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title:
USAID's media assistance: strengthening independent radio in Indonesia
author(s):
year:
2005
place:
Washington, DC
publisher:
pages:
vi, 22 p.
collation:
abbrev.
series:
comment:
"The democratic transition in Indonesia after the fall of the Suharto regime brought about important liberalization of the media sector. Focusing on radio as an effective medium for increasing citizen engagement with the political process and improving government accountability, USAID selected Internews to provide journalism training; management, sales, and marketing training; public affairs programming; institutional support, including provision of digital recording and editing equipment, internet access, and technical help; and building media law expertise and capacity. USAID′s 2004 assessment of the nature and focus of the Internews program, its achievements and limitations, and its Summaryoverall contribution to the independent radio subsector concluded that USAID media assistance made a tangible difference to the Indonesian radio subsector. The assessment team found that the program improved and expanded news coverage and upgraded professional skills in the radio subsector. The USAID-funded Internews program also pioneered development of media law capacity and expertise. Morover, by helping citizens engage the political process through interactive radio and emphasizing local news for local communities, the program contributed to consolidating Indonesia′s democratic gains and helped subvert the top-down information flow model that characterized the Suharto era. Despite these positive developments, challenges lie ahead. Radio station owners can exert pressure on journalists to slant coverage—as can large conglomerates, the military, and other vested interests—and journalists′ low wages continue to make bribery an inescapable reality for many. Smaller stations still have limited access to newer equipment. And while physical violence against journalists has diminished, subtler forms of press control remain, including litigation and self-censorship. Overlooking such lingering and emerging issues could endanger the significant gains of the past six years." (executive summary)
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E-Lib
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