The UNdiplomatic blog on public diplomacy and international communication
Monday, December 9, 2013
Putin Overhauls Russia's International Broadcasting: Back to Propaganda 1.0?
Today, Russia-watchers woke up to the news that Putin has
issued a decree
ordering the dissolution of
Voice of Russia
and establishing - instead - a new media giant to be called "Russia Today" [
] (and this one is different and altogether separate from
- the TV network - which initially started as "Russia Today" but later formally changed its name to "RT"). The overhaul was not only aimed at these two agencies, which have been there since the early Soviet years. It also
affected several other publishing houses and news/wire organizations
, and was supposedly
aimed at "improving cost-effectiveness and efficiency ahead of budget reductions in 2014 for state-run information resources."
This new Russia Today's task will be to improve Russia's image abroad (again?!).
This was not the only shocker, though. Perhaps in an even more controversial - yet unsurprising - move,
Putin appointed Dmitry Kiselev
] to head this new agency. Kiselev, who is a prominent Russian reporter and TV anchor, and has - in the past several years - served as Deputy General of the state-owned
All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company
, certainly has the prominence and the approval that have put him there. Apparently, Kiselev can also claim international broadcasting experience, h
aving worked at the Norwegian and Polish Bureaus of the Foreign Broadcasting Center of USSR State Committee for Television and Radio Broadcasting
[I know, it's a mouthful].
There are several major issues with this emerging picture:
Read more »»
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