Media Ownership Concentration, and Democracy
Ana Paulina Morales Apodaca 145645
Gabriela Matías Valencia 146852
Pily Galindo Papaqui 146370
Andrea Zavala Núñez 147525
Diana Michelle Chayo Ferreyro 146444
Andrés Muñoz Alarcón 144256
 Media ownership
 Media industries
 Publich sphere: Internet
 Political economy
 Monopolize the ownership and distribution of cultural events
 Global capitalism
 Media haves and media-have-nots
Media ownership
 The progressively more concentrated nature of mass media by a small number of
transnational multimedia conglomerates.
 The fact that these transnational conglomerates, control or have substantial interest in both
media and non-media companies.
 The continued shrinkage of the mass media’s publich sphere role arising from greater
concentration and conglomeration
 The consequences for news, current affairs and investigative journalism, given the macro
shift towards entretainment, populism and “infataiment”
 The redifinition of audiences as consumers rather than citizens.
 The unequal acces to both media content and media technologies.
 The political economic power of individual media moguls
Community/ not-for-profit-media
 Local radio, e-zines, blogs or newsletter. Organized on a non-profit by a
specific interest groups such as a women’s collective or an ethnic
minority group.
Public or state-owned media
 Controls newspaper, tv and radio- Ideological role to play.
 Controls the issuing of broadcast licenses, it determines how much air
time should be given over the publich broadcasting and it regulates
how much air time can be expanded on advertising or sponsorhip
Private owned media organization
 Controlled by companies or individuals, families, shareholders or
Conglomeration, concentration and content.
 Contraction of public sphere
 The rise of “infontaiment”
 The decline of much media work
 The homogenizing tendencies
 “The search for profit is seen as the key arbiter of what is produced in
the media, first in the economic sense of achieving surplus reveneu
and secondly in the ideological sense of the values and beliefs which
support capitalism”
Concentration and conglomerism
 Conglomeration: Operates at the local, regional, national and
transnational levels.
 Allocative control: Determines the overall direction of the media.
 Operational control: Decision on content and budget of specific program.
Vertical and horizontal integration
 Vertical: Companies involved in production and distribution of a
specific land of media.
 Horizontal: “Refers to the process by which one company buys
different kinds of media, concentrating ownership across different
types of media rather than “up and down” through one industry.
 Throw- “The co-ordination of parts of a company so that the whole
actually turns out to be worth more than the sum of its parts acting
alone, without helping one another”
The political economic perspective
 McQuail defines it as a “critical
approach that focuses on the
relation between the economic
structure and dynamics of media
industries and the ideological
content of media”.
 Media content selected
 Ownership structure changes: Implications
 Implications of concentration and
 Importance of the examination of the media
 Why is this theory important?
Two key tasks of the perspective:
 1. Examine the relationship between
structures of ownership and cultural
 2. Access to the growing number of media
producers is being very privatized. The access
of media technologies is not equal.
Habermas and public sphere.
 As we are involved in a public sphere, it
is important to question which public
sphere it is and whose interests it has.
According to Jurgen Habermas there are 3
types of public sphere in society:
 Private sphere
 Sphere of public authority
 Burgoise public sphere
The internet as a public sphere
 Discussions created online
 Weaknesses
“Rich Media, Poor Democracy"
Dos paradojas masivas
 Es una época de avances deslumbrantes en
comunicación e información tecnológica
 Cada vez se encuentra más despolitizada la
sociedad, las nociones tradicionales de los asuntos
cívicos y políticos ha disminuido.
 Medios comerciales gozan de privilegios
 Los medios de comunicación juegan un
papel central en la
prestación de la base institucional para tener una ciudadanía
informada y participativa.
 Los medios de comunicación se han convertido en una fuerza
antidemocrática significativa
grados en todo el mundo.
comunicación corporativos
convertido la mas pobre
en los EE.UU. y en diferentes
Los gigantes de los medios de
más ricos y poderosos
perspectiva de la democracia
 Los medios de comunicación no son la única causa o
la principal de la decadencia de la democracia, pero
son una parte del problema, y ​estrechamente vinculado
a muchos de los otros factores.
 sistema de medios de comunicación se ha convertido
en un puñado de manos corporativas y esta
concentración acentúa las tendencias principales de un
lucro impulsada por los medios de publicidad apoyada
 Una reforma de los medios debe dar un explosión de los
medios corporativos y la implosión correspondiente de la
vida pública
 Paradoja - medios ricos pobres democracia.
 La paradoja democracia mediática,
tiene dos componentes. Por un lado,
la naturaleza del sistema de medios
de comunicación es lo comercial de
las empresas tiene consecuencias
nefastas para nuestra política y la
cultura en general. Por otra parte las
mismas cuestiones de quién controla
comunicación y para qué usos
político corresponde
 Neoliberalismo es un factor principal que explica el auge de los
medios corporativos
 Se postula que las sociedades funcionan mejor cuando en los
negocios cuando hay tan poca posibilidad de interferencia del
gobierno en ellos como es posible.
