THE IMPACT OF NEWS COMMERCIALIZATION ON MANAGEMENT OF BROADCAST MEDIA IN NIGERIA (CASE STUDY OF NIGERIA TELEVISION AUTHORITY (NTA) ENUGU.


ABSTRACT

This research project examines the implications of news commercialization on management of broadcast Media in Nigeria with emphasis on NTA Enugu.

Thus, the issue at stake on this topic is to find out what impact does news commercialization has on the Mass audiences even when media claims to be the watch dog of the society.  Therefore, media should be ready to accept the dangers posed by news commercialization and such dangers include media questions on objectivity, professionalism, and fairness now being undermined by limited access to news airtime.

The educationist, sociologist, politicians, the Businessmen and even the religions minded are all interested in this debate.

In this research I decided to use survey research method ascertain the validity of various hypothesis formulated.

The result of this research will useful to students of Mass Communication Media experts, government and the society at large.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1         BACKGROUND TO STUDY

1.2         STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS

1.3         OBJECTIVES OF STUDY

1.4         SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY

1.5         RESEARCH QUESTIONS

1.6         RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

1.7         CONCEPTUAL AND OPERATIONAL DEFINITION

1.8         OPERATIONAL DEFINITION

1.9         LIMITATIONS OF STUDY

CHAPTER TWO

LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1         SOURCES OF LITERATURE

2.2         ORIGIN OF COMMERCIALIZATION

2.3         SUMMARY OF LITERATURE REVIEW

CHAPTER THREE

3.1         RESEARCH METHOD

3.2         RESEARCH DESIGN

3.3         RESEARCH SAMPLE

3.4         MEASURING INSTRUMENT

3.5         DATA COLLECTION

3.6         METHOD OF DATA ANALYSIS

3.7         EXPECTED RESULT

CHAPTER FOUR

DATA ANALYSIS AND RESULTS

4.1         DATA ANALYSIS

4.2         RESULT FINDING

4.3         DISCUSSION

CHAPTER FIVE

SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY

5.1         SUMMARY

5.2         RECOMMENDATION FOR FURTHER STUDIES

5.3         CONCLUSION

APPENDIX (APPLICATION)

QUESTIONNAIRE AND INTERVIEW GUIDE

BIBLIOGRAPHY

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1         BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

The advert of broad casting in Nigeria was Ushered in, in 1932 with the empire  services transmitted from the British Broadcasting Cor-operation, (BBC) in Daventry, England, to entertain and inform the Colonial masters.

Aso Stella – Joan Ebo (1994: 43 – 44).   Further stated that Nigeria Stations began to experiment with rediffusion sets. Then the Nigeria posts and telegraphs department was authorized to work out plans for the distribution of programmes to subscribers in Lagos, Kona and Ibadan.

It was in the phase of this that brought about the establishment of broadcast media outfit both Radio and Television in Nigeria which Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu was one of them.

Even since the inception of broadcast media in the country, Ownership pattern shows that investment into the establishment of the industry was the exclusive preserve of the Federal and State Governments in Nigeria.  This is the reason why NTA is owned both at Federal Level and State Level.

That is to say that prior to Decree 38 of 1992, no private ownership was allowed in Nigeria.

But before then, the down turn in the economy of this great nation brought with it certain changes.  Some of these changes were mostly stringent, that various government were always decrying, lack of money to prosecute their programmes.

Electronic media organizations which NTA Enugu is one of them is not exempted from- the area government was finding difficult to spend the limited resources available to it.  However, government saw media as organization that can fund them if given the enabling resources.

Then, the government of General Ibrahim Babangida through the amended Decree N0 25 of 1988 empowered the media organization to engage in commercial broadcasting.  This allows them to do partial commercial broadcasting through which they would be augmenting the meager subvention that would subsequently be coming from government.

This due to the drastically reduction of subvention from the Federal Government to the media organization, the broadcast media organization now embark on various ways of generating now additional funds to enable them run their stations.

As planning and execution continued in most of the broadcast stations, they discovered that before they can ever generate what is near to the amount that can be enough to supplement their meager subvention, they would have to market almost all their programmes.  It is on this understanding that news programmes were not left out, rather, they were also commercialized.

Therefore, with news commercialization the media organizations started to charge money to go on coverage and writing of some news items.  The media management now see news as a commodity, much like advertising that can be traded for profit.

But, alas, how can this commercialization trend be ranged against  societal information needs?  If the broadcast media air only paid news, what will this mean to media professionalism and much need social surveillance?

