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Globalised media


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Primary material


The World Summit on the Information Society  [open access]

UN General Assembly Resolution 56/183 (21 December 2001) [open access]

Geneva Declaration of Principles and Geneva Plan of Action  [open access]

Tunis Commitment and Tunis Agenda for the Information Society [open access

Declaration on Fundamental Principles concerning the Contribution of the Mass Media to Strengthening Peace and International Understanding, to the Promotion of Human Rights and to Countering Racialism, Apartheid and Incitement to War, UNESCO, 28 November 1978 [open access]

UNESCO Division of Freedom of Expression and Media Development (FEM)

“The main tasks include sensitizing governments, public institutions and civil society on freedom of expression and freedom of the press, including through the celebration ofWorld Press Freedom Day. Notably, the Division assists UNESCO’s Member States in developing standards and legal instruments for press freedom and freedom of information in accordance with internationally recognized standards, and monitors the state of the safety of journalists, including impunity as regards violence against journalists.

The Division is also responsible for mobilizing international support for the International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) and, in this context, for assisting UNESCO’s Member States in the development of free, independent and pluralistic media, in line with the Media Development Indicators (MDI).

It is responsible for setting standards for journalism education and for supporting the role of media in fostering inclusive dialogue, especially in conflict-sensitive situations. Moreover, the Division works in fostering media pluralism, particularly by promoting community media and fostering media and information literacy. “

International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC)

“The IPDC is the only multilateral forum in the UN system designed to mobilize the international community to discuss and promote media development in developing countries. The Programme not only provides support for media projects but also seeks an accord to secure a healthy environment for the growth of free and pluralistic media in developing countries.”

United Nations Sub-commission on Freedom of Information and the Press

United Nations Conference on Freedom of Information

International Press Institute


Consultation Paper on Foreign Direct Investment in Broadcasting Sector in India’,  Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Consultation Paper No: 7/2013, July 2013 [open access]

Department of Industrial Promotion and Policy, Consolidated FDI Policy (2013)

Theoretical material


International Commission for the Study of Communication Problems, ‘Many Voices, One World’ (MacBride Commission Report), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, 1980 [open access]
Kaarle Nordenstreng and Tapio Varis, Television traffic – a one-way street? A survey and analysis of the international flow of television programme material, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Reports and Papers on Mass Communication No. 70, Paris.

George Gerbner and George Marvanyi. ‘The Many Worlds of the World’s Press’, Journal of Communication, Winter, 1977

This is the report of a multinational comparative study of foreign news coverage designed to explore the similarities and differences in the images of the “outside world” that each type of society projects for its members. The study included 60 daily papers published in nine countries across the world.

Robert W McChesney, ‘Global media, Neoliberalism, and Imperialism’, 52(10) Monthly Review 1 (Mar 2001); Alt-Press Watch (APW)

This article locates the globalised media system as an extension of, and an essential adjunct to, the larger expansion of the neoliberal market, characterising it as a “global oligopoly” dominated by rapidly expanding American firms, and involving consolidation and convergence. It also observes that hearteningly, progressive and anti-neoliberal political movements are emphasising structural media reform as part of their agenda.

Ingrid Volkmer, International Communication Theory in Transition: Parameters of the New Global Public Sphere [open access]

This article is a reflection on how the “international information order” has rendered obsolete conventional patterns of international communication. It emphasises the importance of international communication theory in studying this new “global public sphere”.

Ambirajan, S. Globalisation, Media and Culture 35(25) Economic and Political Weekly 2141 (June 17, 2000)

The author suggests that the globalisation of the media is leading to a globalised culture whose movement is towards uniformity and regimentation, without any discernible increase in the well-being of humanity. Consequently, cultures of minorities are lost and the trivial gains at the cost of the serious.

Mueller, Milton, Brenden Kuerbis, and Christiane Pagé. “Democratizing Global Communication? Global Civil Society and the Campaign for Communication Rights in the Information Society.” iSchool Faculty Scholarship (January 1, 2007) [open access]

This paper is a case study of the role of transnational advocacy networks (TANs) and multi-stakeholder governance processes in the formation of international communication-information policy. It documents the important role of the Campaign for Communication Rights in the Information Society (CRIS) in determining the norms and modalities of civil society participation in the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), and provides a critical assessment of the ideology of “communication rights.”

Eytan Gilboa, ‘Global Communication and Foreign Policy’, 52(4) Journal of Communication 731 (Dec 1, 2002); ABI/INFORM Global

This article examines the effects of global communication on the formulation and management of foreign policy, showing that while on the one hand it constrains leaders and officials, at the same time it also provides them with opportunities to advance their goals. It suggests that the field is in need of interdisciplinary research involving both communication and international relations.

