media CAPITALS (see what I did there)

What do you know about other countries? for most of us our information is limited to what we see on television or what we read in articles. This gives us an understanding of the outside world that is little more than a mediated snapshot, However thanks to globalization and the rise of Media Capitals, the line between cultural borders is decreasing exponentially. Traditionally when It came to global influence there was no competing with the media monopoly that was old school Hollywood. Back in the 1930’s Hollywood produced around 80% of the world’s films. During that time and all the way up until the modern era of convergence, America had cultural dominance over the rest of the world. They had the largest film and television industry as well as the greatest scope of  cutural influence. Nowadays things are a little bit different, as Michale Curtin (the godfather of Media Capitals) suggests… “Although  Hollywood exports continue to dominate global entrainment markets, debates about transnational flows of television have moved beyond the media imperialism thesis to focus on deliberations about globalization”.

Prior studies that emphasized a one-way flow of US programming to the periphery of the world system are now being reassessed in light of the increasing volume and velocity of multi-directional media flows that emanate from particular cities, such as Bombay, Cairo, and Hong Kong.

Hollywood is now only third when it comes to sheer volume in film production. The largest film industry in the world today is India’s Bollywood, followed closely by Nigeria’s Nollywood. On top of this cities like Hong Kong are also producing up to forty thousands hours worth of television programming a year. Although these industries may not have as great a scope as Hollywood in terms of international recognition, convergent communication technologies such as the internet are rapidly blurring regional boundaries. We are beginning to see a media landscape where information is no longer linear but in fact multidimensional and because of this “political, economic and cultural phenomena overlap and collide, disrupting our prior confidence in holistic approaches to culture and society” (Curtin 2004).


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