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THE ROLE OF GATEKEEPING IN NEWS PRODUCTION AND DISSEMINATION

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[icon type=”icon-pencil”]: THE ROLE OF GATEKEEPING IN NEWS PRODUCTION AND DISSEMINATION
[icon type=”icon-book”]: Chapter 1 – 5
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[icon type=”icon-doc-line”]: Ms Word format

This study,THE ROLE OF GATEKEEPING IN NEWS PRODUCTION AND DISSEMINATION contains concise information that will serve as a framework or guide for your project work. The project study is well-researched for academic purposes and are usually provided in complete chapters with adequate References.

Keywords:THE ROLE OF GATEKEEPING IN NEWS PRODUCTION AND DISSEMINATION

RESEARCH BODY

CHAPTER ONE

1.0    INTRODUCTION

1.1    BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

Before information can be disseminated to the public, it undergoes strict examination by certain people. These people are known as gate keepers. They limit, expand and recognize or interpret the information the audience receives. This information can be in form of news, film, graphics art and photographs e.t.c.

However, there are lots of scholarly definition of what gatekeeping and who gatekeepers are. The term “gate-keeper” was first used by the Austrian Psychologist, Kurt Lewin. He defines gate-keeper as the individual or groups of persons whose role is to monitor the traveling of news in the communication channel.

Expanding Lewin’s definition, Bittner (1989:12) defines gate-keeper as any person or formally organized group directly involved in relaying and transferring information from one individual to another through a Mass-medium.

Akindele and Lamidi (2001:52) says “A gate-keeper is anybody who has the propensity to start Mass communication industry”, Lewin’s definition of gate-keeper is centered on the people who govern the   movement of news within the communication channel.

Bittner in his definition asserts that gate-keeper is any person or formally organized group who has the job of transferring message from one person to another. Analyzing this definition further, we will see that gate-keeper is not graphic communication, censorship etc.

In his word, Bittner asserts that a gate-keeper can be a film producer who cuts scene form a prime time show because it is perceived as being too sexually explicit, a director who determine what segment of film to use in a documentary, a newspaper executives who determines the topic for editorial, or any other individual in the processing or control of messages disseminated through “Mass-media”.

The definition of Lamidi and Akindele emphasized the influence which gatekeeper can have on the final product in the Mass communication industry.

Black and whitney (1983:15) cited in Akindele, Lamidi (2001:52) says gatekeepers “determine what the public read the event they bypass are events that never happened as far as the public is concerned, society exposure to the days reality and fantasy is in the gate-keepers hands”.

Gate-keeper, in my own word is any person or organized group of person who control the flow of information in the mass-communication channel this include reporters, proof-readers, editors and host of others. ‘     This work is concerned with the news disseminated by the press to the public at large. The Nigerian tribune was established and rolled out on Wednesday November 1949. The first issue of the Nigerian Tribune began with a political education project with the serialization of the autobiography of pundit Jawaharlal Nehru, the Indian leader whose lifestyle and approach to political was an inspiration to many Nigerian nationalist.

The study will allow people to understand the full role of the Nigerian press and gate keepers in our society. The roles to receive, destroy, treats letters to editors and interpret information shall be stated. However, the primary reason for establishing the Nigerian Tribune is politics and also one interesting things they do is that it has survived strong water. The Nigerian press is a concept which predates states and society.

It is run from the evangelical church journalism in Calabar, alongside of Reverend Henry Townsends Iwe Iroyin Yoruba which had been n the year 1945. The illiteracy and esthetical behavior and ignorance on the part of gate keeper in our media organization have culminated into a state of chaos, ethic and religion clash.

This problem can only be tackled when the gate keepers know their function and follow ethic and law relation to their profession.

1.1.2 HISTORY OF NIGERIAN TRIBUNE

The Nigerian Tribune is an English language newspaper published in Ibadan in Nigeria. It was established in 1949 by Obafemi Awolowo and is the oldest surviving private Nigerian newspaper.

In the colonial era, the newspaper served as the mouthpiece for Awolowo’s populist welfare programs. It also played an important role in defending the interests of the Yoruba people in a period when different ethnic groups were struggling for ascendancy. From independence in 1960 until the 1990s most publications were government-owned, but private papers such as the Nigerian Tribune, The Punch, Vanguard and the Guardian continued to expose public and private scandals despite government attempts at suppression. General Ibrahim Babangida once said that of all the Nigerian newspapers he would only read and take seriously the Nigerian Tribune’s editorial column.

1.1.3 LETTERS TO EDITOR/FEEDBACK

This is a form of feedback techniques adopted by the Newspaper industries to know and get reactions from the general public base on what they have published. It serve the same purpose with what audience of radio and television do when they phone-in during programmes.

