The telephone system (17,000 main telephone lines in 1997) is operated by the government, while international cable and wireless services are operated privately. In 1997, there were about 205 cellular phones in use.
ZIZ Radio and Television is owned and operated by the government; Radio Paradise broadcasts from Basseterre; and Trinity Broadcasting is based on Nevis. Radio broadcasting began in 1961, and television broadcasting in 1972. In 2001, there were three AM and one FM radio stations and two television stations. In 1997 there were 575 radios and 273 television sets in use per 1,000 population. In 2000, there were 16 Internet service providers serving 2,000 subscribers.
There are two major newspapers. The Labour Spokesman, founded in 1957, is published twice weekly and had a 2002 circulation of 6,000. The Democrat, which is published weekly, had a circulation of 3,500.
The constitution provides for freedom of speech and the press, and the government is said to generally respect these rights. However, because the government owns the only radio and TV stations, these media are said to inadequately cover opposition rallies and other events.