When Slovenian television viewers turned on their TV sets to watch the main evening news on April 15, 1968, they noticed something very different. For the first time ever, the news was in Slovenian.
Up to that point, the main evening newscast had always been always produced in Belgrade. It was broadcast in the Serbo-Croatian language, which many people in Slovenia couldn’t understand well. The TV station in Ljubljana did produce its own regional news, but national and world news were always seen from a Belgrade perspective.
In 1968, TV Ljubljana decided to go its own way. At the time, centralist political forces in Belgrade were on the decline, and Slovenian television was able to launch its own evening news, despite some protests from Belgrade. Within a few months, a news team was in place and the first Slovenian newscast went on the air. The technology was limited, and not many staffers had much experience, but the news went out as planned, without any major glitches.
Of course, TV Ljubljana’s news was still politically one-sided at the time. But when political liberalization arrived in the late 1980s, and the Yugoslav crisis began to escalate, Slovenian viewers were able to watch history unfold from a Slovenian perspective – and in their own language.
Source: RTVSLO.si | Jaka Bertolj
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