Constructing local culture in a near media monopoloy
Humeniuk, Bradley Kevin
Master of Arts
SubjectRadio broadcasting (Social aspects)
Local radio news
Governmental policies that influence the creation of ‘local news’
MetadataShow full item record
The main objective of this thesis is to examine how the local radio news media in Thunder Bay construct local culture. Two paradigms are used to explain this process: instrumentalism and structuralism. Although other theories can better explain how audiences interpret messages, this study was not intended for that purpose. The goal was to determine how local culture was constructed by the media despite their organizational limitations. Since this study looks more at the internal structure of these radio news media, it is necessary to review their history and to analyse the governmental policies that influence the creation of ‘local news’. Two hundred and four newscasts were recorded and transcribed from local radio stations CBQT, CKPR, CJLB, and CJSD. Each story was classified geographically and thematically indicating trends and differences between publically and privately owned media. Many themes rank similarly between the public and privately owned media, however, there is greater duplication of stories on the privately owned radio stations, raising questions about governmental policies that attempt to maintain diversity in the news. To address these issues, there is an in-depth historical analysis: (1) to review policies concerning the stations’ commitment to local news content, and (2) to provide a context for understanding how the governing body has contributed to a monopolistic media setting in this region. This research concludes that journalists appear to construct local culture based on a predetermined set of stereotypes. The media construct local culture as a predominantly white, heterosexual population that beholds a ‘pioneering’ spirit towards the region.