Hot Topic - International Broadcasting
There are many survival rules for media executives. One is never embarrass the boss or his wife. Another, more important, is never upstage the boss. There are no cultural exceptions.
International broadcasting remains an important element of soft power diplomacy. Nations want to tell their story to peoples around the world. Those goals remain the same even as the means of telling those stories has changed dramatically.
Powerful people play tough because they know that’s the way the game is played. Mixing politics and media with ego and hubris can create a high-tech war zone. This story is about the tricks, trials and collateral damage.
When the UK government announced last September it would end its £272 million annual grant for BBC World Service radio we ran the headline, “What Becomes of BBC World Radio” and four months later we now have the answer – the closing of five language services and savage cuts at the remaining 26. But in today’s media world, does it matter?
The digital age has spawned media models galore. There are many to choose from. There’s the internet free-for-all model. There’s Mr. Murdoch’s pay-for-everything model. There’s also the Chinese model.
As part of the UK government’s massive spending cuts announced Wednesday the BBC license fee of £145.50 (€160, $220) is going to remain frozen for the next six years, but the public broadcaster is losing its Foreign Office grant of some £272 million (€297 million, $412 million) that annually funds its World Service radio.
What do you do if you’re a nation that doesn’t think the world’s 24-hour English language global news networks are giving you a fair shake? Simple, you start your own English news channel. All you need is money and that’s what governments print so, no problem even in these days of counting pennies.
See also in ftm Knowledge
International Broadcasting - Platforms and Politics
International broadcasting is more than voices across borders. It's moved to television and the Web. Legacy broadcasters are reducing their footprint while newcomers are expanding. This ftm Knowledge file looks at all sides. 55 pages PDF (July 2011)
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Media Laws-Digital Dividend – new
Lawmakers and lawyers are challlenged by the new digital reality. We've seen new rules proposed, enacted, dismissed and changed as quickly as technology takes a new turn. The ftm Knowledge file looks at the grand plans and their consequences. 76 pages PDF April 2013
Europe’s Radio – Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe’s radio writes new rules. In fact, most everything about radio in this region is new... and changes often. The ftm Knowledge file reports on Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia and Ukraine. 159 pages PDF (April 2013)
Social Media Matures (...maybe...)
Hundreds of millions use social media. It has spawned revolutions, excited investors and confounded traditional media. With all that attention a business model remains unclear or it's simply so different many can't see it. What is clear is that there's no turning back. 68 pages, PDF (February 2013)
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