Lacking Broader Context on Iran – 2017 AFPC Study of BBG, now USAGM

BBG Watch Commentary on USAGM

 

 
“More broadly, however, coverage of the JCPOA on both the Voice of America and Radio Farda was found to consistently lack broader context. Little to no effort was made, either by hosts or journalists, to explain the limitations of the agreement itself, or the detrimental side effects generated by it, or the implications of the deal for U.S. policy in the broader region. Similarly, in the media reports reviewed, only minimal effort was made to explain the reasoning and rationale behind the Trump administration’s different, and far more negative, view of the agreement. Simply put, Iranians were told in detail that the Obama White House supported the agreement, and why. They have not been afforded the same explanations of current administration policy.”

 
AFCP
 
AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY COUNCIL U.S. PERSIAN MEDIA STUDY
 
Final Synthesis Report
 
October 6, 2017
 

 
Incredibly, the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) — now the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM) but still under the same senior management as before of BBG CEO, now USAGM CEO John F. Lansing, Voice of America (VOA) Director Amanda Bennett and Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) President Thomas Kent [in charge of Radio Farda; Kent announced that he plans to leave RFE/RL in September] — said in a in a public statement that the the American Foreign Policy Council 2017 Study of BBG’s Persian-Language Broadcasting “did not find any systematic bias in VOA and RFE/RL content.”

The BBG statement that the study “did not find any systematic bias in VOA and RFE/RL content” is simply untrue with regard to Voice of America [VOA Persian Service] and Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty [RFE/RL Radio Farda] Iran coverage.

In fact, the AFCP study concluded:

 

 

“This dynamic, on the whole, perpetuated to audiences the appearance of pro-regime propaganda, rather than objective reporting, on the part of both the VOA and Farda.”


 
AFCP
 
AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY COUNCIL U.S. PERSIAN MEDIA STUDY
 
Final Synthesis Report
 
October 6, 2017
 

 

 

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END OF BBG Watch Commentary on USAGM

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BBG RESEARCH AND REPORTS
 

AFPC Persian-Language Broadcasting Study

 
In April 2017, VOA and RFE/RL requested that the BBG commission a study as part of a larger effort to improve the networks’ Persian language content. The independent study, carried out under the auspices of the American Foreign Policy Council, was completed in October 2017. While the study did not find any systematic bias in VOA and RFE/RL content, it did identify editorial issues that need to be corrected. BBG, VOA and RFE/RL will utilize the results and recommendations of this report to improve the Persian-language services.
 
DOWNLOADS
 
AFPC Persian-language Broadcasting Study: synthesis report (PDF, 508 KB)
 
AFPC Persian-language Broadcasting Study: procedural overview (PDF, 510 KB)

 
 
 

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