Radio Singapore International closed down
Radio Singapore International (RSI), the shortwave service run by MediaCorp Radio, was shut down on 1st of August. The station, which was set up in February 1994, broadcast to the region in four languages, including English, Chinese, Malay and Bahasa Indonesia. It has a following in countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and China.
MediaCorp said in a press release on Tuesday that the effectiveness of a shortwave radio service has ‘diminished over time with changing technology and media consumption habits’. While FM radio broadcast has remained strong, audiences are turning to a plethora of alternative channels for their news, such as Internet radio and the Internet, said its spokesman.
More people around the region are also tuning into MediaCorp’s Channel NewsAsia (International) feed for news and information on global developments with Asian perspectives and hence it is ‘not optimal to continue with a full regional radio service’.
The majority of RSI’s listeners, particularly those from its popular Chinese service, are middle-aged and older. Although it offers a mix of infotainment and music programmes on top of its news and current affairs line-up, industry sources say RSI has been unable to attract young listeners in recent years and that could be one reason for its demise.
All RSI staff, which number about 50, will be redeployed to other areas such as TV news and scriptwriting.
(The Straits Times website, Singapore,via BBC Monitoring via RNW Media Network Blog)
(The English service operated on shortwave between 1100hrs – 1400hrs UTC daily on 6080Khz and 6150Khz (49m Band) The RSI web site has now the following announcement:
“Thank you for visiting this page. Please note that Radio Singapore International’s shortwave service has ended with effect from 1 August 2008, and the domain http://www.rsi.sg no longer exists.”)