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International Television

Michael Curtin


During the latter half of the twentieth century, most discussions about international television tended to focus on national media systems and relations of exchange among those systems. Since the 1990s, however, television has increasingly been studied as a global phenomenon. Although national systems still figure prominently, research and policy debates now explore the ways in which television participates in broader processes of globalization (→  Globalization of the Media ; Globalization Theories ). Originally, →  Television , like →  Radio before it, emerged as a quintessentially national medium. In almost every country, television was introduced in hopes of fostering national unity, social development, public enlightenment, and cultural preservation. Using their power to limit the number of broadcasters, governments carefully controlled access to the airwaves, either by creating public service broadcast systems or by licensing commercial systems that pledged to serve the national interest (→  Radio Broadcasting, Regulation of ; Telecommunications: Law and Policy ; Television Broadcasting, Regulation of ). With the exception of the western hemisphere, most nations around the world opted for public service television during early years of the medium (→  Public Service Broadcasting: Law and Policy ). In countries like France, the government organized centralized networks that ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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