Media Situation In Central Asia


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  • Media Situation In Central Asia

    1. 1. <ul><li>Media Situation in Central Asia </li></ul><ul><li>by Yelena Jetpyspayeva, M.A. </li></ul><ul><li> Managing Editor, </li></ul><ul><li>Journalist, blogger </li></ul><ul><li>Giessen University, May, 2009 </li></ul>
    2. 2. Agenda <ul><li>Media Situation in Central Asia: Overview </li></ul><ul><li>New Media Contest </li></ul><ul><li> – Blogging Central Asia project </li></ul><ul><li>Additional: GVO </li></ul><ul><li>List of useful resources </li></ul>
    3. 3. Media Situation in Central Asia: Overview <ul><li>Declared democracies but authoritarian in practice regimes </li></ul><ul><li>Weak traditional media (official news + entertainment) </li></ul><ul><li>Country coverage mostly by state-owned media </li></ul><ul><li>Censorship and restrictive media laws </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Closed countries’ in terms of information (‘happy life’ inside the country, ‘no freedom of speech’ from outside perspective) </li></ul>
    4. 4. Freedom House survey
    5. 5. Comment: Kazakhstan <ul><li>“ Meanwhile, the most popular Russian-language blog platform Livejournal is still blocked in Kazakhstan since October last year. Recently, the opposition websites started suffereing from massive  DDoS attacks  campaign. One of such victims is the website of independent weekly “Respublika”, which often criticizes the prime-minister. </li></ul><ul><li>T he government does not care much about OSCE - and the West does not care much about Kazakh democracy in the times of global crisis. Such coincidence allows Astana to do whatever it wants due to its “country specific”, so the Kazakhstan’s chairmanship will be later perceived as a bad dream by the member states - while Kazakhstan will remain the same Kazakhstan, as its people are used to know it. ” </li></ul><ul><li>Adil A. Nurmakov, Ph.D. </li></ul><ul><li>Country Editor for Kazakhstan </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Regional Editor for Central Asia </li></ul><ul><li>www.GlobalVoicesOnline.Org </li></ul>
    6. 6. Comment: Kyrgyzstan <ul><li>“ By 2008 - 2009 3 opposition newspapers were closed in Kyrgyzstan. 2 of them were closed after the court hearing once articles about possible participation of president’s nephew in car accident with dead case were published . </li></ul><ul><li>Because of political pressure from the government side Azattyk radio (radio Liberty Free Europe office) stopped broadcasting in Kyrgyzstan . Internet regulation incentive comparable to Kazakhstan were each Internet site could be defined as mass media and banned was initiated by deputy of the Parliament but fortunately recently stopped . Nevertheless there are attempts to pass rights to regulate .kg domain zone to state structure . </li></ul><ul><li>During 5 month of 2009 6 journalists were beaten in Kyrgyzstan, 3 left the country because of political reasons” . </li></ul><ul><li>Elena Skochilo </li></ul><ul><li>Country Editor for </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Award-winning photojournalist and </li></ul><ul><li>blogger from Bishkek. Former editor for the Institute for </li></ul><ul><li>War and Peace Reporting’s Central Asia bureau, </li></ul><ul><li>regular contributor to AP,, and </li></ul><ul><li>EurasiaNet. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
    7. 7. New Media Contest <ul><li>Internet penetration growth (Kazakhstan from 6% (2005) to 1 4 % (2008)) </li></ul><ul><li>Active youth with firm civil position + opinion leaders </li></ul><ul><li>Reporting from the country = Civil journalism </li></ul><ul><li>Difficulties : </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of New Media knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>High costs for Internet </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction of restrictive Internet regulations </li></ul>
    8. 10. <ul><li>“ neweurasia   is a network of weblogs coordinated and written by bright young individuals from Central Asia and the Caucasus together with their peers around the globe. </li></ul><ul><li>neweurasia has many faces, but one uniting aim: bringing together young, committed people from around the world in the hope of offering these young thinkers space to publish their ideas on Central Asia and the Caucasus ” . </li></ul><ul><li>Ben Paarman, 27 y.o., the founder. </li></ul><ul><li>a former student of  Development Studies  at  Cambridge University   </li></ul><ul><li>and Development Economics at  SOAS . </li></ul><ul><li>C urrently resides in The Hague / Netherlands, where works </li></ul><ul><li>as a political analyst focusing on emerging markets. </li></ul><ul><li>Contact Ben at ben (at) neweurasia (dot) net </li></ul><ul><li>http :// / </li></ul>
