Document Type

Journal Article

Department/Unit

Department of Journalism

Title

Public service broadcasting, public interest and individual rights in China

Language

English

Abstract

This article argues that China's public service broadcasting (PSB) policy has been motivated more by the pragmatic ends of securing social stability and cohesion than by moral or humane concerns for the development of citizens. Actual PSB policy focused predominantly on a narrowly defined 'basic cultural right' of access to broadcast media and on social equalization between urban and rural access to broadcast networks. Other values of PSB, including high-quality programming, independence and impartiality, are still marginalized. The continuation of consensus on the authoritarian political model and the prioritization of social order and collective rights over individual political and civil rights has restricted the scope of the policy. The lack of consensus on the substance of the public interest undermines any meaningful political construction of PSB. The long-term implications of PSB policy depend on the legitimation of the discourse of individual rights and equality, and on recognition of the broadcast media's role in independently serving the public and common good and of the state's obligation to respect individuals as citizens having equal and unalienable rights. © The Author(s) 2012.

Keywords

Chinese media, Chinese media policy, Chinese politics, citizenship, human rights, media freedom, public interest, public service broadcasting

Publication Date

2012

Source Publication Title

Media, Culture and Society

Volume

34

Issue

7

Start Page

898

End Page

912

Publisher

SAGE Publications

DOI

10.1177/0163443712452700

Link to Publisher's Edition

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0163443712452700

ISSN (print)

01634437

ISSN (electronic)

14603675

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