The Rising Domination of Media Capitals

Source: Idaho State University

Source: Idaho State University

New patterns of media flow are emerging throughout the world and are impacting audiences. The media capitals are ‘switching points’, places where things come together and generate a new culture of mass media. The complexity of spatial flows and the global media environment are expanding. The three major media capitals are Hollywood, Hong Kong and Chicago. There are many factors that shape and influence these media capitals such as cultural forms (film, radio, music) and social forms (migration, geopolitics, capitalism) (Curtin, 2003).

“Media capitals, then, are sites of mediation, locations where complex forces and flows interact. They are neither bounded nor self-contained entities… media capital is a relational concept, not simply an acknowledgement of dominance” (Curtin 2003, p. 205). Therefore, media capitals have the potential to influence global entertainment and audiences.

In 2009-2010 the racist attacks on Indian students in Melbourne tarnished the global image of a multi-cultural Australia. The rise of India as a new media capital inflated the political and economic power of India, especially Indian TV media. Indian networks were seen as Orientalist, taking advantage of Australia’s failure to make Indian students feel safe. Various mediums of Indian media exaggerated the story of the attacks and failed to address law and order issues.

According to Sukhmani Khorana (2012) the 70 CNN-style TV channels that pump out news 24 hours a day played up the Bollywood-esque drama of the story. Indian television networks were seen as valuing quantity over quality. As a result, the Indian media had a negative effect on Australia’s international student market. Consequently, Australia-India political, economic and cultural relations were severed.

The above video of the ABC news story on International Indian students, emphasises the importance of Australia to maintain a good image of its student exchange program. It is a necessity for Australia to continue to attract international students as they contribute $5 billion to the national economy. Therefore, new media capitals have the power to influence and impact Australia.

Curtin, M 2003, ‘Media Capital: Towards the Study of Spatial Flows’, International Journal of Cultural Studies, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 202-228.

Khorana, S 2012, ‘Orientalising the new media capitals: The Age on Indian TV’s Hysteria’ Media International Australia, vol. 143, pp.39-49.

By Bianca Tasevski Posted in BCM111

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