VOA Afghan Reaches Digital Milestone with Taliban Anniversary Coverage
VOA Afghan’s coverage of the 6th month anniversary of the Taliban's takeover of Afghanistan paid off on social media. Live reports, original stories, and high-profile interviews with Rep. Michael Waltz (R-FL) and Hazara Leader Haji Mohammad Mohaqiq, drew more than 3-million viewers to the Dari and Pashto Facebook, Instagram and Twitter platforms. VOA Afghan’s television and radio teams provided 12 hours of in-depth coverage. VOA Afghan collaborated with VOA's News Center on several compelling stories, including desperate actions caused by the current hunger crisis, and the Taliban’s chilling impact on media freedom. South and Central Asia Division Director Ayesha Tanzeem, who is wrapping up her work as VOA correspondent in the region, has returned to Afghanistan this week to report on what’s changed in the country since the Taliban takeover (the news is not good for Afghan citizens still there…).
Audiences Flock to Expanded VOA Coverage of the Escalating Russia-Ukraine Crisis
In response to increased demand from target audiences and affiliates, VOA’s expanded coverage of the Ukraine crisis generated wide interest and engagement, garnering more than 1.5 million views and more than 131,000 interactions on digital platforms. Augmenting web coverage hours, the number of live interactives with affiliates, and live broadcasts with simultaneous translation in Russian and Ukrainian, VOA’s Ukrainian, Russian and Georgian services provided audiences with value-added coverage featuring the views of U.S. and international experts from Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and the United Kingdom, as well as Americans and western Europeans living in Ukraine and locals living in regions close to the Russian border.
VOA Persian's Special Programming on the Anniversary of the Iranian Revolution Resonates with Audience
In the lead-up to the 43rd anniversary of the Iranian Revolution, VOA Persian aired 6 special prime time shows covering a range of topics from women’s rights to growth of ideology and cultural destruction, inviting 18 experts to provide analysis on all aspects of life for Iranians after 1979. The week culminated with a special that used statistics to show the impact of the revolution, with 9 VOA correspondents providing in-depth reports on foreign policy, the nuclear program, military capability, women's rights, and human rights violations. Audience engagement surpassed 1.65 million, increasing on all digital platforms, especially Instagram.
Wide Following for VOA Mandarin’s Coverage of Chinese-American Olympian's Citizenship Question
VOA Mandarin’s comprehensive reporting on the Beijing Winter Olympics garnered significant audience reach across all digital platforms. Coverage of the much-talked-about question of freestyle skier Eileen Gu's nationality was a huge hit, with video of her giving carefully-worded answers to reporters generating 340,000 views and 114,000 engagement actions on Twitter. San Francisco-born Gu represents China at the Games and has so far earned one gold and one silver medal. The 18-year-old refused to say if she still holds an American passport, raising questions as China does not permit dual citizenship.
VOA Creole Documentary Highlights Haiti’s Effort to Recover After Devastating Earthquake
On August 14, 2021, Haiti experienced its worst earthquake in more than a decade. VOA was on the scene immediately after the quake and six months later shares stories of resilience with its English and Creole-speaking audiences in a new documentary, "Invincible: Haiti Pushes Forward." The 30-minute documentary takes the viewer on location where journalists from the service spoke to the people affected, medical and aid workers, government officials and those who launched their own relief efforts, showcasing the challenges and opportunities ahead. The film was released in Haiti via the service’s digital platforms and its media partners. VOA Creole affiliate Storm TV in Port Au Prince told the service that documentaries are important for Haiti, as there are no Haitian media organizations producing this type of programming, so VOA Creole is leading the way. So far the documentary has garnered 13.5K views on Facebook.
New Audio Tool Boosts VOA Africa Digital Numbers
A VOA Somali report about a Somali girl shot dead in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur, reportedly carried out by an Iraqi man, has garnered nearly 180,000 Facebook views in the first 24 hours thanks to the new Headliner audiogram application. The Africa Division recently rolled out this new application, with the goal of leveraging radio content on social media. Material for the Somali report first was used on radio, then was repurposed as an audiogram using Headliner for social media.
Notable British Think Tank Screens VOA Tigray Documentary
Chatham House, one of Britain's oldest and most prestigious foreign policy think tanks, hosted a Feb.15 showing of the VOA documentary "Terror in Tigray: The Ethiopian Refugee Crisis" and invited reporter/producer Heather Murdock to London to deliver opening remarks and take questions about the production. In an email, Chatham House said they have “watched the documentary which was brilliant. … We are all in agreement that we would love to showcase this to our members and our network of Africa specialists.”