 La democracia liberal es una forma de gobierno que consiste en
una democracia representativa donde la capacidad de los
representantes para la toma de decisiones políticas se encuentra
sujeta al Estado de derecho y normalmente moderada por
una Constitución que la regula en la protección de
los derechos, libertades individuales y colectivas
The Global Media
Purpose: To contribute to an understanding of the economic and political
dynamics of growth and the effects of the globalization of the media,
while pointing up alternative and arguably more democratic media
structures and policies
Media operations abroad are not new
Role of the media
The media provides a link to the larger society and at least indirect
connections to other human beings, and in varying degrees a sense of
connectedness and solidarity (Herman, E. & McChesney R. , 1997)
Public Sphere: All the places and forums where issues of importance to
a political community are discussed and debated, and where
information is presented that is essential to citizen participation in
community life.
IMPORTANCE: A democratic society depends on an informed populace
making political choices
Threats to the Public Sphere
Government control and
Private systems of control:
broadcasting through ownership,
regulation, and partial funding of
public broadcasting services poses
serious problems of government
intrusion and damage of the
public sphere.
Public broadcasters are under
direct government control and
propaganda agencies of the
controlling party.
The media/advertisers
complex prefers
entertainment over
cultivation of the public
Private systems of media control pose
a threat to the public sphere for 2
1. They rest on ownership control
and therefore will tend to
represent a narrow class
2. Privately owned media depend
on advertising revenue and
must therefore compete for
advertiser attention and serve
advertiser interests to prosper.
Media Globalization Effetcs
The central features
of the media
1. Larger crossborder flows of
media outputs
2. The growth of
media TNCs and
the tendency
centralization of
media control
3. The spread and
intensification of
Positive effects
The global media´s competitive pressure on, state controlled broadcasting systems and energized into
extending and deeping their services.
There is a flow toward the cultural centers, and horizontal flows within regions as well, that may open
new vistas and enhance understanding of different cultures within dominant and subordinate states.
Carrying across borders some of the fundamental values of the West: individualism, skepticism of
authority and the rights of women and minorities.
Negative effects
The commercial model has its own internal logic and, being privately owned and relying on advertiser
support, tends to erode the public sphere and to create a “culture of entertainment” that is
incompatible with a democratic order.
Media outputs are commodified and are designed to serve market ends, not citizenship needs
The New Public Sphere: Global civil society,
communication networks and global governance.
Media have become the major component of the public sphere in the
industrial society.
Inseparable from: institutional construction:
Civil Society and the State
Cultural/informational exchange of ideas feeds the debate which influences the
decisions of the state.
Process depending on cultural materials
 International arena shaped by relationships between states and global non-
state actors.
Globalization and the nation-state
 Not everyone is globalized, networks connect and
disconnect at the same time. They connect
everything that is valuable.
 Critical issues are shaped by globally interdependent
 Global civil society seeks a redefinition of the global
Political crises:
 1.- Crisis of efficiency.
 2.- Crisis of legitimacy.
 3.- Crisis of identity.
 4.- Crisis of equity.
The global civil society
 Is a generic label-gathers contradictory and
competitive forms of organization and action.
 Local Civil Society to face social problems
 Rise of nongovernmental organizations (NGO´s)
 These organizations function and work through
the media
Social Movements
 Aim to control the process of globalization
 Building networks of action and organization to induce
 Zapatistas
Movement of Public Opinion
 Turbulences of information in a diversified media system
 Spontaneous, autonomous networks of communication.
 Iraq, 2003
Global governance and the network state
 Nation-states inability to confront and manage the processes of globalization
 System transformation by 3 mechanisms:
 1) Nation-states: networks of states (sovereignty sharing).
 2) The built of a network of international institutions and supranational
organizations to deal with global issues (general or specialized purposes).
 3) States decentralization of power and resources- trying to increase
legitimacy or intercept forms of cultural or political commitment through the
devolution of power to local governments and to NGO´s, that extend the
Network State
 Shared sovereignty, responsibility, flexibility of
procedures of governance.
 Greater diversity in the relationship between
governments and citizens in terms of time and space.
 Coordination problem: organizational, technical and
 Confront and ideological and geopolitical problems.
 Governments take it as an opportunity to maximize
their own interests instead of governing in union as
political institutions.
The New Public Sphere
 Emerges from the preexisting and previous
nation-states, without dissolving them into a
global government.
 Constituted around the media system
 Global and local at the same time
 Through the media the non-state actors can
influence the minds of the people to induce
social change, apart from the institutionalized
interests in the political system
 Herman, E., & McChesney, R. (1997). Introduction. In The global media:
The new missionaries of corporate capitalism. London: Cassell

*Rich Media, Poor Democracy" - CommunicationAndGlobalization