Another Loss for North American Shortwave

I was saddened to learn that Radio Netherlands is ending shortwave transmissions to North America, effective October 26, 2008. Radio Netherlands was one of the first shortwave stations I ever heard and I have spent many enjoyable hours over the years listening to their programs.

I’m sure this move makes financial sense for Radio Netherlands, just as I’m sure dropping shortwave broadcasts to North America made financial sense for the BBC. There are no broadcasters with budgets large enough to transmit to everywhere in the world and it only makes sense to allocate limited resources to areas deemed most important. But it’s still sad to watch the steady decline of shortwave services to North America.

BBC World News

"BBC World News" is a fixture on PBS stations in the United States, and it has been for a number of years. WLIW-TV, the US distributor for the program, has chosen not to renew their contract with the BBC. The new distributor is KCET-TV from Los Angeles. Now WLIW-TV is preparing their own international new program with a working title of "Your World Tonight". It remains to be seen how many PBS stations will keep "BBC World News" and how many will pick up the new "Your World Tonight".

BBC Rebranding

According to this article in the Guardian, the BBC is engaged in a rebranding campaign for its news services. The changes involve new sets, a new logo (a red globe symbol), and new station identifications (often called "idents"). The domestic news channel, BBC News 24, is being renamed BBC News and the international news channel, BBC World, is being renamed BBC World International. The stated goal for these changes is to provide a more uniform look and structure for all of their news services. The revamp will cost £550,000.

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