Globalization’s Effects on Broadcast Journalism and Global News Coverage
I originally planned on covering globalization’s effects on broadcast journalism, but I realized that my idea was much too broad. I eventually narrowed it down to how globalization affects global news coverage. This allowed me to focus on how our global news is produced and transmitted around the world today compared to global news coverage in the past. Without global news coverage, humans would have no idea what was going on in the world around them. Missionaries wouldn’t exist, activists would only be concerned with their local issues, and the human race would be extremely uncultured. Think back to the terrorist attacks on September 11th, 2001.
-The first five minutes of news coverage on the Twin Tower attacks.
Countries all over the world heard about the attacks almost immediately. People all over the world sympathized with the United States and anxiously waited for more news. Had this tragic event happened 30 years earlier, individuals all around the world wouldn’t have had a clue what had happened for days, perhaps even weeks. A smaller world equals faster news. But how do they acquire the news, and how is it being broadcast all over the world?
Where It All Begins
Without news agencies, global news coverage would never be able to exist. A news agency is an organization that supplies print and broadcast outlets with news information. (White, Andrew. “From the Living Room to the World: The Globalization of Television News.” Globalization and Media. Web.) News agencies are responsible for acquiring news from around the world, translating the news into the accurate language, edit and synthesize. The news agencies prepare hard news stories so people around the world can understand, regardless of culture or language spoken. Once the news agencies have finished editing the news, they sell it to other news organizations. For example, the Associated Press is one of the most successful news agencies today. They directly distribute “transformed” news to the world’s top broadcasters. It is well known by broadcasting stations that producing more global news will eventually create a more successful news station. “The key to the success (or lack of success) of a news agency lies in its ability to cover news on an international basis.” (White, Andrew. “From the Living Room to the World: The Globalization of Television News.” Globalization and Media. Web.)
The Transmission of Global News
Once the news has been edited by the news agencies, they send these articles using telegraphy, which is a long-distance transmission of written messages through wires; or more recently, the Internet. The Internet has allowed news agencies to transmit news articles quicker and more efficiently than ever before. With the creation of News Magazine Programs came a new format of news programs that could be translated and transmitted much easier.
Controversy in Global News Coverage
While there are many positive effects that come with global news coverage, there are also the few negative effects as well. Because of the television networks and newspapers heavy reliance on the news agencies, the news agencies have the unique ability to control the world news agenda. (White, Andrew. “From the Living Room to the World: The Globalization of Television News.” Globalization and Media. Web.) Many international press groups have noticed that global news has become more “Americanized”, creating a distinct gap or division between America and the rest of the world. “Instead of uniting the “global news village”, the news has placed a wedge between civilizations.” (White, Andrew. “From the Living Room to the World: The Globalization of Television News.” Globalization and Media. Web.) News agencies have begun to recognize their power over the world’s global news, and they have been criticized as being “state-run media”. This problem could very well have risen from translation issues.
Translation of Global News
The translation of foreign news to places around the world is a very important part of the global news process. Unfortunately it would be very easy for foreign broadcast stations to confuse the news agency’s translation. Programs known as “news magazine programs” became popular in the 1970’s, with the arrival of the news program called “60 Minutes”. News agencies quickly learned that news magazine programs were much easier to export around the world than local news was. The news magazine programs were easier to translate into foreign languages. Local news seemed almost impossible to translate, whereas news magazine programs featured a “more accessible narrative.” (White, Andrew. “From the Living Room to the World: The Globalization of Television News.” Globalization and Media. Web.) Soon local news broadcasting stations around America changed their news-writing format to match that of a news magazine program. They began to use powerful visuals and they cut down their story lengths in order to keep their audience members attention.
How the Internet has Affected Global News Coverage
The Internet has allowed people from all walks of life easy access to news that is happening all over the world. People no longer have to wait for their news to be delivered to them on by the local paperboy. The Internet has created a completely different way of accessing content. We also no longer are required to pay for the news. By simply opening up the Internet and going to a news website such as CNN.com or even WCCO.com, an individual can learn about breaking news from the comforts of their own home. The Internet has also revolutionized news content and how it is presented. “If you say something provocatively, in a new way, or with an unexpected spin, you will succeed online. If you play it safe, you will not.” (The Internet Effect on News. TIME, 24 Mar. 2008. Web. 12 Dec. 2009. http://swampland.blogs.time.com/2008/03/24/the_internet_effect_on_news/.)
Nowadays, in order to succeed in the online journalism business, one must write provocatively. Being edgy and controversial will bring more readers to your website. For instance, Perez Hilton’s celebrity gossip site gained almost instant popularity after The Insider named it “Hollywood’s Most Hated Website” in 2003. Perez Hilton is famous for his crude remarks and negative stories that he posts about celebrities, actors and musicians. In fact, Hilton was mentioned in pop singer Fergie’s 2006 hit, Pedestal. Stacy Ferguson has confirmed that she is talking about Hilton when she says, “So why you gotta throw salt in my game? You hide behind the computer screens so that you don’t have to be seen. How could a person be so mean?” The Internet has allowed anyone, regardless of skill, experience or intelligence to post news for millions of readers to see. It has also proved that in order to succeed as an online journalist, one must make their news stories controversial and edgy.
How Global News Coverage Has Been Affected by News Magazine Programs
In the 1970’s, a news program called “60 Minutes” aired for the first time on television. This specific format of news broadcasting created a completely new narrative for news programs. These programs had an in-depth approach on one or two news stories throughout the entire show. Eventually the evening news changed its format to resemble the news magazine programs. News agencies quickly realized that these programs were much easier to translate for foreign audiences and they were also able to turn a profit, unlike the evening news. By selling news magazine programs, news agencies were able to make more advertising dollars.
The Future of Global News Coverage
Just as Katie mentioned in her part, the Internet’s effect on Professional Journalism is just another revolution in the journalism process. Our journalists will need to adapt to the changes that are caused by globalization if they want to be successful in the journalism career track. The effects of globalization will certainly bring both positives and negatives to our rapidly shrinking world. Globalization factors like the Internet will allow people with an Internet connection to access global news on a 24-hour basis. Our society will be more closely linked together because of the Internet. On the other hand, globalization factors that are affecting the way our global news is produced and transmitted will be negatively affected as well. Our society will most certainly run into cultural issues, such as the problem we have today with our global news coverage being “Americanized.” Regardless of whether the globalization effects are positive or negative on our global news coverage, it is clear that globalization will keep increasing for many years to come.
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