The Meaning of Global News Channels’ ‘New’ Scramble for African Media Space

TitleThe Meaning of Global News Channels’ ‘New’ Scramble for African Media Space
Publication TypeConference Paper
Author(s)Ndlovu, M. W.
Affiliation (1st Author)University of Cape Town
Section or WGInternational Communication Section
DateThurs 27 June
Slot CodeINCT4b
Slot Code (Keyword)INCT4b
Time of Session16:00-17:30
Session TitleThe Meaning of Global News Channels’ ‘New’ Scramble for African Media Space
Submission ID6976

Following the launch of CNBC Africa (United States), CCTV Africa (China), CNN Voices of Africa (United States), BBC focus on Africa (United Kingdom) and e. News Channel Africa (South Africa), this paper critically examines the meaning of expansion of global news channels into African media sphere. The paper asks and answers the following questions,, is this expansion a combination of new and old media imperialism? Is there really threat to the development of the national/local media of recipient countries? Are news channels based in developing countries counterbalancing media imperialism or are they disguising their own in the name of south-south cooperation? Can the new expansion foster new forms of cooperation among developing countries in the areas such as programme exchange, human resource development and local media content production? Is this a concrete realisation of south-south cultural solidarity as conceived in New World Information Order (NWICO)? International communication field, scholarly, overwhelmingly examines the domination of southern nations’ information and cultural spheres by Western media, especially American media products. In this regard, the field traditionally employs theoretical frameworks such as cultural imperialism (Galtung), media imperialism (Lee), cultural domination. (Schiller), cultural dependency (Boyd-Barret), cultural synchronisation (Hamelink), reversed cultural imperialism (Tomlinson) or cultural globalisation (Servaes, Lie and Terzis). The renewed expansion into African media space, this paper argues, destabilises conceptual validity of some of these theoretical assumptions and analytical frameworks through which the field of international communication continues to assess the power balance of global communication flow.

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