Listen to NPR's foreign editor describe VOA as "a bit propagandistic."

Posted: 16 Dec 2010   Print   Send a link
In the questions following the first panel of International Broadcasting and Public Media: Mission and Innovation in the Digital Environment, an event at the New American Foundation on 8 December (see previous post), Joe Bruns, now of public broadcaster WETA, formerly of VOA, asked if there was potential for a newsgathering partnership between NPR (National Public Radio) and the Voice of America. Panelist Loren Jenkins, foreign editor of NPR, disagreed with the proposition, because "VOA is there to give the American government's message to the rest of the world and, if you'll excuse the labeling, it's a bit propagandistic." Steve Redisch, executive editor of VOA, disagreed about "propagandistic," but was also skeptical about the potential for a partnership. Listen to audio excerpt.

Read this summary of the event by retired VOA deputy director Alan Heil.

Epoch Times, 12 Dec 2010, Andrea Hayley: "Voice of America (VOA), and Radio Free Asia (RFA) are both radio stations broadcasting internationally with very specific mandates under the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). The two stations’ explicit affiliation with the BBG leaves them susceptible to the perception of being government-controlled. NPR, broadcasting within the United States, is funded in part by the government, but with the majority coming from a combination of foundations, public institutions, individuals, and businesses."

Broadcasting Board of Governors press release, 10 Dec 2010: “'We want to make sure we’re not behind the curve on how people get information', [BBG member Dana] Perino said. 'We’re looking into ways to engage people, and we are trying to be innovative and use the money that we have more effectively.' Perino highlighted the Board’s recently launched strategic review which encompasses all aspects of U.S. international broadcasting. She encouraged participants to provide input during the public comment process."