As mobile providers take over spectrum from broadcasters, the age of ‘free-to-air’ transmission could be coming to an end.
What does it take to make a national broadcaster? A national service should be freely available in all homes for adults and children without the barriers of encryption or subscription. The United Nations’ educational and cultural body, UNESCO, suggested in 2005 that public service broadcasting might have ‘an important role to play in providing access and participation in public life’; it would serve ‘the interests of people as citizens rather than as consumers’; it would assist in ‘strengthening civil society’ and it would be ‘a unique service providing universal access to information and knowledge’ (2005).
Summer appears gone; prepare to mark the first day of fall in the traditional fashion, with a new set of announcements from Apple. On Wednesday, Apple will dazzles with new iPhones, a new Apple TV, iOS 9, and a few more reveals about Apple News. The event has gotten many in the media business moving, prepping their technology and meeting frequently, both with Apple and internally, to get things sorted out.
I’m in Accra for roughly 60 hours, long enough to remember why I love this country so very much, but not long enough to see all the people I want to see, to visit the markets and streets that I miss, and most challenging, to eat all the marvelous food this country has to offer. (After landing last night, I went straight to Osu night market for a plate of omo tuo at Asanka Local. Closed, so it was charcoal chicken and fried rice at Papaye, not a bad second choice.)
Bloomberg laid off dozens of journalists yesterday and is reorganizing itself to meet the paradoxical imperatives of doing news today.
Editor’s note: The new issue of our sister publication Nieman Reports is out and ready for you to read. I write a column for the print edition of the magazine; here’s my depressing one from the new issue.
This has not been a good year for local news.
Do you have an idea to advance journalism? Can Harvard help?
If yes and yes, we’d like to hear from you. We’re opening applications for ourKnight Visiting Nieman Fellowships, a chance to join us here at Harvard for up to 12 weeks of work on a special project. Nieman has nearly eight decades of experience with yearlong fellowships for journalists, but added these shorter stays to reflect the changing needs of the industry and the evolving cast of journalism influencers.
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