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THE IMPLICATION OF GOVERNMENTAL INFLUENCE ON MEDIA REPORTING (A CASE STUDY OF CHANNEL TELEVISION)

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THE IMPLICATION OF GOVERNMENTAL INFLUENCE ON MEDIA REPORTING (A CASE STUDY OF CHANNEL TELEVISION)

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

Around the world, many media organizations are not truly independent. These are just a few examples—in a very long list—of countries where political parties and corporations work in tandem to subtly or boldly pressure media to produce favorable coverage. Example include the rise of media outlets in Turkey and Hungary that have the support of government and the recent, relentless persecution of journalists who don’t support such. The term for this is known as media capture in reporting.

Capture is different from the old-school forms of control with censors marking up copy in red ink or government agencies issuing directives as to what should be covered. It’s a form of soft pressure that is ubiquitous and increasing in many parts of the world. Alina M. (2006), professor of democracy studies at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, defines media capture as a situation in which the news media are controlled “either directly by governments or by vested interests networked with politics.” The definition provides a useful framework for understanding the continuing rise of right wing populism and how governments maintain their hold on the public. Government and corporate control of the press is certainly not new but has gone in a new direction.

The Nigerian media has a long history. The media and media practitioners have suffered deprivation in the hands of both military and civilian regimes. Television as a media tool has served  as a  vehicle for delivering news, information, entertainment, and distant events into a virtual social network, allowing people from various communities to witness media content that has an effect in real time or through time-shifted programming (O'Shaughnessy and Stadler, 1999). Sensitive information such  as crises and conflict cases within the Nigeria have been covered with the help of television channels and other types of media. One of the prevalent cases that have been reported by television channel in Nigeria  is the recurrent IPOB cases in the SouthEast. This agitations by the Indegenous People of Biafra has lately cause what seeming look like a secessionist tendency thus has drawn National Government attention. However the television channels in the bid of reporting current issues in the society are expected to stick to professional practices  of media journalism as the content they cover is sensitive to the the public audience.  It therefore requires that television reporters and field journalists, gather these information from the right sources and ensure that accurate detail is given in regards to cases as they happen without fear or favour of the government of the day. However the opposite is seen today where there is undue interference of the political elites and governemental influence on media reporting. The effect of this is an infringement on  freedom of press. Thus it is upon this premise that this research set to examine the implication of Governmental influence on media reporting using Channels Television as a case study.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

On  daily  basis,  Nigerians  are  constantly exposed  to  information,  ideas,  news,  advertisements, messages, and ideologies from different media sources in  the  cause  of  their  daily  activities.  Olayiwola  (2019)  explains  that  the  media provides news  and sets the  agenda for political,  social and  cultural  discourse.  It is  important  to  note  at  this point that the sourcing of news and  information in  the Nigerian media has its peculiarities.  These peculiarities render it incorrect to argue that issues canvassed in the Nigerian  media  and  discussed  in  the  Nigerian  public sphere are the agenda of the media. Much of the local news  and/or  information disseminated  in the Nigerian media originate  from the ruling class  who are referred to  in the  Nigerian  media  parlance  as  “news  sources”.  This class of individuals includes politicians, business executives, captains of industry, top civil servants, and other  influential  members  of  the  ruling  elite  whose views and opinions dominate the daily news and public information in the country. However anytime the media release information that is not favorable to this ruling elite, the feel threatened and make subtle move on attacking the media channel involved. Consequently, the commercialization  of  the  media  and  news  content, media  control  by  the  ruling  elite,  and  political affiliations have  become strong  determining factors  of media operation,  which consequently result in politics having strong influence on the media in the country.  Therefore it is against this backdrop that this study is set to examine the implication of Governmental influence on media reporting using Channels Television as a case study.

1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

The focus of this study is to examine the implication of Governmental influence on media reporting using Channels Television as a case study. Specifically it will examine the role of the television media on broadcasting. It will examine if the ruling class exhibit undue interference on today’s media. It will examine if the undue influence of government has a significant effect on the ingenuity of the information reported by the media. It will examine if governmental influence is a clear infringement of freedom of press.

1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This study in general will contribute to existing literature on the role of Television in crisis management and reporting. Moreso it will increase the awareness of television presenters and media outlet on the need to cultivate positive attitude while reporting crises cases in order not to create panic  in the society and at length they should ensure that information dished out to public audience are genuine since they know that those details affect public opinion and beneficial to policy makers.It will heighten the awareness of government on the need to come up with credible and implementable policies to curb the undue interference and censoring of the media information as this is detrimental to the freedom of press. Finally it will serve as reference material and give room for further studies on this field.

1.5 SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The scope of this study is to examine the implication of Governmental influence on media reporting. Specifically it will examine the role of the television media on broadcasting. It will examine if the ruling class exhibit undue interference on today’s media. It will examine if the undue influence of government has a significant effect on the ingenuity of the information reported by the media. It will examine if governmental influence is a clear infringement of freedom of press. This study is delimited to Channel Television, Lagos.

1.6 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

H0: There is no significant effect of Governmental Influence on Media Reporting

H0: Government Influence on Media does not affect the genuineness of information released by television channels

1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

The following factors poses to be a limitation during the course of this research

Financial constraint– Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint– The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS

Influence: Influence is the power to make other people agree with your opinions or do what you want. This refers to the outcome of an attempt to change someone's behavior or attitude.

Government Influence - Government influence is the pursuit of self-interest by the the ruling class to protect or further either individual or organizational goals.

Media: Media are the communication outlets or tools used to store and deliver information or data.The term refers to components of the mass media communications.

Report: A report is a document that presents information in an organized format for a specific audience and purpose.

Reporting: Reporting is the presenting of news in newspapers, on radio, and on television

Television: an electronic system of transmitting transient images of fixed or moving objects together with sound over a wire or through space by apparatus that converts light and sound into electrical waves and reconverts them into visible light rays and audible sound.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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