THE RECENT DECLINE IN PRESS FREEDOM IN SOUTH AFRICA

Lianne van Leeuwen

Abstract


Since the implementation of the 2008 Protection of the Information Bill and the 2010 proposed Media Appeals Tribunal, it is often argued that these two developments may affect the country’s press freedom problematically. The research question of this paper is: how has press freedom in South Africa developed since 1994? Firstly, two discourse analyses of presidential public speeches that refer to press freedom were carried out in order to gain an understanding of presidential discourse. Secondly, two content analyses of the Mail / Guardian were conducted in which the articles that refer to press freedom were analysed to examine the way in which they cover this issue. The time periods for the content analyses match those of the discourse analyses so the results of the comparisons can be compared safely. The content analyses show that journalistic rhetoric has changed while the political rhetoric seems to have remained the same. As an alternative to the Media Appeals Tribunal, the present writer suggests the appointment of an independent regulatory body which will be able to solve issues between the two opposing discourses in an easy and fair manner, and the media will be able to maintain its function as the ‘fourth estate’ while political figures can object to defamation.

Full Text:

PDF


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5789/6-1-83

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.



ISSN 2073-2740 (online)

Powered by OJS and hosted by Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service since 2011.


Disclaimer:

This journal is hosted by the SU LIS on request of the journal owner/editor. The SU LIS takes no responsibility for the content published within this journal, and disclaim all liability arising out of the use of or inability to use the information contained herein. We assume no responsibility, and shall not be liable for any breaches of agreement with other publishers/hosts.

SUNJournals Help