Radio Non Grata


When the group Reporters Without Borders was banned from the United Nations' ongoing "World Summit on the Information Society" in Geneva, it decided to broadcast its message to the delegates via a pirate radio station instead:

Robert Menard, Secretary-General of the Paris-based group Reporters Without Borders, told a news conference the service—Radio Non Grata—would put the organisation's point of view to delegates throughout the three-day conference.

"We will also be broadcasting details of press freedom violations by many of the countries taking part in this meeting, like Tunisia and Zimbabwe," he declared.

The gathering, the World Summit on the Information Society, was called by the United Nations in an effort to speed the spread of information technology and the use of the Internet to poorer countries.

But critics from some human rights groups say it is a costly sham that will bring no benefit to ordinary people.

Reporters Without Borders, which says one-third of the world's people live in countries with no media freedom and that many journalists around the globe are in prison "for doing their job," is handing out tiny portable radios and earphones to delegates so they can receive its broadcasts.

Not surprisingly, the station was quickly forced off the air. You can still hear the broadcasts, though, on the group's website.