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Quotable: Newscasters, neocolonialists, persuasion, public diplomacy

Sunday, July 3rd 2016

“Arabs in the MENA region should be aware of the foreign media blitz targeting their very existence and identity. Arab nations have become like a platter of food that contemporary powers sit around to eat from.”  Writing in the June 13, 2016, issue of Morocco World News, a critic blasted “’Public Diplomacy,’ or The Arab World, Served up on a Plate.”  The columnist argued; you decide.  Public Diplomacy practitioners can read the article and practice their responses.  Here are some quotes:

 

  • Nowadays, propagandists fight an unorthodox war: no bloodshed, no artillery and surely no soldiers. The media is the weapon, journalists are the soldiers, the target is the viewer’s mind and the bullets are news bulletins and entertainment programs.

 

  • The mass media have become the platforms through which twenty-first century wars are fought. Countries no longer colonize by means of the gun. Now they colonize by means of the satellite disk.
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Donald M. Bishop is the Bren Chair of Strategic Communications at Marine Corps University in Quantico, Virginia. 

Mr. Bishop served as a Foreign Service Officer – first in the U.S. Information Agency and then in the Department of State – for 31 years.  Specializing in Public Diplomacy, political-military affairs, and East Asia, he attained the rank of Minister-Counselor in the career service.  He was President of the Public Diplomacy Council from 2013 to 2015 and is now a member of the Board of Directors.

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Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: Kim Andrew Elliott on market-based international broadcasting

Saturday, March 5th 2016

“Measurement of media impact” was the topic of a February 1, 2016, essay by Kim Andrew Elliott, “The Negative Impact of ‘Impact.’” Posted on the USC Public Diplomacy blog on February 1, 2016, the essay was also a statement of international broadcasting philosophy.  According to Elliott, “only a few uncommonly wise national governments allow their international broadcasting outlets the independence necessary to achieve the credibility required to attract an audience.”  Here are key quotes:

 

  • In public diplomacy, the need to assess impact is readily apparent. Public diplomacy is a persuasive activity. Stakeholders want to know if the effort was able to “move the needle.”

 

  • The audience for international broadcasting seeks news and information that is more objective than the news they get from their state-controlled domestic media. Their domestic media designed to rally support for the regime and its policies. The audience for international broadcasting seeks relief from that type of content. They want to be comprehensively and truthfully informed.
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Donald M. Bishop is the Bren Chair of Strategic Communications at Marine Corps University in Quantico, Virginia. 

Mr. Bishop served as a Foreign Service Officer – first in the U.S. Information Agency and then in the Department of State – for 31 years.  Specializing in Public Diplomacy, political-military affairs, and East Asia, he attained the rank of Minister-Counselor in the career service.  He was President of the Public Diplomacy Council from 2013 to 2015 and is now a member of the Board of Directors.

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Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: Legatum Institute Report on Counter Propaganda by Nicholas Cull

Sunday, December 20th 2015

There’s an abundant historical literature on Public Diplomacy, and a July 24, 2015, report published by the Legatum Institute, “Counter Propaganda: Cases from US Public Diplomacy and Beyond,” provides a crisp historical review.  The author is Professor Nicholas Cull of the University of Southern California, well known as the author of the magisterial The Cold War and the United States Information Agency 1945-1989 (Cambridge University Press, 2008).  For Public Diplomacy, propaganda, and counter-propaganda, the report includes principles, case studies, historical lessons learned, and recommendations in only 12 pages of text.

 

Professor Cull’s review of propaganda through the 1930s is full of cautionary examples, well explains the word’s negative associations, and summarizes the post-World War I debate to define what is licit and illicit.  The compact section on World War II and the longer portion on the Cold War are full of instructive examples – too many forgotten – that still echo in America’s approach to Public Diplomacy. 

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Donald M. Bishop is the Bren Chair of Strategic Communications at Marine Corps University in Quantico, Virginia. 

Mr. Bishop served as a Foreign Service Officer – first in the U.S. Information Agency and then in the Department of State – for 31 years.  Specializing in Public Diplomacy, political-military affairs, and East Asia, he attained the rank of Minister-Counselor in the career service.  He was President of the Public Diplomacy Council from 2013 to 2015 and is now a member of the Board of Directors.

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Author: Donald M. Bishop

CCTV America fights credibility issues, reaches audiences far beyond the U.S.

Wednesday, May 13th 2015

CCTV America must constantly battle the perception that its funders in Beijing are slanting its news broadcasts, but that may not be the case – or at least it may be an exaggeration.  

That was the word from Mike Waltera news anchor at CCTV America, who spoke at Monday’s PDC / USC First Monday Communications Leadership Forum in Washington DC. 

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Adam Clayton Powell III

Board member

Adam Clayton Powell III is Director, Washington Programs for the University of Southern California's Center on Communication Leadership and Policy and directs the Center's Internet of Things (IoT) Emergency Response Initiative. He is also University Fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy

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Author: Adam Powell

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