Chinese listeners from Mainland China and from other parts of Asia
The Listeners of the Mandarin Service
In the 1980s, when the policy in China towards religion became more relaxed, many Catholic families caught up with the SW fever. Some families even owned two SW radios. These units were permanently fixed to Radio Vatican and Radio Veritas Asia. The survey of the Mandarin listeners in 2005 showed that there still such devoted listeners in Hebei Province, the area which has the biggest Chinese Catholic population.
However, the survey in June 2007 presents another picture about the listeners of the Mandarin program. As a result of the economic development in China, the SW listeners of the Mandarin broadcast began to dwindle. On the other hand, young listeners began to follow the Mandarin programs through its website, www.tianzhou.org.
In the month of August 2007, the website of the Mandarin Service showed that the total number of browsers reached 31,595. Daily, there are 1,019 visitors who browse or listen to the broadcast and the estimated percentage of listeners in China is around 27.8%
According to the ALEXA web search, the RVA Mandarin website – wwwtianzhou - ranks fourth in the existing one hundred Catholic Chinese websites. Fortunately, the RVA Mandarin Website is seldom blocked by the internet police in China.
One web visitor wrote: “On July 2, I was desperately searching for the Pope’s letter to the Church in China while many Catholic websites in China were blocked. Luckily I was able to download it from your website. You could not imagine how relieved I was when I had it in my hands. A million thanks to your webmaster.” The feedback writer was anonymous. (2007-08-25, 12:06:49)
The survey also showed that there is a growing interest in the spiritual dimension among the young Chinese in China. To answer the need of the youth, the Mandarin broadcast increased the percentage of youth programs. Among the 80 programs posted on the website, around 25% of them are geared towards the youth. They include features which are informational, educational and recreational, to wit, programs like learning English, music, Bible and values education.
The report of the government agency China Internet Network Information Center on July 18, 2007 gave the Mandarin broadcast a good reference for the coming year’s production. The report said that 12.3% of the population in China are internet users and 36.7% of these users are young people.
The youth use the internet mostly to get news and information, entertainment and communication. The RVA Mandarin broadcast has indeed seen a great opportunity in bringing the Good News to China through modern technology. The Mandarin broadcast will certainly take all the opportunities to maintain and keep the programs as relevant as possible for the audience.
A million thanks to the generous donors who have been supporting the ministry of the Mandarin broadcast