Stephen D. Krasner, ‘Global Communications and National Power’, 43 World Politics 336 (April 1991) [open access]

This article attempts an economic analysis of global communications. It suggests that the nature of institutional arrangements and governance regimes is better explained by the distribution of national power capabilities than by efforts to solve problems of market failure.

Marc Raboy, ‘The WSIS as a Political Space in Global Media Governance’, 18(3) Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies 345 (September 2004)  [open access]

This paper reflects on the role of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in global communication governance. It details the history of attempts towards global communication governance under the UN system, and identifies the recognition of the role of civil society in the global governance process as a key achievement of the WSIS.

Monroe E. Price, “The Market for Loyalties: Electronic Media and the Global Competition for Allegiances.” The Yale Law Journal 104, no. 3 (December 1, 1994): 667–705. doi:10.2307/797114. [paid] but it is possible to read about the theory in later open-access papers such as Price, Monroe E., “Civil Society and the Global Market for Loyalties”, Annenberg School for Communication Departmental Papers (ASC), University of Pennsylvania, 2007

This article theorises the media space as a “market for loyalties”, where competitors use communication regulation to maintain power. Using the example of media regulation in the United States to explain the theory, it suggests that this theorisation helps explain legal and political responses to the globalisation of telecommunications.

Monroe E. Price, “The Market for Loyalties and a Global Communications Commission.” Departmental Papers (ASC) (January 1, 1994)

In this essay, the author examines the underlying tensions that make international agreement on a Global Communications Commission, with tough law-making and regulatory authority, so hard to achieve. Using the “market for loyalties” theory, the author suggests that law can effectively function only if there is consensus among the major competitors in this market, and postulates that media law and regulation, generally exists “for the convenience of those whom it is designed to serve”.

Manuel Puppis, National  Media  Regulation in the Era of Free Trade: The Role of Global Media Governance, 23(4) European Journal of Communication 405 (2008)

This article discusses the implications of the Global Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) for societal regulation of the media and the role of UNESCO’s new Convention on Cultural Diversity (CCD). It concludes that the liberalization of audiovisual services will prevent several media regulation measures, including support programmes for the audiovisual industry and the funding of public service broadcasting, and that UNESCO’s efforts to promote and protect cultural diversity are unlikely to stop this development.

Keval J. Kumar, W.E. Biernatzski S.J., ‘International News Flows’, 10(4) Communication Research Trends, (1990)

This article reviews the debate on international news flows and then examines some studies evaluating the actual state of international newsgathering, gatekeeping and transmission, the level and effects of the dominance of Western news agencies, as well as alternatives to these agencies in the developing world.

Stephen D. Reese, ‘Journalism and Globalization’, Sociology Compass 4/6 (2010): 344–353, 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

In this essay, the author reviews the intersection of journalism and globalization by considering the approach of the communication field to ‘media globalization’ within a “broader interdisciplinary perspective that mixes the sociology of globalization with aspects of geography and social anthropology”. With emphasis on social practices, and specific geographical spaces, the author attempts to introduce a less media-centric approach to media globalization, which captures the changes that globalization has brought to journalism.

Igor Vobič, ‘Journalism and Globalisation: Paradigms, Problems, Prospects’, 2(7) Journal of Mass Communication & Journalism (2012)

The article identifies three paradigms within media and globalisation discussions: media-technological, cultural and political-economic. After describing each of the above paradigms, the author calls for a “non-reductionist approach to the journalism-globalisation relationship”, proposing a dialectical understanding of globalisation as a tension between the global and the local.

Marc Raboy and Claudia Padovani, ‘Mapping Global Media Policy: Concepts, Frameworks, Methods’,,  June 2010.

The authors attempt to define the boundaries of “global media policy”, conceptualising it as a domain, elaborating a consistent analytical framework, and addressing methodological implications. They also provide an overview of the conceptual journey through which the project to map global media policy has evolved.

Leonard J. Theberge, U.N.E.S.C.O.’s New World Information Order: Colliding with the First Amendment Values, 67 American Bar Association Journal 714 (1981)

The paper critiques the thrust of the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) upon “responsible media” and “balanced flow of information”, as well as criticism of the Western press by third world countries and attempts at regulation, as incompatible with American conceptions of a free press.

Brendan La Rocque, “Bill Clinton, US Imperialism and Globalising Corporate Media.” 33(9) Economic and Political Weekly 455 (February 28, 1998)

Using the coverage of the Clinton-Lewinsky affair, the author highlights how despite being for-profit organisations, multinational media corporations have been able to retain their legitimacy with the public, largely by emphasising their supposed role as inveterate seekers of the truth, and as impartial reporters of important events.

