Xinhua's 80-Year Journey to Global Stage

Xinhua News Agency celebrates its 80th birthday:

On Sept. 1, 1944, a radio signal was detected and captured on the western coast of the United States. Datelined “Yan’an, Xinhua,” it travelled more than 12,000 km from a small cave in west China.

The message was soon handed to senior officials in Washington, who learned the latest happenings in the war against Japan in China and changed their views on the situation.

By sending its first long-distance English-language radio signal, the Xinhua News Agency successfully made its overseas debut and started to communicate with the outside world.

Sixty-seven years later, a draft of Xinhua’s first radio message can be found in the archives of the Federal Communications Commission in Maryland.

At the same time, in the New York Times Square, Xinhua has bought space on a prominent billboard, flanked by ads for Coca-Cola and Samsung. The billboard features a LED sign, 60 feet high by 40 feet wide, that advertises Xinhua’s news services to visitors in the square.

The 80-year-old agency has moved from the caves of Yan’an to modern buildings in China’s capital, serving up a 24-hour stream of multilingual news and information in a wide variety of forms.

November 7, 2011 8:47 PM
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Categories: Politics, Society