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  • BBG,  Guest Posts

    Whisper of America?

    "Under the Obama administration’s proposed FY 13 budget, the potential damage to the nation’s flagship publicly funded overseas network, the Voice of America, would be unprecedented if Congress approves it.  Contrast the reductions:  VOA faces net cuts totaling $17 million, compared with a reduction of $731,000 for its sister network, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty."

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    US International Broadcasting: Success Requires Independence and Consolidation

    By Kim Andrew Elliott Matt Armstrong has asked for a discussion on the future of the U.S. International Broadcasting (USIB) and the structure and purpose of the Broadcasting Board of Governors. For the past quarter century, I have been writing about US international broadcasting at the macro level. The two pillars of my proposals have always been independence and consolidation. Independence First, US international broadcasting must be under a bipartisan or nonpartisan board that shields it from direct US Government control and interference. There is no substitute for this. The world’s great public broadcasting corporations, including the BBC, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, are seen as independent…

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    BBG Responds to Ted Lipien’s Washington Times commentary

    The following from Lynne Weil, Director of Communications and External Affairs at the Broadcasting Board of Governors, was sent to The Washington Times in response to Ted Lipien’s opinion piece that appeared there February 8, 2012. To the Editor: The op-ed you published on the Broadcasting Board of Governors (“VOA harms Putin opposition in Russia,” Commentary, Ted Lipien, Feb. 8) cynically attempts to exploit a real, but quickly addressed, journalistic error by the Voice of America’s Russian Service in order to deliver an inaccurate, exaggerated and distorted attack on the BBG.

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    Reforming U.S. International Broadcasting: A New Mission Statement

    By Alex Belida When the current Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) decided last year to revamp its mission statement, it conceded “a variety of opinions exist within the BBG family” about the elements the statement should contain.  That is certainly an understatement!  Virtually none of the journalists I knew at the Voice of America was happy with the old mission statement.  And the new one hasn’t exactly received rave reviews either. The old mission statement was this:  “To promote freedom and democracy and to enhance understanding through multi-media communication of accurate, objective, and balanced news, information, and other programming about America and the world audience overseas.”

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    To Inform, Engage, and Connect: a look at the BBG’s new strategy

    The Broadcasting Board of Governors released their strategy supporting their 2013 budget request today. The plan is far ranging and addresses many of the major challenges facing America’s international broadcasting today directly and several more indirectly. As good as the plan reads, the devil, as they say, is in the details. The BBG’s narrative on this plan, released earlier, created unnecessary confusion with its lack of details. The specifics, some described as tactical but still strategic in scope and time to implement, are welcome and necessary to foster an informed discussion on correcting the mission and capability of U.S. International Broadcasting. For too long, the BBG has been effectively silent,…

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    Michael Lynton Becomes the BBG’s New Interim Presiding Governor

    Just in from the Broadcasting Board of Governors: Washington, DC – Following the departure of Chairman Walter Isaacson, the Broadcasting Board of Governors today unanimously approved BBG member Michael Lynton as its new interim presiding governor. “It is a pleasure to work with this multi-talented, bipartisan board, and an honor to be elected to help lead the organization,” Lynton said. “We are each committed to the cause of making this agency the best it can be. And with our various strengths and diverse backgrounds, we all bring something to the table.”

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    Calling on the BBG to Affirm The Primacy of Good Journalism

    By Alex Belida The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) will hold a special telephonic meeting tomorrow (Saturday, Feb. 11) to decide on an interim successor to Walter Isaacson to act as “Presiding Governor” of the Agency.  Isaacson, author of the best-selling biography of the late Apple founder Steve Jobs, resigned as Chairman of the BBG on  Jan. 27th, stating he was “taking on another big writing project, so I won’t be able to give the BBG the time it needs and deserves.”

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    Where do we go from here? The troubled future of the BBG

    The sudden resignation of Walter Isaacson as Chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors will further paralyze an already dysfunctional organization in desperate need of restructuring to move beyond yesterday and meet the requirements of today and tomorrow.  This comes at a critical time when the BBG is attempting to complete and gain support for a new strategic plan.

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    The Art of the Bio: Jobs is there, but another job isn’t

    We all forget to put things on our resume.  Before, and indeed after, Walter Isaacson published his bestselling book Steve Jobs, Walter had worked another gig.  He was Chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the U.S. Government agency that runs America’s non-military broadcasting, at least until he suddenly resigned before the end of his term, to the surprise of many, write another book. But interestingly, an email from Walter’s prep school fails to mention his time at the BBG.  Walter’s time at Time and CNN and his books are of course there, but no BBG.