The term feedback’ was coined by Nobert Wiener 1948 from the science of cybernetics in physics, to refer to the method by which output energy is returned to a system as input It simply means now information from Inc system is feedback to it and how the system  to it. Akinfeleye (2000)

1.2    STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The major problems facing the Nigerian press arise from ignorance and negligence on the part of the gatekeepers. It is even universally believed that anybody who possesses the talent irrespective of his education can practice journalism, we can see people from different fields such as English Language, History, Economic, Accountancy e.t.c. to name just a few.

Although, eloquent at speech and skillful at grammar without journalism, he or she may not practice according to the ethics of the profession. Many Nigerian press men are half baked because they undergo meager education.

Another worthy problem facing the Nigerian press men is their negligence to their duties. Most of the news aired or published nowadays is not well edited, some news which can bring hatred and tribal crisis in the country are still being published. Therefore the problem of this study is to investigate or know the role of the press as gate keepers in our society using the Nigerian Tribune as a case study.

1.3    OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

  • To examine whether Nigerian Tribune commit mistakes in its          publication.
  • To x-ray why Nigerian Tribune commit mistakes in its publication.
  • To know the extent which newspaper industries recorgnise the role of      reporter, proofreaders and editors as gatekeepers.
  • To understand some of the challenges facing newspapers’ gatekeepers      in performing effectively and efficently in newspaper industry?
  • To know the extent in which gakekeepers make Nigerian Tribune    newspaper contents error free.
  • To know how often Nigerian Tribune publishs Letter to Editor.
  • To highlight whether lack of press freedom negatively affected the   investigative and gate-keeping spirit of journalists.
  • To examine whether Nigerian Tribune journalists have sound formal        education in the field of journalism?
  • To know the basic role gate-keepers in Newspaper publication?

1.4           RESEARCH QUESTIONS

  • Does newspaper commit mistakes in their publication?
  • Why do newspapers commit mistakes in their publication?
  • To what extent do newspaper industries recorgnise the role of  reporter, proofreaders and editors as gatekeepers?
  • What are the challenges facing newspapers’ gatekeepers in

performing effectively and efficently in Newspaper industry?

  • To what extent is Nigerian Tribune gakekeepers make newspaper    contents error free?
  • How often does Nigerian Tribune publish Letter to Editor?
  • Has lack of press freedom negatively affected the investigative and   gate-keeping spirit of journalists?
  • Do Nigerian Tribune journalists have sound formal education in the  field of journalism?
  • To what extent do Nigerian Tribunne really performing gatekeeping roles in its publication?
  • What are the roles of the press as the gate-keeper in the publication?
  • To what extent does ownership interest influence the gatekeepers    news judgement?
  • Do advertisers interest affect the gatekeepers decision making?

1.5           SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This research work has been limited in scope through the topic itself  “The Role of Gatekeeping in News Production and Dissemination” using Nigerian Tribune Letters to the Editor as a case study. The discussion in this project will view the importance of press men as gatekeepers in our immediate society. Nigerian Tribune was chosen since it is not possible to study all newspapers in Nigeria within the limited time available.

1.6    LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

This research is limited to a print media i.e Nigerian Tribune, one of the Nigerian foremost newspapers. My effort to generalize the study is limited because it takes huge amount of money to carry out the research by going from one place to another in dissemination of information about the topic given to me, transportation problem and the unwillingness on the part of people interviewed the slanting of fact by the interviewers who reluctantly give out information for the fear of not being misinterpreted. Therefore, this is applicable to the print media houses and journalists.

1.7    SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This study will go a long way in helping researcher, student of journalism, students, lecturers and people studying mass communication and the large public to follow the way or make use of this research topic to know the way they will follow to their respective research.

This study has shown what it takes to become a gate keeper, informing the public and editors that the gate keepers are the fourth estate of the realm if they perform their duties, roles and right from coping, to the dissemination of the information to the public and editors

1.8    DEFINITION OF TERMS

  • Gate-keepers: These are people that protect wrong information from getting to the public.
  • Nigerian Press: people that bring news from an event or visitation to the public and audience.
  • Roles: This means part a function of a character in a topic or a play.
  • Editors: An editor is a person who edits the unwanted part of a news or report.
  • Nigerian Tribune: it is the one of the best newspaper which large of people gets information like sport, music and also about politics.
  • Letters to Editor: This is a form of feedback techniques adopted by the Newspaper industries to know and get reactions from the general public base on what they have published. It serve the same purpose with what audience of radio and television do when they phone-in during programmes.

1.9    RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

Okoye (1996:51) opines that: survey is a method which is geared towards the study of people, their attitudinal frame of mind, and their systems, opines motivational range and manifestation. Survey method which was used is adopted to counter-check the already existing ideas and knowledge known and seen which concerns this study.

The research tool will be structured in two sections or part, part A will contain basic data of the respondents while the part B questions will focus of research questions.

Keywords: THE ROLE OF GATEKEEPING IN NEWS PRODUCTION AND DISSEMINATION


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