Romano, Angela R. (2009) Asia. In Norris, Pippa (Ed.) Public Sentinel : News Media & Governance Reform. World Bank, Washington, DC, pp. 353-375.

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Reporters sans frontiéres (RSF) has repeatedly declared Asia to be the most demanding continent for journalists and their news organizations to operate in, and in some countries, even simply to survive in. The many reports issued by RSF and other global agencies regularly show Asia to be the region in which the largest number of murders of journalists occur per year, even when Asian–Arabic states and Central Asia are not included in the definition of ‘Asia’. The reports describe numerous physical, legal and economic threats as well as serious political repression and restrictions that journalists face as they attempt to function as watch-dogs, agenda-setters and gate-keepers for their societies. The statistics and examples provided within these reports, however, do not provide the full picture. Most Asian nations also host vibrant media cultures in which journalists play an important role in supporting social and democratic processes and activities. This chapter outlines the political and economic influences on Asian journalism; the impact of new technologies; the debates about philosophies such as 'development journalism', 'peace journalism' and 'Asian values'; and the influence of the so-called 'envelope culture' or practices of gift-giving and bribery that pervade journalism in some countries. To illustrate how these principles affect journalists' practice, the chapter presents a comparison of the starkly contrasting situations in India versus North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of Korea). The chapter also describes issues affecting countries as far afield as China to Kazakhstan, including a short case study of journalism during the so-called Saffron Revolution in Burma in 2007. The chapter concludes with suggestions about how training and aid for the Asian should be contextualized to take into account the specific cultural, economic and political factors that shape and limit the media’s performance, and how journalists might be best placed to negotiate around them. Such training needs to be sensitive to valid variations in perceptions of what kind of governance and journalism best serves development, without serving politically motivated rhetoric.

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ID Code: 29807
Item Type: Book Chapter
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Journalism, Asia, Democracy, Politics, New Communications Technology, Economic and Social Development, India, China, North Korea, Burma
DOI: 10.1596/978-0-8213-8200-4
ISBN: 9780821382011
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ECONOMICS (140000) > APPLIED ECONOMICS (140200) > Economic Development and Growth (140202)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLITICAL SCIENCE (160600) > Government and Politics of Asia and the Pacific (160606)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Past > Schools > Journalism, Media & Communication
Deposited On: 19 Jan 2010 22:26
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2017 06:48

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