Volume 2, No. 2
Special issue: (De-)Westernizing Media and Journalism Studies: Demarcating, Transcending and Subverting Borders
Anne Grüne & Dirk-Claas Ulrich: Editorial
Peer Reviewed Articles
International news production in post-Soviet Ukraine: Where is the ‘center’? (article in English)
The Logic of Political Media Scandals in Japan and the Case Study of Ozawa Ichirō (article in English)
Communication Studies beyond the National: Connections and Disconnections between Research Communities and How to Study Them (article in English)
Sarah El Richani
Comparing Media Systems in the ‘West’ and beyond (article in English)
From the Field
Researching Media Assistance as a Tool of Democratisation and State building in Post Conflict Societies – Lessons from the Case of Bosnia and Herzegovina (article in English)
Universal Principles of Media Ethics: South African and German Perspectives (article in English)
Rohit Chopra/Radhika Gajjala (Hrsg.): Global Media, Culture, and Identity (2011) (review in German)
Shadia Husseini de Araujo: Jenseits vom „Kampf der Kulturen“. Imaginative Geographien des Eigenen und Anderen in arabischen Printmedien (2011) (review in German)
This paper focuses on the geography of news sources and news flows, which are involved in international news production in Ukraine. It seeks answers to the following questions: which sources – Western-based media and global news agencies or their competitors from other parts of the world (first of all from Russia) – are preferred in the making of international news in Ukraine? What are the possible reasons of this preference? How does information on foreign affairs created by abroad news producers reach Ukrainian newsrooms? The analysis is based on interviews with 35 media experts and news producers at major Ukrainian broadcasting organizations, as well as from print and online media. The interviewees ― editors-in-chief, heads of international news’ departments, foreign correspondents ― were asked about the process of international news production in their editorial offices, the human and technical resources allocated for foreign news coverage, the professional standards of international journalism, as well as the main sources of foreign news and criteria of their selection involved in the news making process. An important finding of the presented research is the conclusion about indirect, or circuitous movement of foreign news from international news agencies to the Ukrainian media. Because of the peculiarities of Ukrainian news production described in the paper, news from Reuters or Associated Press regularly reaches Ukrainian editorial offices after it has been processed by Russian newsmakers.
First of all we wish to reveal certain universally-structuralist qualities, same as culturally-relative features of scandals and their mediation in a non-Western society. Secondly, we will illuminate how the mass media take active part in processing political issues in Japan, where as anywhere else in the media-saturated modern industrial world politicians significantly depend on the media (and vice versa); where political live shows and news programs – including scandals – became an important force, at times driving public sentiment while eventually generating support for opposition; and where wealth and its surplus is inevitably tied to a higher potential to grasp and secure power. We will then proceed to the main part of the paper, where we focus more closely on Japanese political scandals whereby preparing theoretical ground for a discourse analysis in the scandal case study of Ozawa Ichirō – one of the most powerful political heavyweights, and simultaneously one of the epitomes of political corruption in Japan. In our endeavor we were motivated by the fact that there exists plethora of literature on scandals in the west, but a detailed media discourse analysis of Japanese scandals is still lacking in academia worldwide.
This essay is dealing with a self-reflection in communication studies on existing blind spots between national communication research communities and milieus. The author presents recent debates on communication studies under international comparison, including their focus on historical developments and disciplinary boundaries of the field. She discusses the lack of knowledge about transnational influences between scientific communities in the field of communication research as well as central categories to grasp the social as well as the body of knowledge in Science (like “generation” a term which understands scientific milieus as experience communities in the sense of Karl Mannheim). The underlying argument is, that only a meta-science perspective from an historical viewpoint allows the understanding of our actual theory building and methodological settings which is confronted with future problems, especially the transnationalisation of communication flows as well as of scientific knowledge.
Hallin and Mancini’s book Comparing Media Systems has been hailed as seminal work sparking several attempts at applying both the models and theoretical framework to media systems around the world. The following essay discusses important considerations on taking this framework beyond the confines of the Western world.
In order to investigate the relationship between censorship and popular uprisings, I survey trends in repression of information across Iran and the Arab states of the Middle East & North Africa over several decades to see if the recent wave of popular mobilization appears to respond to changes in the degree of repression in particular countries. I argue that while the available data is inconclusive, there is little support for the idea that partial liberalization provokes revolutionary outbreaks and conversely some support for high or increasing repression of expression as a contributor to regime-challenging popular mobilization.
The increasingly globalised nature of media and journalism has led to a review of ethical standards, mainly to find universal ethical values which are applicable in a world with countless different cultures. This article attempts to address this field of research in comparing South African and German approaches to the topic of media ethics. Firstly, it outlines theories of universal and specific cultural ethical principles in journalism. Secondly, it shows how the conception of universal ethical principles, so called protonorms, is interpreted differently in the two cultures and how specific cultural values of media ethics are rated among the two cultural frameworks of Germany and South Africa. An online survey conducted among German and South African journalism students found significant differences in the ranking of media ethics principles as well as similarities and differences in the interpretations of protonorms. The results support existing normative theories of universal media ethics, such as the theory of protonorms, in contributing explorative empirical data to this field of mainly theoretical research.