Singapore profile - Media

Readers scan the papers in Singapore Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Singapore Press Holdings has a virtual monopoly on newspapers

Singapore's media environment is highly controlled. Self-censorship among journalists is common, there are curbs on online content, and private ownership of satellite dishes is not allowed.

Foreign broadcasters and publications "can be restricted for engaging in domestic politics", reports US-based Freedom House.

Two players dominate the media scene. Singapore Press Holdings, which has close links to the ruling party, has a virtual monopoly of the newspaper industry. MediaCorp, owned by a state investment agency, operates TV and radio stations.

Singapore is a regional pioneer of high-definition and mobile TV services. The government's multi-million dollar "Media 21" blueprint aims to turn the country into a regional hub for the digital media industry and to create thousands of jobs.

The BBC World Service broadcasts on 88.9 FM.

There were 4 million internet users by June 2012 (InternetWorldStats). There is token filtering of pornographic sites, but licensing controls and legal pressures are used to regulate internet access and curb "objectionable" content, says OpenNet Initiative.

There were nearly 3 million Facebook users by late 2012, and half of all internet users have Twitter accounts. Singapore is home to around 100,000 bloggers.

Political debate has found an outlet online, but those who post political material are expected to register with the authorities. The ruling party and opposition parties are active on Facebook.

The press

Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) - publishes 15 newspapers and six periodicals

The Straits Times - published by SPH

Business Times - published by SPH

Today - published by Mediacorp


MediaCorp - operates entertainment-based Channel 5 and Channel 8, Malay channel Suria, Mandarin-language Channel U

Channel NewsAsia - news TV operated by MediaCorp


MediaCorp - operates more than a dozen stations including English-language news and talk station 938Live, music stations and Chinese, Malay and Indian services

SPH Unionworks - operates English-language Hot FM and Kiss 92, Mandarin station UFM