Tag Archives: International broadcasting

Behind the Scenes: April Deibert

April tours Voice of America headquarters in the Wilbur J. Cohen Building,  Washington, D.C.


“When I first started working for the Office of Digital & Design Innovation, I was given a tour of VOA headquarters by one of my supervisors.  It was great to get a historical perspective of the agency and to see the Cold War-era building it is housed in (that still has rooms that were used as potential nuclear fallout shelters and beautiful vintage brass escalators), and to meet and interview interesting on-air staff, editors and producers.

Getting an overall feeling for how each department operated separately and then together helped shape my perspective on what ODDI’s role is to facilitate the use of innovative technologies to reach different global populations. I’ve learned that the strategy behind what appears to be a simple production to the public can go far deeper and be far more intellectual than what an information consumer may realize.  The BBG is unique because it uses research to localize social media for its many global audiences.”

April Deibert is a contractor working on multimedia blogging and production for the Office of Digital and Design Innovation.  You can find some of her work on their website.

VOA’s First Broadcasts: “The news may be good or bad, we shall tell you the truth”

Today BBG broadcasts reach an audience of 175 million in 59 languages in 100 countries, producing more than 4,100 hours of original programming each week.

Our broadcasts haven’t always been that widespread. The first transmission by a current BBG broadcaster was on February 1, 1942 when four Voice of America announcers introduced themselves and the news agency to listeners in Germany:

Following those words, the Voice of America has continued broadcasting, and has since been joined by other U.S. international media.

  • Radio Free Europe was founded in 1950 and initially broadcast to Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland and Romania. Three years later, Radio Liberty began broadcasting to the Soviet Union in Russian and 15 other national languages. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty began their joint broadcasts in 1975.    These new broadcasts included transmissions to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in 1975.
  • Radio Free Asia was incorporated on March 11, 1996. It broadcasts to The People’s Republic of China, Burma, Cambodia, Laos, North Korea, Tibet and Vietnam and operates ten unique, interactive websites, nine in Asian languages.