Newly Paul, Foreign Correspondence in the Digital Age: An Analysis of India Ink—the New York Times’ India-Specific Blog, 12(23) Global Media Journal – American Edition 1 (2013)

This paper is a case study of India Ink, the New York Times’ first country-specific blog. This paper examines the blog’s content in order to analyze the ways in which participatory Web 2.0 tools have changed foreign coverage. Findings indicate that through interactive multimedia, crowd-sourced content, and collaboration between Indian and American reporters, India Ink is helping foreign correspondence thrive amidst drastic newsroom budget cuts.


Anita Gurumurthy, ‘When Technology, Media and Globalisation Conspire: Old Threats, New Prospects’, paper presented at the World Social Forum in Mumbai, India in January 2004

The article presents a feminist critique of globalisation, and  the role played by Information and Communication Technology (ICT) systems and structures in furthering patriarchy and neoliberalism. She suggests that there is a need to democratise the information sphere, and to appropriate and re-focus ICTs for the advancement of democracy and the empowerment of women.

Fernandes, Leela. “Nationalizing `the Global’: Media Images, Cultural Politics and the Middle Class in India.” 22(5) Media, Culture & Society 611 (September 1, 2000) doi:10.1177/016344300022005005

The article intervenes in the debate over the effects of globalization on the nation-state by exploring the ways in which meanings of the global are produced through the nationalist imagination in India. Through an analysis of this process, it calls into question the post-national thesis of the globalization paradigm.

PN Vasanti, ‘Wider Debate required for rethink on Media FDI’, Mint¸13 November 2009


Sonwalkar, Prasun. “India: Makings of Little Cultural/Media Imperialism?” International Communication Gazette 63, no. 6 (December 1, 2001): 505–519. doi:10.1177/0016549201063006003.

Foster, John Bellamy, and Ellen M. Wood, eds. Capitalism and the Information Age: The Political Economy of the Global Communication Revolution. Monthly Review Press, 1997.

Robertson, Alexa. “Connecting in Crisis ‘Old’ and ‘New’ Media and the Arab Spring.” The International Journal of Press/Politics 18, no. 3 (July 1, 2013): 325–341. doi:10.1177/1940161213484971.

Roach, Colleen. “The Movement for a New World Information and Communication Order: A Second Wave?” Media, Culture & Society 12, no. 3 (July 1, 1990): 283–307. doi:10.1177/016344390012003002.

Thomas L. McPhail, ‘Global Communication: Theories, Stakeholders, and Trends’, John Wiley & Sons, 2010-03-08, ISBN 9781444330304

Gerbner, George, Hamid Mowlana, and Kaarle Nordenstreng. The Global Media Debate: Its Rise, Fall and Renewal. ABC-CLIO, 1993, ISBN 9780893919573

Foster, John Bellamy, and Ellen M. Wood, eds. Capitalism and the Information Age: The Political Economy of the Global Communication Revolution. Monthly Review Press, 1997 ISBN 0853459894

Mansell, Robin, and Kaarle Nordenstreng. “Great Media and Communication Debates: WSIS and the MacBride Report.” Information Technologies and International Development 3, no. 4 (2006): 15–36.

Volkmer, Ingrid. The Handbook of Global Media Research. John Wiley & Sons, 2012, ISBN 9781118255308

Flew, Terry. Understanding Global Media. United Kingdom: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.

Marsden, Christopher T. Regulating the Global Information Society. Routledge, 2000.

Siochrú, Seán Ó, Bruce Girard, and Amy Mahan. Global Media Governance: A Beginner’s Guide. Rowman & Littlefield, 2002.

Hamelink, Cees J. “The Politics of World Communication.” SAGE, 1995.

Barker, Chris. Global Television: An Introduction. Oxford, UK; Malden, Mass.: Blackwell Publishers, 1997.

Herrmann, Edward, and Robert Waterman McChesney. Global Media: The New Missionaries of Global Capitalism. Continuum, 2001.

“New Media, Old News.” SAGE. Accessed December 6, 2013.

Nielsen, Greg. “Review of Television, Globalization and Cultural Identities.”, Accessed December 6, 2013.

Other Resources

Mapping Global Media Policy, particularly the section on International Institutions

The project Mapping Global Media Policy serves to monitor, categorize and analyze key issues, significant developments and recent trends in the governance of media, information and communication on a global level. It is an independent project initiated by the Global Media Policy Working Group of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR). It is hosted and supported by an academic consortium led byMedia@McGill, a research and public outreach hub based at McGill University (Canada), and including University of Padova (Italy) and the Center for Media and Communication Studies (CMCS) at Central European University (Hungary).

Stefaan Verhulst, Syllabus for ‘World Communication: Principles, Politics and Law’, Department of Culture and Communications, NYU (E58.2225 – Spring 2010)

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