World Communication Systems Blogs- Week 12

Being one of the most diverse regions in the world, Oceania has one of the most interesting media systems to discuss. Oceania is composed of four major sub-regions, each with their own unique history and cultures. These sub-regions are Micronesia, Melanesia, Australasia, and Polynesia. These sub-regions combined have over 1,000 spoken languages. This is just an example of the extremity of diversity in the region, and it is reflected in their media systems. However, that doesn’t even begin to cover the impact of external influence, including, but not limited to, European colonization.

Each sub-region of Oceania, and even the individual countries within them, have unique media systems. While some are extremely restricted, such as Tonga, others are beacons of press freedom, such as Fiji. With notable exceptions of Australia and New Zealand, newspapers in the region tend to have very low impact. This is due to high illiteracy rates throughout most of Oceania However, with regards to other mediums, usage is varied, due to the heterogeneity of the region.

The major media hub of Oceania is considered by many to be New Zealand. It has the most immigration from other Oceanic countries, other than Australia. It has the most developed and popular media systems of the region, and is a very popular location in other aspects, such as tourism and governmental systems.

Evidently, the sheer diversity of Oceania leads to inconsistency of media systems in the region. While some are very free, others are extremely restricted. Medium usage also varies greatly between sub-regions and individual nations. External influences, as well as European colonization, still has major impacts on media of the region today. Therefore, it is hard to pin down a single media system standard that defines Oceania.

Sources:

  1. http://education.nationalgeographic.com/encyclopedia/oceania-physical-geography/
  2. http://press.anu.edu.au/ssgm/global_gov/mobile_devices/ch06s05.html
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