BBG Watch Commentary

bad management message illustration designOfficials of the International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB) in Washington are ending long-term partnerships with rebroadcasters of programs sponsored by the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) with a two sentence, impersonal emails without any thank-you for years of loyal contracting service to the U.S. government.

These foreign broadcasters have been rebroadcasting Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Asia (RFA), and Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) programs and often took risks vis-a-vis their governments and regulatory agencies to provide this service for American taxpayers.

These terse cancelation emails were sent out by IBB because of IBB-initiated major cuts to BBG shortwave and medium wave transmissions to Asia, Middle East, and Belarus, many of which are to take effect on June 30. IBB emails do not include any thank-yous for years of excellent rebroadcasting services.

In a further display of bureaucratic arrogance and contempt for foreign audiences, IBB executives reportedly did not tell heads of VOA, RFA, and RFE/RL that they plan to cut these shortwave transmissions in just three days. It shows how contemptuous IBB officials are of the BBG media entities and their audiences, both of which IBB is supposed to serve.

One of the IBB rebroadcasters sent us a copy of an email he received from the International Broadcasting Bureau in Washington.

Today I received this email from IBB:

Dear sir/madam,

IBB will end all use of your transmitter effective 30 days from the date of this email. Please contact us if you have any questions.


IBB officials, who lack any connection with foreign audiences or with U.S. public diplomacy and foreign policy, treat foreign contractors the same way they approach foreign audiences, BBG media outlets, and their journalists — with arrogance and superiority as well as indifference and often contempt.

ALSO READ: PCJ Radio making fun of Voice of America and BBG executives on radio cuts to Asia and Middle East, BBG Watch, June 29, 2014.

ALSO READ: Bureaucrats gave listeners little time to learn about shortwave cuts by VOA, RFA, and RFE/RL, BBG Watch, June 28, 2014.

ALSO READ: Dropping radio and going all digital: VOA Asia Twitter not updated since May 3, BBG Watch, June 29, 2014.