Heritage Foundation Panel Discusses Radio Silence in China: VOA Abandons the Airwaves
Participants in a panel discussion organized this week in Washington by the Heritage Foundation criticized the Broadcasting Board of Governors’s (BBG) plan to end Voice of America (VOA) radio and TV broadcasts to China in Mandarin and Cantonese as a retreat for U.S. international broadcasting, public diplomacy, and journalism in support of human rights.
A video of the discussion is available at the Heritage Foundation website.
The panel was moderated by Dr. Helle Dale, Senior Fellow for Public Diplomacy (photo). The panelists were: former Voice of America Director David Jackson, VOA Chinese Branch Senior Editor Huchen Zhang, and Dan Dickey, President of Continental Electronics.
From the Heritage Foundation website — On October 1, Voice of America’s Chinese radio service will go silent, as U.S. international broadcasting abandons the airwaves and moves to the Internet. In the burgeoning age of new media, many, including Voice of America, seem to be questioning the continued relevance of shortwave radio. Yet, while the Internet offers great potential, U.S. public diplomacy cannot rest exclusively on the use of a single platform. This is particularly true where the prevalence of internet censorship is high. Just this month, for instance, China announced the creation of its State Internet Information Office (SIIO), intended to further expand and enhance China’s information dissemination policy, and leading many to question whether abandoning the airwaves is truly the best way to reach America’s audiences throughout the world. Join us as our guests discuss current U.S. strategy and the way forward in international broadcasting.