Though there are many sources of media, small and big, through out Thailand, I decided to start off with one of Thailand’s oldest newspaper, the “Bangkok Post.” Reporting on politics, crime and other general events, as well as news on Asia and world news.
A little backdrop on “Bangkok Post,” is that is was founded in 1946 and is now owned by Post Publishing Co. Lt. and its shareholders, this company also runs many media branches throughout Thailand. Some being M2F, free Thai-Language Daily Newspaper and a more youth and mainstream aimed Student Weekly magazine, among many other posts.
My first impression from its motivational statement of being “The Worlds Window on Thailand,” demonstrated to me that this new source was aiming at being transparent on what is going on in Thailand’s society. On the aesthetic of the site, its layout was pretty clean and simple. Starting off by show casing the top sections and giving a few more home based stories before rapidly moving on to world and Asia related news.
After reading and analyzing a couple of articles on the front site of the Bangkok Post, “Suspended governor gears for probes after Korea trip” and “Immigration nets seven foreigners on the run”, I did not come across much opinion based writing. Most of the articles were straight to the point with just displaying common facts and openly known discussions. The article, “Three Lese Majeste prisoners freed” did not show any sympathy towards the women being freed after being imprisoned by the government for critiquing or laughing at the Royal state. Which is the biggest imposing law in Thailand on Freedom of Press. The article was very fact based with no sign of defying the law or concern for the journalist. There was a small section that specifically stated “opinion” based post, while all the main reporting was given in a monotone approach.
With some side research I connected the dots on how this news source is highly clouded by government influence. After reviewing Thailand’s laws on freedom of press through out the last decade, a law that stood out was “prohibiting the media from disseminating information that could cause disorder or that criticized the coup regime”(Freedom House). With this information we can only tie in the great impact it has on the news that is being reported or that is not being published.
Most of the political articles seemed to be largely sourced from government officials and not many common personal. Laws did not seem to be questioned just bluntly described. Most reports are very short, which would only further support the fact that these news posts are reported on with as much precaution as possible. Making sure to not critique the Royal State or any of power.
An interesting note was that the home page of Bangkok Post was mostly filled with crime, business and political posts. The Lifestyle post’s are exhibited at the far bottom of the site. While we saw many world news and small crimes being presented, all political posts were very vague and left me with an uneasy demeanor. It is known that with all of Thailand’s Laws against Freedom of Press, many journalist continue to fight for that right to showcase their own beliefs or truths.