|Official Country Name:||Socialist Republic of Viet Nam|
|Region (Map name):||Southeast Asia|
The Vietnamese government strictly regulates media in that country. The ruling Communist party expects all media to disseminate party doctrines in an effort to educate the population in addition to swaying international perceptions of Vietnam. The Ministry of Culture directs the Vietnamese Communist Party (VCP) Central Committee's Propaganda and Training Department to shape national and local media.
The Vietnam War disrupted media which was restored and expanded after North and South Vietnam were unified in 1976. More than 350 newspapers, magazines, and journals are printed in Vietnam. The Vietnam News Agency (VNA) is the official government wire service that releases and receives news to and from Vietnamese and international media. The daily Vietnam News Agency is an English language press release that contains items the government considers most significant for distribution. The VCP's primary national newspaper is Nhân Dân ( People's Daily ), published at Hanoi. This newspaper was established in 1946 by Ho Chi Minh, and is the official print media of the VCP Central Committee. Each four-page newspaper features transcripts of party speeches and articles written by party leaders that discuss the government and economic and cultural developments. All government and party workers are required to read Nhân Dân , which has a circulation of almost half a million.
Tap Chi Cong San ( Communist Review ) is a monthly government journal discussing political theory which is designed for both domestic and international readership. Originally published from 1955 to 1977 as Hoc Tap ( Studies ), Tap Chi Cong San contains party news and circulates to several hundred thousand readers. Other nationally distributed newspapers include Nguoi Viet Daily News , Tap Chi Cong Doan ( Trade Union Review ) and Phu Nu Vietnam ( Vietnamese Women ). The Quan Doi Nhân Dân ( People's Army ) is a four-page periodical circulated daily except Sunday to approximately one million military forces to notify them of training procedures. Trí Tuê Viêt Nam is published in Ho Chi Minh City, and the Federation of Trade Unions' weekly Lao Dong and Thoi Báo Kihn Tê Viêt Nam are issued at Hanoi. The magazine Quê Huong is published weekly. National periodicals also focus on specific topics such as science, art, business, sports, and technology.
In addition to national papers published in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, many local newspapers circulate. Each of Vietnam's administrative areas has newspapers which report regional news and local party committee information instead of national accounts. Smaller newspapers are frequently printed in the language of minority tribes.
Some newspapers are published in foreign languages for ethnic populations, such as Chinese residents, as well as for international distribution. The Saigon Times Daily ( http://www.saigon-news.com/ ) is an English newspaper published in Ho Chi Minh City. Informado El Vjetnamio ( Information on Vietnam ) is printed in Esperanto.
The Committee for Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries produces periodicals to showcase Vietnam globally. Most of these periodicals were established when Vietnam was French Indochina. The cultural monthly Vietnam Courier , created in 1962, and Vietnamese Studies , started in 1965, are published in English and French. Vietnam Pictorial is a monthly publication founded in 1959 that features illustrations depicting Vietnamese life with text in several languages.
Ëài Tieng nói Viêt Nam (The Voice of Vietnam) has broadcast internationally from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City in twelve languages as well as minority dialects since 1986. Hanoi has at least five radio broadcast sites, and AM and FM radio stations are located in other parts of Vietnam, broadcasting to 8 million radios. The Central Television network was established in 1970 and has expanded the number of television stations and channels available in Vietnam. Transmissions are broadcast to 2.5 million televisions.
Since the mid-1980s, Vietnamese journalists have sought and achieved more freedom of expression. They especially want to distribute more factual reports based on investigative methods and to include voices representing the diversity of the Vietnamese people. These journalists seek to print accurate public opinion of Vietnamese policies. The Vietnam Journalists' Association encourages media professionalism. Vietnamese authorities often order the detention of reporters who disobey state rules and print anticommunist, pro-reform, and human rights material, which the government views as reactionary. People are sometimes arrested and jailed without receiving trials. Their writing equipment and files are usually confiscated. Journalist Doan Viet Hoat was imprisoned in labor and re-education camps from 1976 to 1989 and 1990 to 1998 because his underground newsletter Dien Dan Tu Do ( Freedom Forum ) criticized the Vietnamese government and promoted democracy. Reporters Le Chi Quang and Tran Khue were jailed in March 2002 for publishing internet articles critical of Vietnam's government.
Cima, Ronald J., ed. Vietnam: A Country Study . Washington, D.C.: Federal Research Division Library of Congress, 1989.
Kudlak, Michael. "50 Years, 50 Press Freedom Heroes." IPI Report 6 (2000): posted at http://www.freemedia.at/IPIReport2.00/14doan.htm .
Marr, David, ed. Mass Media in Vietnam . Canberra: Department of Political and Social Change, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National University, 1998.
Elizabeth D. Schafer