NOVJANFEB
31
201020112012
2 captures
19 Nov 2010 - 31 Jan 2011
About this capture
BBC World Service - Why media matters
We live in an ever more complex global society, on a planet where more than 2 billion people try to survive on less than $2 a day. Many people in developing countries are confronted with massive, desperately difficult challenges: hunger, HIV and AIDS, population growth, climate change, war and the daily struggle of poverty.
It is not clear to most people, including most people working for development agencies, why we should be concerned about media and communication in this context.
To the extent that the media is considered important, it is its ability to draw public attention - especially in rich countries - to the plight of people living in poverty that is considered significant.
Sometimes the media is also considered important because it can provide a more rounded and positive insight into the realities of life in developing countries and can counter stereotypes.
More than a source of information on poverty
We argue that media matters more than as a source of information on poverty. It matters too because it is a critical part of strategies designed to address poverty.
There is one very simple reason for this, and several less simple reasons.
The simple reason is that humans are uniquely successful as a species because they are uniquely able to communicate with each other. This capacity underpins all development in all of history.
The media, and increasingly new technologies, is increasingly how humans communicate with each other.
How well we communicate with each other has a good deal to do with how successful we're likely to be in confronting the massive problems we face.
Making informed choices
Media enables people to access information on issues that shape their lives, without which they cannot make choices.
Truth can be distorted as well as illuminated, malpractice hidden as well as revealed.
The character of a country's media tends to determine the character of a country's democracy and society. It underpins how people learn, understand and shape change.
Media matters because it underpins how societies respond to the problems they face. This makes media not only relevant to the most urgent problems of poverty and marginalisation - it makes it critical to solutions designed to address them.
We argue that media matters more than as a source of information on poverty. It matters too because it is a critical part of strategies designed to address poverty.
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