Saturday, 27 June 2009

[creative-radio] MENA Indonesia radio becomes voice for tolerance

Indonesia radio becomes voice for tolerance

By Jerome Rivet – 1 day ago


JAKARTA (AFP) — A young radio news agency in Indonesia is attracting fans
and international recognition for programming that eschews "infotainment"
and focuses on hard issues like human rights and corruption.

Founded 10 years ago after the fall of the Suharto dictatorship, KBR-68H
is making the most of the liberalisation of Indonesia's media to spread
values of free speech and religious tolerance across the huge archipelago.

The country's only independent national news agency now has a network of
more than 600 local radio affiliates and an audience of more than 18
million people in almost all corners of the mainly Muslim country.

Co-founder and managing director Santoso said that in the era of Facebook
and Twitter, old-fashioned radio was still the "cheapest and most
flexible" way to reach a wide audience.

"Our goal is to expand our network to Indonesia's remote areas such as
central Papua, Sumba island or Maluku. It will encourage citizen
participation and strengthen democracy," he said.

As Indonesia is broken up into thousands of islands, the best way in KBR's
view to reach listeners is to offer ready-made programming to community
radio stations in each region.

"We send eight hours of programmes per day -- news bulletins, reports and
a lot of interactive talk shows," production director Heri Hendratmoko

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