US

What Would Make Contesting Better?

During the worst of radio’s doldrums, radio contesting was as disheartening as its music or personality components. When promotions weren’t sidelined by budget or COVID concerns, they were almost always national contests with text-to-win codewords.  Some stations and personalities pumped more excitement into text-to-win than others. For me, there was always something missing if you […] […]

ASIA

Bangladesh Betar website continues to be down amid unrest

As the unrest in Bangladesh continues with violent protests which saw the state broadcaster Bangladesh TV being burnt down last week, public radio Bangladesh Betar’s website is still silent.The government cracked down heavily on students who were protesting quotas reserving 30% of government jobs for veterans who fought in the 1971 independence war and their children.The internet and all forms of telecommunications were shut down last week and there was a complete information blackout.

While the Bangladesh Betar building was safe, the internet shutdown took down their stream and it continues to be offline at the time of the publishing of this story.A staff member told radioinfo: “There were no internet connection in the country since 8:30PM local time on Thursday. Apparently there were clashes between students and law enforcement agencies, but things spiralled out of control as vested quarters got involved and there were fire and robberies across various government offices.”“Then the country went into curfew from 12 midnight on Friday and is still ongoing. But during daytime for 4-5 hours curfew gets relaxed and people can go out.”“Our offices resumed from today. Bangladesh Television are a separate entity under Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and have their own station separated from Betar. On Wednesday, some miscreants went into BTV station in Dhaka and did a lot of damage to some offices. They set fire on some places inside. Damages are still being assessed.”The country’s Information and Broadcasting Minister has also visited the site.

Meanwhile the UN Human Rights Chief Volker Türk has asked the government to disclose full details about last week’s crackdown amid growing accounts of horrific violence, and to ensure all law enforcement operations abide by international human rights norms and standards. He also called on the government to restore full internet access to allow all people, including journalists and media outlets, to communicate freely and in line with international law. […]

ASIA

Taliban have shut down seven media outlets this year: AFJC

The Afghanistan Journalists Center (AFJC) has released its findings on media freedom violations in Afghanistan for the first six months of 2024, reporting that seven media outlets have been shut down in the first half of 2024 under Taliban orders.These include two private television stations in Kabul, two radio stations in Ghazni, one radio station in Parwan, one radio station in Laghman, and one radio station in Khost province. Three of these closures have been temporary, while the rest remain permanently shut down.According to the AFJC, a total of 89 cases of violations of journalists’ and media rights were recorded in various provinces across the country from January to June 2024.

The findings highlighted an increase in pressure on private and independent media, with the Taliban authorities closely monitoring media content and interfering in the operations of local media outlets. There have been threats against journalists and local private radio and television networks in the provinces that broadcast content featuring women’s voices or musical backgrounds.Journalists who cooperate with exile media that covers Afghanistan issues have also been receiving warnings.According to the report: “Local journalists can only collaborate with national media by obtaining approval from local authorities. This pressure extends to the publication of any content on social networks and personal accounts of journalists.”AFJC has urged the Taliban authorities to reconsider their media policy, stop making unwarranted demands on journalists and media organizations, and establish a climate that is devoid of fear and self-censorship.Photo: AFJC Press Release        Credit: Victor J. Blue for The New York Times […]