Korea, Republic of (ROK) - Media

In 2000, the number of main telephone lines in use totaled 24 million, with an additional 28 million cellular phones in use the same year. As of 2001, there were 104 AM and 136 FM radio stations, and 121 television broadcast stations. Television broadcasting began in 1956; in 1992 there were 57 commercial television stations, plus a US Armed Forces–Korea network broadcasting in English. In 2000, there were 1,033 radios and 364 television sets for every 1,000 people. In 2001, there were 22.23 million Internet subscribers served by about 11 service providers.

Most of the leading newspapers are published in Seoul. The leading Korean-language newspapers, with their estimated daily circulations (in 2002), include Dong-A Ilbo, 2,150,000; Joongang Ilbo, 2,020,000; Hankook Ilbo, 2,000,000; Choson Ilbo, 1,960,000; Kyung-hyang Shinmun, 1,478,540; and Seoul Shinmun, 700,000.

Though most radio and television stations and newspapers are state-supported, the government is said to have abandoned direct control over the news media, though some journalists report aggressive government lobbying to soften criticism, using the latent threat of KX investigations against media companies.

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