The foregoing, thus, forms the basis of this study.

STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM

Broadcast media managers are well aware of their essential roles in society.  They have been tutu red according to the best strategies to Manage Social Information.  They are conversant with societal information needs.  These forms their guidelines in Managing media resources to produce media sole offering –information.

Initially the production of news package in Nigeria Television Authority (NTA)  Enugu, was based on the principle of items that are newsworthy.  Also it was guided by what is ethical in journalism profession and according to the house style of the organization.

The producers of new packages would then go out to cover an assignment, and when they return they would write news stories objectively.  They were always careful not to include in their news stories materials that were based on wrong news principles.  Also they avoided writing or converting some stories to be newsworthy.  As the guidance perceived the news stories put out by Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu with implicit confidence, the channel enjoyed high credibility rating from them.

However, some serious questions readily come to mind at this juncture.  With the introduction of news commercialization as a measure of improving the financial standing of the organization, have news producers remained objective?

Does the channel still enjoy the confidence of the audience?  Does it still maintain the audience level it had before news commercialization?

How has this more affected the ethics of the profession, and the newsworthiness of some of the materials that are included in the news packages.  What is the current credibility rating of the station.  Does it generate substantial amount from commercial news stories to justify its maintenance as a veritable source of income to it.  Has this move not limited the amount of news information that are disseminated to the consumers through news packages.

Mews commercialization has affected the principle of news packages as a humanitarian service.  This has led the sponsors of news stories having some measures of control over he station.  This they do through the understanding that their news stories take precedence over unpaid ones.

As stated by Raph Efiong (1999:70) the implication of commercializing news in the Nigeria media has effect on the media credibility and consequences on the citizens participatory rights in the communication media.

OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY:

It is pertinent to find out in this study to substantiate that news commercialization is unethical.  It has caused out news producers to be packaging some materials that are not news worthy as news stories.  Also it has effected adversely the way and manner in which out reporters go in search of news stories.  Their manner of searching for news has been constrained by the fact that some stories would have to be paid for.  So any news story which has commercial value and which is not paid for is usually dropped.        They are also affected by the fact that news stories, which have paid for, would attract more prominence and detail than stories not paid for.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY:

The aim of this study is to bring to the notice of the management the impact of their decision to engage in news commercialization.

They will realize that their news packages are not enjoying the confidence of their audience.  Also they will have to know that they have not been disseminating adequate amount of information their audience members are expecting through their news packages.  The management will later understand that this condition has adversely affected their credibility rating.

The journalists will realize the importance of maintaining their professional standard in mews coverage and writing of news stories.

While on the other hand, the audience will start to receive the type of news stories they have been expecting from Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu.             However, this will only become possible if the management rescinds its policy of news commercialization. RESEARCH QUESTIONS

Does news commercialization affect negatively the level of confidence the audience have in Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu

News packages.

Does news commercialization affect negatively the standard of writing news stories in Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), Enugu.             What is the attitude of news producers to the idea of news commercialization.

Is Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu enjoying low level of audience viewer ship as a result of the news commercialization.

Does the preparation of news commercials lead the news producers into engaging in unethical processes.

RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

HO         The policy of commercialization of news in Nigeria Television

Authority (NTA) Enugu, as a means of enhancing finances, has not

In any way adversely affected the objectivity of news producers in

News writing.

H1          News commercialization as a means of enhancing the financial

Standing of Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu, has

Adversely affected the objectivity of news producers in news writing.

Ho        News commercialization in NTA Enugu has not contributed to the

Low credibility rating they enjoy.

H1          The credibility rating of NTA Enugu has reached an all time low as

A result of the news commercialization.

Ho         Commercial news stores in NTA Enugu, do not usually displace

humanitarian service news stories

H1          Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Enugu commercial news stories

Usually displace news stories that are humanitarian service.

Ho          Finances that come into the channel via news commercialization

justify the continued maintenance of news commercialization policy

there.

H1          Incomes that accrue to the station through news commercials are not

substantial enough to justify the maintenance of commercialization

of news.

DEFINITION OF TERMS CONCEPTUAL AND OPERATIONAL DEFINTION

It is very important that the meaning of the topic at state is registers in the mind of the readers that is why I decided to simplify for better comprehension/clarity.

NEWS:    News or fresh information is reports of what has recently

happened.

COMMERCIALIZATION:   Financed by charges made for

commercialization advertisement in

programmes.

IMPACT:   A powerful effect that something has on a situation or person.

MANAGEMENT:   The action or manner of managing or control of things or person.