A Blog on Understanding, Informing, Empowering, and Influencing Global Publics, published by Matt Armstrong

Looking for a headline aggregator for Europe? The Rundown is one of the best

Are you looking for a headline aggregator covering Europe, Russia, and South Central Asia?  The Rundown, compiled by Zach (@ZachPrague) at Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), is one of the best.  The mission of RFE/RL is to “promote democratic values and institutions by reporting the news in countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established.”  Naturally, the headlines Zach gathers focus on this mission.

There’s another twist to The Rundown: the first section, “RFE/RL in the Media,” can often be subtitled “Smith-Mundt Violations” as it spotlights stories global media that cite RFE/RL reporting or report on RFE/RL activities.  When the media citing RFE/RL is in the U.S. that is a Smith-Mundt Act violation, according to the amended Act and not the original legislation.

For example, the following is in today’s Rundown:

# “The Atlantic” cites RFE/RL reporting on Turkmenistan
# “CNET” cites RFE/RL reporting on Internet restrictions in Iran

On that note, if you’re in the U.S., don’t click on any of the links above, let alone visit RFE/RL’s website, as Senator Fulbright and Senator Zorinsky successfully pushed legislation making it illegal for that  information to be available to you, a person in the United States.  (The legislation doesn’t discriminate on citizenship, so whether you’re American or not, don’t do it.)

If you want to get The Rundown, leave a comment below or email me and I’ll forward your email to Zach, as he sends a daily email of The Rundown.  It would be nice if RFE/RL had a convenient URL for The Rundown, something like http://rferl.org/rundown, but no.  You must know the URL to each individual Rundown or just navigate the website (from the home page, click Press Room then The Rundown).

  • Martins Zvaners says:

    Hi Matt,

    The address to reach an archive page / homepage for “The Rundown” is:


    rgds, Martins

    January 9, 2012 at 10:52 am
  • Matt Armstrong says:

    Martins, please confirm that the URL you gave is for the current Rundown at any given date. In other words, tomorrow I will click on that URL and get Zach’s Rundown for January 10 or will I get January 9′s Rundown? Either way, it is not a simple URL for the user and I still recommend RFE/RL make a landing page with some crazy address like rferl.org/rundown.

    January 9, 2012 at 10:59 am
  • Martins Zvaners says:

    Hi Matt,

    Yes, that page features the most recent “Rundown,” with previous issues moving down the list as each new “Rundown” is posted.

    rgds, Martins

    January 9, 2012 at 11:12 am
  • Matt Armstrong says:

    Martins, good to hear. Still, a simplified URL – even if only a redirect – would be great…

    January 9, 2012 at 11:15 am

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