The Bangkok Post is an English-language newspaper published daily in Bangkok, Thailand. It is posted in broadsheet and virtual formats. The first paper was launched on 1 August 1946. It had four pages and was priced at one baht, a sizable amount at the time when a baht had a value of a paper note. It’s by far Thailand’s oldest newspaper, being published still today. The daily distribution of the Bangkok Post is about 110,000, eighty percentage of it is distributed in Bangkok while the rest nationwide. It’s seen as a newspaper of report for Thailand.
From July 2016 upto mid-May 2018, the Bangkok Post editor was Umesh Pandey. On 14 May 2018, Pandey was “forced to step down” as editor after refusing to do critical coverage of the ruling army junta.
The Bangkok post was created by Alexander MacDonald, a former OSS officer, and his Thai companion, Prasit Lulitanond. Thailand, at that time, was the only one Southeast Asian country to have a Soviet Embassy. The U.S. embassy felt the need of an unbiased but generally americanized newspaper to counter Soviet visions. A few claim the financing directly came from the United States state department or probably even the OSS itself, despite the fact that there’s no proof of it.
Nevertheless, underneath MacDonald’s stewardship, the Bangkok Post became relatively unbiased and employed many young journalists, such as Peter Arnett and T. D. Allman, who later became recognized worldwide. Alex MacDonald left Thailand after a military overtake in the early 1950s, and the agency was later handled by Roy Thomson. The paper has since then changed many hands. Major shareholders in Post Publishing are the Chirathivat family (proprietors of Central Groups), the South China Morning Post of Hong Kong, and GMM Grammy PCL, Thailand’s most famous media and entertainment corporation.
Post Publishing PLC, a publisher of the Bangkok Post, Post Today (a daily Thai language commercial enterprise), and M2F (free Thai language daily ) newspapers returned a modest profit of 450,000 baht in 2016 compared to a 42.1 million baht loss in 2015.
On 14 May 2018, Pandey was “forced to step down” as editor after refusing to perform the critical coverage of the ruling army junta. He said the board of administrators had asked him to “tone down” the newspaper’s reporting and editorials on the moves of the military authorities, especially its suppression of freedom of speech and election postponements. In a written declaration by Pandey issued on 14 May, he stated, “While requested to tone down, I did no longer budge and became blunt in letting people who make choices understand that I would prefer losing my job than bowing my head.” The Post issued a declaration on 16 May to assure its readers of its persistent dedication to “editorial independence.” A senior Post official stated, “This is not an issue of government intervention or press freedom with se…That is, in reality, an private organizational problem.” Pandey was not fired but transferred to some other high-ranking post as assistant to a deputy COO at no deduction of salary. A few resources from the agency attributed Pandey’s expulsion as editor to his poor managing style and ethical breaches. Some staff members who worked with Pandey noted his behavior as an adverse action in workplace environment and unprofessional conduct. Five current and previous staffers blamed him for riding away many newsroom employees, creating toxic surroundings, and breaching ethics. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha denied that the government forced the Post to reassign Pandey, disregarding the action as “an issue within a personal agency.”
The Bangkok Post employs (April 2015) 179 reporters, along with newshounds, rewriters, editors, copy editors, photographers, and designers. Twenty-nine overseas nationals work as copy editors and print and virtual information editors. Sunday editor Paul Ruffini is an Australian citizen. Many Post staff reporters are Thai nationals, as fluency in Thai is required. Overseas team of workers writes for the newspaper’s news, op-ed, sports, commercial enterprise, and features sections.
In a state where media censorship is common, the Bangkok Post portrays itself as being relatively free. There are instances in which the newspaper has been accused of self-censorship to keep away from controversy or conflict with effective people, along with adherence to the United States’s strict lèse-majesté law, which prohibits open complaints of contributors of the Thai Royal Circle of relatives. But some other examples become the newspaper’s failure all through the Vietnam War to file on bombing forays crafted from U.S. Air pressure bases in Thailand over army objectives in North Vietnam and Cambodia, none of which acquired coverage within the nearby press.
At some point in the early 2000s, the Bangkok Post took positions that were, at times, usually favorable to the government. After the Thai election of 2011, the paper took a significant part in the anti-Thaksin function aligned with the Yellow Shirts and the Democrat party.
The Bangkok Post changed into a one-time widely known among expatriates for Bernard Trink’s weekly Nite Owl column, which covered the nightlife of Bangkok. Trink’s column was posted from 1966 (initially inside the Bangkok world) until 2004 when it was discontinued. The newspaper has a letters web page wherein expatriate and Thai regulars alternate opinions on neighborhood and worldwide concerns. The publisher says more than half of its general readership is Thai nationals.
In the course of the tenure of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, the submit in large part toed the authorities line—at one factor bowing to government stress by way of firing a reporter who had exposed cracks within the runway of the prestige assignment Suvarnabhumi Airport at the side of the information editor, while The kingdom, the publish’s competitor, actively campaigned for Thaksin to resign.
Bangkok Post columnist Andrew Biggs, who had previously worked at The Nation, sees the Post as the “greater staid” of the two dailies. He referred to that each publication had been “…champions of democracy. The nation becomes only a little more vocal about it.” Biggs’s column within the Bangkok make-up was ended with the 30 December 2019 edition.