Thursday, May 24, 2007

One more notice on russian media in EST

In addition to censorship on russian Delfi it seems that last days the Aktuaalne Kaamera vene keeles got more dry and shrinked from 15-20 to 10 minutes. No news is good news?

Suggestion of Laine Jänes, the Minister of culture

One interesting opinion on the matter of integration in Estonia was published yesterday in Eesti Päevaleht, the author is the Estonian Minister of culture. As many others it's one of the edges of the solution of existing problem. I'll try to summarize this text briefly.

Original article

After the bronze night one very positive thing has happend in Estonia - we have really noticed, that in Estonia live many people, whose mother tongue is not Estonian but in spite of this they have full right to live here with dignity and feel them self comfortable.

We adore the wish of foreign Estonians to preserve the Estonian language and culture - their identity. Foreign Estonians can be compared to the Russians in Estonia, and as there exist many "Estonian Houses" there could be "Russian Houses" in Estonia to keep the society together and to develop the culture. Local language should be learned but it shouldn't be done by the price of loosing the native language. But for the accusation of language the linguistic environment is essential, so it should be our goal, to create the united cultural space for all the inhabitants.

It's impossible to compete with Russian TV in meaning of entertainment, but at least the neutral news reports for Russian speaking society should be provided. ETV and Eesti raadio should play an important role in creating the common infospace, the way it has to be done is still unclear but hopefully will be developed in closest future. It's important, that the state will express it's own vision to the national broadcasting company, which will provide the suggested solution and correspondent expenses. There are researchers, who've managed to Russian culture to the Estonians, now we need such ones, who would do the same in opposite direction.

As a part of infospace also the governmental web pages should be available in Russian, not only Estonian and English. Even the page of G.W.Bush exists also in Spanish, which is spoken by 15% of population, but the percentage of Russian speaking people in Estonia is twice higher.
People should be interested in Estonian life and culture, but it can be achieved only by doing something. The knowledge of language is essential for both sides.
The good point of crises is that they push the wheels to spin, thou the goal is to change Estonia to a state, where people understand each other's mind and language.
* * *

Yes, the idea of "Russian Houses" is not bad, the question is, can the state support them? The main problem is to find young people (preferably with no soviet thinking it their heads), who could start such culture centers. As far as i know there are kind of Russian Houses in Tallinn, Narva, Kohtla-Järve, the one in Tartu has died long time ago. I can't be sure about the financial support of them, in Tartu it was kept by one company owned by Russian speaking people and after the company got bankrupted, activity of the house was significantly reduced.

The other problem is IMHO in old-time soviet administrators, who mind first about their purses. There was some info in media, that the most of money provided for renovation of the center of Russian culture in Tallinn have been spent suspicious way. I suspect the same concerns the program of integration, just many people have seen in it the way to easy money.
What can be done with it? I think it's the social responsibility, what is missing in our society, the soviet heritage, there was such an expression "everything belongs to the state belongs us". But in order people to be more responsible their confidence to the state should raise as well. And it's a big question, how the state could manage to get the confidence of the majority from both sides, i mean the supporters and the opponents.

About the internet media in Russian I'd say it's also in really bad condition. Giustino just pointed out, that there exist russian versions of Postimees, Paevaleht, and Estonian television. I'm sorry, but it's impossible to compare those versions with the originals, actually i didn't use the russian website of Estonian television, but the ETV daily news report in russian is significantly different from the one in estonian. Es ist ja zum kotzen! The same about Postimees and P'evaleht, the amount of information differs drastically, there are almost only the news from BNS in the russian version.

The most annoying fact is that frequently the provided information is not neutral, and you have to read/watch both versions to get the real picture. IMHO the newspapers should be just straight translated, TV programs - subtitled. Would be better, if all the programs on ETV would be subtitled, but it's not so easy. BTW, yesterday i've read that the information on russian Delfi will be censored, today there's almost nothing to read. This must be the policy of the owner, not the state? No idea...