UT Professor Trains African Newscasters (170)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Rules of the game gradually are changing for African broadcast news directors, University of Tennessee professor Sam Swan said Monday.

 To help with the transition, the Voice of America recently held a two-day workshop in Washington, D.C., to acquaint news directors from 10 African nations with management techniques and skills they will need to convert from government-controlled to privately owned stations.

 Swan, who lectures on news director and management techniques in UT-Knoxville’s College of Communications, was the person VOA chose to teach the workshops.

 “We are seeing more (African radio stations) becoming privatized,” Swan said. “There is some free press there. There may be a little censorship, but not like (other) government-owned systems.”

 Swan said many African stations are under democratic governments. He said Namibia, which gained independence from South Africa and is now independent, has a free press and a private commercial broadcasting system.

 Both private and government-sponsored radio stations face many problems, such as funding, security, personnel and censorship, Swan said.

 VOA is the worldwide radio network of the U.S. government.

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 Contact: Sam Swan (423-974-5151)