Radio Prague International Celebrates Its 85th Anniversary
It was on August 31, 1936 at 10 AM when the international service was to be heard for the first time, combining reproduced music and live reports in various languages. Live broadcasting was offered by Radio Prague International also on the occasion of the anniversary, each of the five language services has prepared a live debate with contemporary witnesses, listeners and the presenters of the station.
For many years, the international service reached its listeners through shortwaves, while nowadays it is transmitted via the Internet and mostly works as a web portal at www.radio.cz. It prepares also specialized podcasts such as Czech Next Wave, No Night So Dark or Hovory na dálku (Long Distance Talks) with Petr Vavrouška.
From its very start, the international service has kept close contact with its listeners. In 1937 alone, Radio Praha (as the station was then named) received 14,000 letters. About two thirds were from English-speaking listeners, while the rest came from all possible places around the world, though mainly from Czech compatriots living in North America. Even today, when e-mail correspondence prevails, the station still receives letters. Radio Prague International has its supporters among social media users, too, and to mark the anniversary, the station prepared a video guiding them through the premises of Czech Radio.
Last year, the station saw a record-high traffic on its website with 7,874,248 sessions. The web pages had 13,128,552 views. The coronavirus crisis has changed the behaviour of the visitors, increasing the traffic on the German-language site. The hitherto most popular Russian site was hard hit in July, when the Russian authorities blocked its content on the territory of the Russian Federation.