Skip to main content

Media ownership policy in a recession: redefining the public interest

Buy Article:

$18.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)


As media enterprises steer a path through unprecedented economic upheaval, many are looking to consolidation as a means of achieving economies of scale that would, they argue, shore up their investment in journalism. There is therefore growing pressure on policy-makers to relax traditional ownership rules preventing undue concentration of media conglomerates. This poses a challenge to critical scholars traditionally opposed to such relaxation on the grounds of promoting pluralism and diversity in a democracy. This article argues that, rather than risk the rapid emasculation of original journalism, we should be thinking more creatively about how the public interest and journalistic diversity might be protected within a policy of consolidation. Drawing on recent legislative initiatives in the United Kingdom, it proposes two possible approaches: first, inserting into merger legislation detailed public interest provisions rooted in normative values of professional journalism; and second, on the basis of clear evidence that ownership structures influence content, fostering different forms of ownership that move beyond the traditional privatepublic dichotomy to exploit online and not-for-profit opportunities.

Keywords: consolidation; diversity; journalism; media ownership; plurality; public interest

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Westminster.

Publication date: December 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • Interactions aims to encourage the development of the widest possible scholarly community both in terms of geographical location and intellectual scope in the fields of media, communication and cultural studies.
  • Editorial Board
  • Information for Authors
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • ingentaconnect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
ingentaconnect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more