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Publication: Land Forces Academy Review
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Language: English
PMID: 113225
ISSN: 15826384
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Over the last two decades, with the acceleration of globalization, the fourth power in the state has been stripped of its potential and has gradually ceased to function as a counter power. This reality is shockingly apparent when we look closely at the realities of globalization Coming up a new type of capitalism not only economical but also industrial and financial based on speculation We are witnessing a clash between market and state, public and private sector, individual and society, personal and collective self-interest and solidarity.

The real power is now in the hands of a few economic groups appear to wield more power in world politics than most governments. They are the new masters of the world who meet annually in Davos at the World Economic Forum lay the groundwork for policy decisions by the globalizing trinity of International Monetary Fund, World Bank and World Trade Organization.

In this geo-economic framework there was a decisive transformation of the media, hitting the center of this industry. Mass communications (radio, newspapers, television, and internet) is realigned to cieate media groups with global vocation Giant companies like Newseorp, Viacom, AOL Time Warner, General Electric, Microsoft, Bertelsmann, UnitedGlobalCom, Disney, Telefonica, RTL Group and France Telecom have realized that the possibilities for expansion were increased in the new technology revolution [I]. Digital Revolution shattered the divisions that separated the three traditional forms of communication (sound, text and images) and allowed the creation and growth of the internet. It has now become the fourth form of communication, a means of selfexpression, access to information and entertainment.

Therefore, the media structures started a new age of the group restructuration by bringing together in one frame work the classic press - newspapers, reviews, magazines, radio, television, but all the activities from the mass culture, communication and information Initially, these three elements were clearly differentiated: mass culture with its commercial logic, accent on the popular programs, having certain commercial purposes; communications, as well as the publicity, marketing and propaganda; news and information repiesented by the news agencies, radio and television news, written press, non stop news channels. In time, these three elements have integrated inside of one element where there becomes harder to differentiate between the elements of mass culture, communications and news.

Marshall McLuhan [2] spoke about the idea of global village of humanity as a form of society we headed to through the modern types of communication, specific of electronic era. Modern societies are undergoing a revolution under the effect of electronic media extending their power over the entire planet.

Human society has undergone some changes, globalization of media essence having a global impact on theoretical approaches; communication is a part of action and reflections just as money is part of economy [3]; emphasizing this idea, we consider that mass-communication in the process of globalization is like financial exchanges in market.

Media globalization is not a recent phenomenon [4], it was started in 1850's when domestic telegraph system had greatly extended their reach and become linked to a worldwide network of cable communication. The early stages of globalization were synonymous with imperialism, because of the communication utilized by the western nations, in order to aid the expansion of their empires.

Media globalization is defined as the extension phenomenon of a multinational media investments company, resulting from a global oligarchy of companies, which own a variety of media products and distribution technologies as: television, radio, film, music, telecommunication, cable, newspapers, reviews, magazines, publishing houses, internet suppliers and other forms of services attached to the digital media.

Positive effects of globalization on mass communication

In the modern world, mass -media supplies a cultural menu for millions of individuals and shape their cultural experience; the actual age witnessing the modeling of mass culture and media culture, because of the cultural impact of media, as a complex system, with certain ways of social communication, certain languages, new cultural types. Therefore, in globalization process, mass-media is not only a vehicle of culture, but also an agent of its socialization and a producer of a new culture.

Expansion and multiplication of the social effects of special events occurring in an area of the world, to world-wide, are social effects which we consider positive, the main protagonist being media, the most powerful and wider multiplier effects producer radiant factor. Media globalization helped the information production and distribution; it is known that the production rate of information doubles every eight years. In addition, information is produced at a rate that is four times faster than the consumption of information [5]. Media globalization with increasing abundance of media text production has different effects, which are investigated by communication researchers; is a broad topic that includes television, radio, film, music, internet and other forms of digital media.

UNESCO published in 1978 "The Declaration of Fundamental Principles Concerning the Contribution of Mass Media"; article Vu refers to the mass media effectively contribution to the strengthening of peace and international understanding, to the promotion of human rights, and to the establishment of a more just and equitable international economic order [6].

