TVM Sector Perspective
How Sector Activities Impact People, Place, Planet and Profit
Chapter 14 - Communications ... Media
Radio and Television
Radio and television have been under government control in Haiti. However private channels can be picked up from satellites and from broadcasts originating from other countries.
These are powerful ways of spreading news, entertaining people, spreading propaganda and influencing people.
While the English language is used to some extent, the primary language in the country is Arabic. While programs in English reach the international community in Haiti, it is the Arabic programming that reaches the population at large.
There are a variety of newspapers in Haiti. A lot of material printed in the media has originated from some official source. Newspapers are an important communications medium and should be used not only for entertainment but also for serious news and analysis.
New media ... Internet
The Internet must be thought of as a major component of the media sector. The Internet has a combination of characteristics that have never been seen before ... it can be extremely fast ... combine digital video, audio, text and interaction in a bewildering range of combinations. It can be private or it can be very public, depending on how the user chooses to interact with the Internet and the Internet community.
The telephone service in Haiti has become much more wireless in the past few years. The technology is insufficient and service leaves much to be desired. Urban areas are being targeted, but remote areas are not being served. Getting a good telecom infrastructure is a good basis for other progress.
In Haiti the Internet is available through a variety of services, none are cheap. The Internet ought to be working on top of a good local infrastructure and be accessible easily and at low cost.
The most effective strategy is going to be to make sure that the development of communications is handled by the private sector, with the public sector authorities having a regulatory role that ensures a quality service and pricing and service agreements that are reasonable.