Master of Mass Communication (MMC)
The study analyzed how independent and state media's news programs differ in the way they framed the Georgian Revolution of Roses. The paper analyzed what sources, frames and key words journalists used to describe the protest in order to investigate if the coverage was objective or biased in any particular direction. Study provides evidence that by framing protests in a different way, politicians and journalists give different meanings to the same issues and suggest what is at issue. Each party of the political elite tried to promote their own political viewpoints. By preferring sources from the ruling party and their supporters and repeating frames and key words suggested by the ruling party, state television supported the ruling party. By quoting frequently reformers and their supporters and framing the event in a way offered by the reformers, the independent media supported the viewpoints of the reformers. This participatory position of the independent station is supported by developmental theory, which says media in countries in transition have to assist to the process of democracy. (Baran & Davis, 2003). In the case of Georgia, the opposition was considered eager to fulfill democratic reforms and so the independent media supported their political views. However, the free press theory suggests that bias is against all professional norms of journalism, regardless the intentions of media to have bias for the "right" side of an issue. (Leigh, 1974). A free press has to offer balanced and objective reports of the event or issue. Otherwise, it will not be credible and lose the public trust, which is most valuable to a free press. (Leigh, 1974). The coverage of the Revolution of Roses in the independent station was not beneficial to the development of a free press. It becomes even more obvious how important an unbiased press is now that the former reformers have become the government. The state TV is still maintaining the ruling party's political viewpoints and the independent television became part of the government's public relations machine by conveying mostly positive news about the policymakers and policies.
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Danelia, Nino, "Covering the Revolution of Roses (differences and similarities between Georgia and independent television companies)" (2005). LSU Master's Theses. 2357.