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RIA Novosti Preps for Change

Published: March 12, 2014 (Issue # 1801)



  • RIA Novosti, pictured above, and the state radio service Voice of Russia are to both be merged into Rossia Segodnya.
    Photo: Vladimir Filonov / SPT

Three months after asurprise Kremlin announcement that Russian state news agency RIA Novosti was tobe liquidated, changes are under way atthe company.

As employees were asked to schoose whether tostay onat RIA Novostis replacement agency or sign redundancy contracts, theagencys editor-in-chief Iraklii Gachechiladze said Thursday that staffing procedures forthe new company were almost complete andthat its final structure could be unveiled next week.

Related: RIA Novosti Employees Await Word on Fate of News Agency

Employees up toand including theagencys editor-in-chief were stunned onDec. 9 bya presidential decree liquidating RIA Novosti, Russias largest state-run news agency.

Under thedecree, RIA andthe state radio service Voice ofRussia are tobe disbanded andtheir remaining structures merged intoa replacement media organization named Rossia Segodnya, which is Russian forRussia Today.

News andcommentary website Slon.ru ran astory Wednesday quoting aletter sent toemployees ofRIA Novostis regional offices inwhich thedepartments head described thesituation as a rather bleak picture.

The letter said thenumber ofregional correspondents would be slashed, while those remaining will work fromhome, thereport said.

Gachechiladze criticized thereport, saying Slon.ru had failed toproperly secure RIA Novostis position ondevelopments.

Related: http://www.sptimes.ru/story/38685

Even respected publications such as Slon.ru are not trying toreach RIAs press service before publishing materials, said Gachechiladze. All thereforms are taking place with as much transparency as possible, therefore there is no need torely ondifferent interpretations ofthe events taking place.

Even rank-and-file employees within thecompany have been left largely inthe dark about plans forRossia Segodnya andabout thespecifics ofits future editorial policy since theRIA Novosti liquidation news was announced, however.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the clubs website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit Neophobia at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBAs Marketing and Communications Committees round table discussion on Government Relations Practices in Russia this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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