorrounding areas. I am really upset about this and like the rest of Nakuru residents, I cannot get access to the news and all interesting programmes on the World Service. It is absurd that one of the largest urban centres in the country is not covered by this famous service yet millions of Kenyans elsewhere are enjoing everything on the BBC." Walter Langat letter to Kenya Times, 3 June 2007.

Algo nuevo desde VOA.

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"VOA Noticias is a 22-minute live newscast from Washington Monday through Friday. Its format enables it to be used in its entirety or in segments. On weekends, it provides a news summary of the top stories and highlights of the week." Voice of America, 1 June 2007.

Fills the hours where VOA worldwide English will no longer be?

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Voice of America (VOA) has launched African Music Mix, a continuous stream of African music favorites, available to African listeners, every day of the week. ... 'VOA is the only radio station that offers such a rich blend of African music from around the continent... You can't get this anywhere else.'" Schedule: Daily 0000-0300 and Monday-Friday 1100-1400 UTC. VOA press release, 1 June 2007.

With friends like Fred Thompson...

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"It’s equally tragic that the U.S. is in no position to provide the victims of [Hugo Chavez] with the truth. There was a time, though, when Americans were on the front lines of pro-freedom movements all over the world. I'm talking about the “surrogate” broadcast network that included Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, often called 'the Radios.' When Ronald Reagan was elected, he greatly empowered the private, congressionally funded effort and handpicked the Radios’ top staff to bring freedom to the Soviet Union. Steve Forbes led the group." Fred Thompson, Townhall.com, 1 June 2007. Credibility is the most important ingredient of successful international broadcasting. I can't think of a more efficient credibility-buster than a claim that an international broadcaster's top staff is *handpicked* by a head of government.

Alhurra chided, cited.

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Whether from ignorance, ineptitude, malfeasance or all three, Al Hurra has become today’s symbol of America’s failed dream: to export itself." TheTrumpet.com, 1 June 2007. "U.S.-funded Alhurra television reported that non-Iraqi Arabs and Afghans were among the fighters over the last two days." AP, 1 June 2007.
"The Iraqi minister of foreign affairs, Hushyar Zibari, made comments hinting that the Mahdi Army may be behind the kidnapping [of five British nationals], but Az-Zaman quoted al-Hurra television, which claimed that Zibari denied that he made any such accusations." Iraq Slogger, 30 May 2007.

CPJ supports Parnaz Azima, who refused to spy on RFE/RL (updated).

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on Iranian authorities to drop criminal charges against an Iranian-American journalist working for U.S.-backed Radio Farda, to return the journalist’s seized passport, and to allow her to travel freely." CPJ, 30 May 2007. "If they let her go out and leave Iran, she would be expected to make reports on her work for Radio Free Europe, Radio Liberty, or otherwise basically spy on us back to Iran. She refused to do so and immediately informed us." Jeff Trimble of RFE/RL, interviewed on Fox News, 29 May 2007. "Last year, the administration requested and received $75 million from Congress to 'bring' democracy to Iran. Some of the $75 million has been devoted to the U.S.-funded Radio Farda, Voice of America and Radio Free Europe, as well as to VOA satellite TV, which are beaming Persian programs into Iran. ... But Iranian reformists believe that democracy can't be imported. It must be indigenous." Shirin Ebadi and Muhammad Sahimi, International Herald Tribune, 30 May 2007. Update: "Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty President Jeffrey Gedmin blasted the Tehran regime for its heavy-handed behavior: 'There is absolutely no reason for Iranian authorities to be treating Ms. Azima in this way. She was traveling to Iran on private business when her passport was seized. I find it ludicrous that Iranian authorities feel the need to criminalize a daughter's desire to visit her severely ill mother.'" Kim R. Holmes and James Phillips, Heritage Foundation, 31 May 2007. "Gedmin calls the tactics of the Iranian authorities 'psychological warfare.'" Prague Post, 30 May 2007. "Experts say the allocation of U.S. funds toward civil society taints those Iranian activists and academics who receive them because of the source: the U.S. government." Council on Foreign Relations, 31 May 2007.

Test transmissions from the new Voice of Zimbabwe (updated).

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
"Authorities in Zimbabwe announced Sunday that a new shortwave radio station, Voice of Zimbabwe, was launched to counter Western news reports on the deteriorating economic and political situation inside the country. The government already runs four radio stations in Zimbabwe, which - like local state-controlled newspapers - stick to the official line. But authorities have been incensed by at least three foreign-based shortwave radio stations that beam news and views highly critical of 83-year-old Mugabe into the country." The Independent, 28 May 2007. "The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings made a major breakthrough on Friday when it launched a short wave radio and television station which will broadcast to all corners of the world. ... General manager of the new station, Voice of Zimbabwe/ TV Channel 104, Cde Happison Muchechetere, told The Sunday Mail that the test would run for the next three weeks during which time management will be fine tuning programming and receiving feedback from listeners from all over the world." The Sunday Mail (Harare, official), 27 May 2007. Shortwave DXers reporting to Hard Core DX are hearing what they believe are test transmissions from Voice of Zimbabwe it on 4828 kHz, alternating with 5975 kHz. See also DX Listening Digest, 27 May 2007. And BBC Monitoring via Radio Netherlands Media Network, 26 May 2007. Update: "It could drive you crazy and nuts -- with deadly boredom!" Bornwell Chakaodza, Financial Gazette (Harare), 30 May 2007.

International television to the Washington suburbs.

Posted: 01 Jun 2007   Print   Send a link
MHz Networks is distributing following channels to Cox digital cable subscribers in Washington area: "France 24 (in English), Russia Today (in English), Japan's NHK World (in English), Russian World (with English subtitles), Nigerian Television Authority (in English), Dutch BVN (in Dutch and some English features), Taiwan's Mac TV (in English) and MHz Worldview, MHz's flagship channel featuring the best international programs in one channel." MHz Networks press release, 31 May 2007.