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Community Television: A Case Study from Favela Da Rocinha, Brazil

Essay by   •  April 5, 2018  •  Case Study  •  433 Words (2 Pages)  •  563 Views

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Community Television: A Case Study from Favela da Rocinha, Brazil

In recent years the media industry has undergone qn 1 significant structural changes caused by a cycle of business mergers, which resulted ultimately in the rise of giant media conglomerations. The main consequence of these changes is that viewers are increasingly facing fewer options due to a narrowing of opinions disseminated by the mass media as well as a decreasing coverage of local issues. In addition, the media world is currently witnessing an increasing centralization of content production in the United States and, to a lesser extent, European countries such as Great Britain and France. In a world geared toward globalization, there is little space for the points of view coming from countries of the so-called ‘third world’. People who live in the periphery of these media centers have often no choice but to take on a passive role, absorbing what is fed to them in a one-way, top-bottom flow of information. If media are responsible for creating a marketplace of ideas, what is to be done to avoid the homogenization of content and the suppression of so many voices? What is to be done to assure that the media, and, especially television, have a more interactive and dialogic nature? One alternative emerges in the form of Community Television. Qn 2 It springs from the many ways in which the combination of technology and communication has originated non-mass mediated forms of communication. A portable camera is now relatively accessible to any amateur who wants to produce his or her own programs while cable technology makes it possible to air these programs. The main difference between community media and mass media is that community media affects people’s lives in a more direct way. Viewers are provided with information that relates closely to the peculiarities of their surroundings and also have the significant advantage of being able to participate in the production of programs. This article clarifies some important concepts such as community, community media, empowerment and participation, and applies these concepts to a concrete experience in an impoverished district in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This case study is unique because it takes place in the Favela da Rocinha, Latin America’s largest slum, with no less than 120,000 people jammed on two hillsides. In addition, Rocinha provides an excellent setting for the following research questions that will be answered throughout this paper: Q1: To what extent does TV ROC achieve empowerment and participation in the community of Rocinha Q2: Does TV ROC reduce the social gap within Rocinha, therefore facilitating social change in the community?

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