    9. 11. Who are we? <ul><li>Founded in 2005 by US and EU students to report from and on Central Asia; </li></ul><ul><li>Original principle: one country, one blog; main site as the «hub»; </li></ul><ul><li>T eamed up with Transitions Online (TOL, Media NGO from Prague) in 2006, employed «bridge bloggers» - paid bloggers who head the country sections; </li></ul><ul><li>Funded by Hivos and OSI. </li></ul>
    10. 13. Achievements <ul><li>Steady news flow, increasing visitor numbers, launch of Russian and Kazakh/Kyrgyz/Uzbek/Tajik language versions; </li></ul><ul><li>B locked in Uzbekistan since summer 2006; </li></ul><ul><li>Altogether 50 training sessions, seminars and conferences (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan) reaching 600+ people; </li></ul><ul><li>Best Blog contest, specific country highlights, mainstream media attention. </li></ul>
    11. 14. <ul><li>Training sessions </li></ul><ul><li>Traffic </li></ul><ul><li>Unique pageviews </li></ul>
    12. 15. <ul><li>International audience </li></ul><ul><li>Kazakhstan blogs dominant </li></ul>
    13. 16. <ul><li>Current technological limits </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-install Wordpress hard to maintain; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Few (useful) «Web 2.0» features; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No clear navigation between languages; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How can we highlight the various forms of content we have? </li></ul></ul>
    14. 17. Difficulties <ul><li>Are we a blog? A news-site? A webzine? </li></ul><ul><li>Who do we publish for? Central Asia or Europe/US? </li></ul><ul><li>What’s our editorial mission? </li></ul><ul><li>How can we make sure there is real dialogue between the readerships? </li></ul><ul><li>How can we retain our position as the «region’s premier blogging network»?  </li></ul><ul><li>Do we want to «spin off» successful local language blogs into separate and independent projects? </li></ul><ul><li>Finally, where will we be in one year’s time? </li></ul>
    15. 18. <ul><li>Modifying </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New one-installation Wordpress blog hub uniting all different country sections; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More «newsy» look, clear hierarchy of stories; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New theme-based navigation; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Better and cleaner photo, video and podcast integration; </li></ul></ul>
    16. 19. Modifications: tech/managerial <ul><li>Change towards more «quality blogging» - original stories + exclusive photo/video content; </li></ul><ul><li>Clear hierarcy : </li></ul><ul><li>Managing editors (Russian, English) </li></ul><ul><li>Country editors (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan) </li></ul><ul><li>BridgeBloggers </li></ul><ul><li>Bloggers; </li></ul><ul><li>Better integration with diff.types of media: developing stories out of blog posts, offering monetary and development rewards to bloggers; </li></ul><ul><li>More translations -> more flow of information between the different audiences; </li></ul><ul><li>Day-by-day development and exchange : newsletter, sharing results, real team work!! (twitter, flickr, etc.) </li></ul>
    17. 20. <ul><li>Showcasing the potential of «quality» citizen media by compiling and editing a book of 60-odd best posts </li></ul><ul><li>Further monitoring of the local blogospheres and cooperation with Global Voices </li></ul>
    18. 25. Blog with us! <ul><li>Interested in blogging for </li></ul><ul><li>Get in contact with Managing Board: </li></ul><ul><li>Christopher Schwartz   [email_address] for English </li></ul><ul><li>Yelena Jetpyspayeva [email_address] for Russian </li></ul>
    19. 26. Additional <ul><li>Global Voices Online </li></ul><ul><li>www. </li></ul>
    20. 49. List of resources <ul><li>If you are interested in LIVE problematic CORAGEOUS ENOUGH content + opinions from Central Asia, you click on </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>mobile blogging in Kazakhstan </li></ul><ul><li>supported by Soros Foundation Kazakhstan </li></ul>
    21. 50. <ul><li>Рахмет! </li></ul><ul><li>Спасибо! </li></ul><ul><li>Vielen Dank! </li></ul><ul><li>Thankx! </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>