Budget cuts have led state-funded Radio Canada International and Radio Netherlands to end their short-wave broadcasts and move to a purely online presence. The Internet provides more options and better quality broadcasts to listeners, The Economist reported Thursday.
Graham Mytton, who formerly ran the BBC's audience research, said though that short-wave radio is the only broadcasting medium available everywhere and is cheap to use. Battery-run radios would be the only working communications devices in a disaster if local transmitters went off air and brought down the Internet.
Voice of America said its short-wave audience has grown in the past decade, particularly in Myanmar, while World Christian Broadcasting of Tennessee has recently built a new $3 million site in Madagascar to broadcast to South America, Africa and the Middle East, The Economist said.