According to Daniel Dayan and Elihu Katz (1992) media events can be termed as events that “In short, great news events are another genre of broadcasting, neighbor to our own, that will help set the boundaries of media events” (p.9). However, they also noted that media events should not be by definition a routine. Thus, the attack on 9/11 can be termed as media event as it is sudden, unexpected and live but a church hearing is not as it is monotonous and people expect it. However, Maurice Roche (2002) in his text Olympic and SportMega-Events as Media-Events: Reflections on the Globalisation paradigm clearly suggested that “Sport mega-events in the contemporary period… are also, by definition, media events” (p.2). Thus, according to Nick Couldry (2003) media events are “privileged moments, not because they reveal society’s underlying solidarity, but because they reveal mythical construction of the mediated centre at its most intense” (p.56).
Under such scenario globalization made this media event into global news and occasion. Mass media is for the general population and it feeds the population year round. Thus, when a media event takes place the media is responsible to deliver the news to the mass. Globalization has helped this approach by a huge margin as it enables a larger population to access the news with its worldwide networks of information delivery. An event like accident of Princess Diana reached almost every individual across the globe. It became a media event and globalization made it possible for the news media to reach the entire human population.
Under this condition, media events of one local or regional setting became unanimous under the setting of globalization. The radio and television change came following that of the press media. Along with came the terminology ‘media events’. Theorists like Dayan and Katz and Roche are introducing this term because it clearly shows the approach of the media while covering a sudden and unexpected experience and it is all live. The term is generally used for continuous coverage of an event, planned or spontaneous, by the media. It came into prominence with the use of newsreels during the 1940s. It started with audio and visual medium but soon became interactive with the advent of internet through blogging and news websites. So much so that according to Elihu Katz and Liebes (2010) No More Peace!: How Disaster, Terror and War Have Upstaged Media Events modern terrorists are instrumental in influencing transcontinental population in supporting their cause through media. This also became a part or example of media event. One interesting example can be FIFA World Cup event. It is clearly a media event as all the possible mass media, radio, TV, newspapers, new channels, internet etc., available indulge in reporting this event.
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The theoretical contributions made by the theory of Media Events are effective in this context. According to Daniel Dayan and Elihu Katz (1992), in their text Media Events: The Live Broadcasting of History, “While we shall have occasion to point out these differences, they are outweighed by the similarities…Often they are ceremonial efforts to redress conflict or to restore order or, more rarely, to institute change” (p.9). It is the spreading of information that is the most striking phenomenon. This has been made possible through computers, telex modes, satellite communications – to mention few among many others. This in turn has changed the way news is disbursed through newspapers, radio and television as well as the Internet. People from different corners of the world are coming in contact. The advantages outweigh any disadvantages.
Nick Couldry (2003) noted in this context that "media rituals are practices through which the arbitrariness of the limits around participation in the media sphere....is naturalised" (p.29). This is an approach that is used by all the successful media corporations throughout the globe. Similarly, according to Douglas Kellner (2009), media spectacle takes place when "media constructs that are out of the ordinary and outside habitual daily routine which become special media spectacles" (p.76). According to the author the Oscars and the Olympics are the best examples of media spectacles. It is also referred to "technologically mediated events" (p.76) like the Clinton sex scandal in the 1990s.
Regardless of the differences and uniqueness, all media organizations, not only in US or UK but in other parts of the world as well, have some few things in common. For instance, despite their varying structures, all media organizations largely contribute in the economy, which is regarded as the sphere of the society in which the scarce or inadequate resources are distributed in order to satisfy the needs the limitless and competing needs and wants of the people within a given society. This is particularly true during the age of globalization. Dayan (2009), in his article Beyond Media Events: Disenchantment, Derailment, Disruption, provides the example of Olympics becoming a global event with the help of media. However, according to Douglas Kellner (2009) in Media Spectacle and Media Events: Some Critical Reflections, news, social event or disaster, joyous news or sorrowful, are turned into spectacle and breaking news by the media.
The rate of information production is said to be doubling each eight years and information is pouring in four times faster than it consumption rate. The resulting global oligarchy with their corporations at the top of the ladder own and run multiple media content reaching to the masses – primarily the distribution technologies. But it cannot be denied that a global audience has made its debut nurtured by the global media – and in the long run it is this audience that will pull the strings. But for now media events are the vital lifeline of media of all kind and media spectacles and media rituals are essential elements of media that includes the most of the population throughout the world.
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