ROSTA: Content Aspects of Radio Heralds (1918)

Download paper
Olga D. Minaeva

PhD in History, Head at the Chair of History and Statutory Regulation of Domestic Mass Media, Faculty of Journalism, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia; ORCID 0009-0000-2465-6002

Olga V. Tikhonova

PhD in Philology, Associate Professor at the Chair of Television and Radio Broadcasting, Faculty of Journalism, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia; ORCID 0000-0002-3348-4537


Section: History of Journalism

The article discusses an important period of the functioning of the Russian Telegraph Agency in the system of media and propaganda in the first years of Soviet power. In the conditions of the Civil War, the lack of professional journalists among the Bolsheviks, and the lack of experience in information work, it shaped the news and thematic agenda of printed newspapers and magazines. Telegraph radio broadcasters were the main supplier of content for the local press; their texts are important as historical evidence, allowing one to trace the dynamics of events in the country and the world. The purpose of this scientific work was to study the content of the issues to gain insight into the radio newsletter, which became the predecessor of the radio newspaper as the first form of radio journalism. The empirical base of the study consisted of 24 issues of the Moscow radiotelegraph Radio Herald ROSTA (1918). Materials from the mixing sheet from the collections of the State Archives of the Russian Federation have been introduced into scientific circulation. The study identified both quantitative characteristics (quantity of materials, volume in lines, etc.) and qualitative characteristics (genres, themes, key characters, 'geography' of materials, linguistic means of expression). The results of the study confirmed the qualities of the radio broadcaster as a propagandist, agitator and organizer. The dominant genres are short news article, review, analysis article, report, journalistic story, correspondence, commentary, and operation summary. The topics are dominated by the following issues: industry/production, government work, social sphere, army/military conflicts, culture/art, medicine/health, transport/roads, housing, emergencies, education, public events. Regions prevail in the 'geography' of materials. The study proved that Radio Bulletin ROSTA reflected the state’s steps towards the formation of a system of information and propaganda in the first years of Soviet power and was aimed at a mass audience.

Keywords: Russian Telegraph Agency, information, propaganda, radio herald, topics, genres, audience
DOI: 10.30547/vestnik.journ.1.2024.93110


Gurevich M. S. Radio i televidenie v SSR. 1917–1963 (Daty i fakty) (1965) [Radio and television in the SSR. 1917–1963 (Dates and facts)]. Moscow: Goskomitet Soveta ministrov SSSR po televideniyu i radioveshchaniy. Nauchno-metodicheskiy otdel. Publ. (In Russian)

Goryaeva T. M. (ed.) (2007) «Velikaya kniga dnya…» Radio v SSSR: Dokumenty i materialy [«The Great Book of the Day...» Radio in the USSR: Documents and Materials]. Moscow: ROSSPEN. (In Russian)

Goryaeva T. M. (ed.) (1991) Istoriya sovetskoy radiozhurnalistiki: Dokumenty. Teksty. Vospominaniya. 1917–1945 [History of Soviet radio journalism: Documents. Texts. Memories. 1917–1945]. Moscow: Moscow State Univ. Publ. (In Russian)

Gurevich P. S., Ruzhnikov V. N. (1976) Sovetskoe radioveshchanie: stranitsy istorii [Soviet radio broadcasting: pages of history]. Moscow: Iskusstvo Publ. (In Russian)

Kuznetsov I. V. (2002) Istoriya otechestvennoy zhurnalistiki (1917–2000) [The history of Russian journalism (1917–2000)]. Moscow: Flinta: Nauka Publ. (In Russian)

Lenin V. I. N. P. Gorbunovu. 21. X. 1918 g. [N.P. Gorbunov. 21. X. 1918]. Polnoe sobraniye sochineniy. Moscow: Izdatel’stvo politicheskoy litiratry, 1975. Vol. 50. Pp. 197. (In Russian)

Minaeva O. D. (2018) Istoriya otechestvennoy zhurnalistiki. 1917–1945 [History of national journalism. 1917–1945]. Moscow: Aspekt Press Publ. (In Russian)

Ruzhnikov V. N. (1987) Tak nachinalos': Istoriko-teoreticheskiy ocherk sovetskogo radioveshchaniya. 1917–1928 [So it began: A historical and theoretical essay on Soviet radio broadcasting. 1917–1928]. Moscow: Iskusstvo Publ. (In Russian)

Tikhonova O. V. (2016) Radiosvyaz' v Rossii 1917 goda: osobennosti funktsionirovaniya [Radio communication in Russia in 1917: features of functioning]. Istoriya otechestvennykh SMI. Nauchnyy zhurnal 2: 115-124. (In Russian)

To cite this article: Minaeva O. D., Tikhonova O. V. (2024) ROSTA: soderzhatel'nye aspekty radiovestnikov (1918) [ROSTA: Content Aspects of Radio Heralds (1918)]. Vestn. Mosk. un-ta. Ser. 10: Zhurnalistika 1: 93–110. DOI: 10.30547/vestnik.journ.1.2024.93110