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Media and Globalisation MEVIT 3220 & MEVIT4220. Globalisation and National Responses: Policy and Regulation Dumisani Moyo. Main Texts for today’s lecture. Van Binsbergen and van Dijk Tomasellis & Heuva, Horwitz: Resistance, negotiation Sonwalker: Murdochisation

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media and globalisation mevit 3220 mevit4220

Media and Globalisation MEVIT 3220 & MEVIT4220

Globalisation and National Responses: Policy and Regulation

Dumisani Moyo

main texts for today s lecture
Main Texts for today’s lecture
  • Van Binsbergen and van Dijk
  • Tomasellis & Heuva, Horwitz: Resistance, negotiation
  • Sonwalker: Murdochisation
  • Miller: Global Hollywood and division of labour
national responses policy regulation
National Responses: Policy & Regulation
  • Intro:
  • Weak states, failed states, the nation-state project?
  • Africa in the global debate
    • Relevance to global economy - Castelles
    • Source of raw materials, little processing
    • Victimhood
    • Colonisation, plunder and dispossession
    • National TV, foreign images
    • Global media situation: M-Net, CFI, BBC, VOA, etc
cultural imperialism debate
Cultural imperialism debate
  • Cultural imperialism and resistance: the 60s (particularly in Latim America)
    • Expansion of American TNCs to S. America in 60s and 70s gave rise to this debate; along with American mass culture, mass products
    • Cultural imperialism debate & NWICO debates
    • Walter Rodney: How Europe Underdeveloped Africa
    • Belgian Amand Mattelart, Hebert Schiller (USA), and Canadian Dallas Smythe
    • Influenced by Gramsci, the Frankfurt School
critique decline of cultural imperialism
Critique & decline of cultural imperialism
  • Central to cultural imperialism thesis was the aspect of victimhood … Cultural domination N/S, atomised society at mercy of cultural industry
  • But by the late 70s, questions were being raised about the claimed international influence of mass culture, about passive receivers of mass mediated messages
  • Katz and Liebes (1984) Once Upon a Time in Dallas: different readings, sociao-cultural frames in decoding - diversity rather than homogeneous
critique and decline cultural imperialism
Critique and Decline: Cultural imperialism…
  • Challenge also came from ‘active audience’ theories - audience resistance
  • John Fiske (1986) - polysemic reading of texts
  • Stuart Hall (1973) - preferred meaning (Encoding and Decoding …)
  • Oppositional meanings, e.g. portrayal of women
critique and decline cultural imperialism8
Critique and Decline: Cultural imperialism…
  • So, is cultual imperialism dead??
    • Not quite
    • Term expanded to mean not just American domination, but also TNCs from Europe, Asis, etc. though USA still dominant
    • Oliver Boyd Barrett’s work on news flows between North and South still influential
    • Cultural imperialism and literary theory
    • Still many forms of resistance to cultural imperialism - active and passive
    • Ngugi wa Thiong’o - there has always been resistance
neoliberalism and the developing world
Neoliberalism and the Developing World
  • Dying down of resistance discourse (cultural imperialism and NWICO) and ascendance of neo-liberalism in the 80s
  • IMF/WB, trade regimes such as GATTs, WTO and the drive for privatisation, deregulation opening up of markets
  • Role of consultants, global civil society in spreading the new ideas
  • Reforms in telecomms
the wider context
The wider context …

The Four waves of marketisation

  • 1. Policy changes in the USA from the 1980s onwards
  • 2. Changes in other industrialised countries (Western Europe, Canada, Australia, etc). See, e.g, Humphreys, 1996; Collins and Murroni, 1996; Levy 1999 etc.
  • 3. Changes in transitional and mixed societies (see, e.g. Curran and Park, 2000; Price et al. 2002)
  • 4. Convergence, and new laws that seek to reflect these changes (Hesmondhalgh, 2002)
african responses
African responses …
  • Van Binsbergen and van Dijk: African Agency in Appropriation of Global Culture
    • Responses of African societies to various forms of globalisation: reinterpretation of Christian faith and domestication of certain practices
    • Creative appropriation of global culture - the new ICTs and the traditional mass media
    • Reflexivity
    • Gewald and the hijacking of CNN - linked to Sonwalker’s article on Murdochization
african responses some cases
African responses: some cases …
  • But how did African countries respond in terms of media policies?
  • South Africa: Negotiated liberalisation (Horwitz, 2001; Heuva and Tomasellis, 2004)
  • Zambia: Reluctant liberalisation
  • Zimbabwe: Musical chairs?
media policy and regulation
Media Policy and Regulation

Supranational Ragulatory Frameworks

  • SADC Protocol on Transport and Communications
  • TRASA Telecoms Regulators Association of Southern Africa
  • COMESA – towards harmonisation of ICT policy
  • African Charter on Broadcasting (MISA, USAID, OSISA)
  • Declaration on Human and People’s Rights
south african response
South African response
  • Robert Horwitz’ central argument is that,
  • “Though globalisation creates pressures, opportunities, and constraints, communications reforms are shaped largely by domestic actors through domestic political institutions” (Horwitz, 2001).
  • Domestic political environment shapes media policy
south african response15
South African Response
  • Brief historical background: SA

- First colonised by the Dutch, then the British

- Under Apartheid grip for since the late 1940s

- The media served white interests, and used as a tool of repression

  • Broadcasting in particular was used as a tool for divide and rule (Bantustan radio)
  • Public service broadcasting and John Reith
south african response16
South African response
  • Converging interests on the eve of independence in 1993:
      • The NP feared the prospect of having broadcasting in the hands of a black majority government in the post-independence era
      • Nelson Mandela’s ANC on the other hand feared the idea of going into elections with the SABC in the control of the NP
      • The NP therefore wanted to move with haste to privatise the SABC, which would guarantee continued white ownership
south african responses
South African Responses …
  • Broadcasting and nation-building: 11 official languages
  • Three tier broadcasting system comprising of public service, commercial and community broadcasters - all mandated with a public service role
south africa and the region
South Africa and the region …
  • Some recent developments:
      • SA has moved way ahead of even most European countries in terms of setting up a converged regulator (ICASA) (Collins, 2004).
      • Influence of South African model in the Southern African region
  • Reluctant despite donor pressure
    • Licensing Christian community broadcasters
    • Selective implementation of new laws (the ZNBC Act and the IBA Act of 2002
    • Monopoly has been broken, but state broadcaster remains dominant
    • No independent regulator appointed despite new law
  • Change without change: playing musical chairs
    • Extreme resistance: 75% local content
    • Ban on foreign ownership in broadcasting
    • Ban on foreign reporters operating within
    • More repressive laws
    • No independent regulation
    • State monopoly broadcasting persists
some implications
Some implications …
  • The state still matters
    • Policy still shaped at the national level despite weakness of the African state
    • Global pressure for communications reform have produced varied instead of homogeneous responses
    • The poor can creatively appropriate, negotiate and even domesticate global culture
    • African film, URTNA, SABA, Nollywood
    • Cultural imperialism?
    • Unbalanced flows sill persist …