Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Response to Analysis Question 2: Addressing the Concerns of Media Ownership

Global governing bodies and the increased participation of civil society are crucial to concerns of media ownership in this current historical moment. Although the global financial crisis of 2007 to today is defined by the market dominance of transnational corporations (TNCs) and nation states working to advance their interests, the regulation of monopolies and subsequent increase in multidirectional flows of media could encourage a more “free free market” system if commissioned by an international regulatory body with the representation of the public sphere.

As many global monopolies have gone bankrupt, reorganized and become property of multiple countries, global governance of media is necessary to guarantee consumers the best products, prices, access to technology and freedom of use. This unique economic environment lends itself to a form of pure, never before seen global governance with the representation of global civil society. International state and non-state actors should manage media regulations in industry and society and reflect the values of their nation-states. Siochru and Girard theorize that while members would remain sovereign, the implementation of international relation principles would allow for greater transparency among participants and may help protect from the development of neoliberal democracies.

If I currently represented the public sphere in an assembly concerning global governance, I would promote increased multidirectional flows of media. In order to globally pluralize media offerings, competition against TNC monopolies should be encouraged through the regulation of technology and program prices on an international scale. Rai and Cottle describe the success of this approach when discussing the pluralization of media in the non-Western world due to cheaply priced locally and internationally syndicated programming. In modern society, global citizens should not pay exorbitant prices for either media produced locally or non-locally as disparities in price, often a result of “oligopological” control, limit global access to media and have lead to Western media dominance.

In contemporary globalized society, an international approach to media governance is necessary just as today’s network society, says Castelles, calls for the inclusion of civil society in addressing the concerns of conglomerated media ownership. With these advances, market dominance by TNCs and affiliated nation states may dissolve at increased low-cost competition and international plurality.

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