Extract from ‘Media and Politics in Latin America’ – Chapter 6
In the previous chapter, I examined the role that television played in Northern Europe and the UK, exploring major television and audience theories, starting from the Frankfurt School perspectives and the pessimistic stances regarding television, to the active audience and uses and gratification research tradition. The latter has gained ground amid the contestation of the complexities involved in the audiences‟ experience worldwide of reading media texts. In regards to UK broadcasting, I investigated the debates on what is understood by „quality‟ in both commercial and public broadcasting, and related this to the different ideological understandings of the diverse functions of the media in their relationship to democratization. The UFRJ results for instance underlined the audiences‟ acknowledgement of the importance and relevance of PSBs, although there is still a lot of uncertainty in Brazil on how precisely the public media can contribute to media pluralism and democratization.