The beneficial effects of media in the process of building a virtual reality may includes: protective feeling, increasing human solidarity and social force, rebuilding the social netwoiks and communities or public space, feelings of great intensity, the strengthening of collective memory, regular updating of the memories of society, acceptance of change, aesthetic education, consumer awaieness in decision- making, etc. On the information highways we aie, for the first time in history, faced with an economy that focuses on a source not only exhausted, but more that that, it increases [7]. In postindustrial society, information is a power factor - knowledge is power.

Mass-media globalization helped the information production and distribution, especially that the information is produced in a certain rhythm which is fourth time bigger than the information is "consumed"; includes television, radio, movies, music, internet and digital media. All the instruments of mediate communication have become more and more significant in our daily life.

Critics on effects of globalization on mass communication

There is a variety of effects noticed by researchers concerning media globalization George Geibner [8] affirmed that one of the most successful television programs are not made only for the national viewers, but mainly for its international distribution; for example, in Romanian television programs as "Oprah" or "Dr. Oz", but also the scientifically channels, cartoons channels, fashion channels are specific effect of globalization process, in a continuous increase.

Robert McChensey [9] considers that eight multinational corporations dominate the global mass-media, also the Unites States media: General Electric, AT&T/ Liberty Media, Disney, Time Warner, Sony, News Corporation, Viacom and Seagram, plus Bertelsmann, the Germany-based conglomerate [10]. The multinational corporations become moie and more integrated inside the national media, so that, through new companies, are able to distribute their own products. The fieemarket policies have created a properly medium for foreign investments in massmedia; the World Trade Organization is threatening local culture by encouraging foreign investments in local media, mainly in developing nations, as a form of cultural protectionism This researcher consider that the effect of spreading the mass-media multinational corporations lead to cultural imperialism, a loss of local cultural identity. As a conclusion, the author thinks that "the global commercial-media system is radical in that it will respect no tradition or custom, on balance, if it stands in the way of profits" [11]. In his opinion this is a negative effect of media globalization. Another author who critics the effects of globalization on mass -media is Benjamin Compaine [12]; in his article "Global Media" [13] disagreed with the view that a large conpanie are taking over the worlds media, comparing international media mergers with rearranging the furniture, because these societies are sold and resold in a repetitive ways.

Marketing, as distortion of the natural logic of cultural aesthetics in industrial production has resulted in destruction of authentic culture, according to Roger Silverstone [14]. By symbols, symbolic productions become real, that is pure goods. The researcher believes that the handling is achieved through integration into a unified system of all productions, from music to movies and television and their structural homogeneity, so that all productions become equivalent and equal, resulting in a phenomenon of socio-cultural homogsiization The author notes that the globalization of production, distribution and consumption of media has the paradoxical effect of social fragmentation, cultural and identity [15].

Ignacio Ramonet [16] makes a very inteie sting parallel between the alimentaiy industry and information industry: a long period of time, the food was a good in limited quantities (still in many parts of the world). But when the rural areas began to product in abundance, especially in West Europe and in North America, because of the agricultuie technologies revolution, we started to realise that many of our alimentary products are contaminated, poisoned by pesticides, which brought with them diseases, infections, cancers and other health problems. In author opinion, the same situation is regarded in globalization process concerning media activity: the news once was a good in limited quantity (and still is in countries run by dictatorships). But, in democratic countries, the news and the information overflow us from all the directions; the right stifle us. The Greek philosopher Empedocle [17] said that the world in composed of four elements: air, water, earth and fire; in our globalized world, information has become so abundant that can be considered a fifth element.

Information and globalization, mixed, influence the way news are leceived by public. The researchers against globalization consider news as poisoning, polluting our brains, manipulating in order to inoculate us, as media consumers, subconscious ideas that are not our owa For this reason, the same researchers consider that is absolutely necessaiy to establish ecology of news, to sort real news from lies, to decontaminate the news we receive. Just as we can buy organic food less contaminated, we need biological news [18]. The same authors insist that the news consumers should demand global owner media groups to show respect for the truth, because the news is legitimated only when are engaged in a search for truth

One of the oldest media theories against globalization is the cultural imperialism This theory is studied by John Tomlinson [19] who sees the cultural imperialism as a modernity critique as an aigument against the dominative trends of global development [20]. Frankfurt School, as an important methodology in mass communication study, is well known for its Marxist traditions, for harsh critique of capitalism and liberal democracy [21] inside the media globalization study.

Media globalization and corporate expansion

Media globalization means the globalization of the communicationinformation companies; these are concerned with growth, which means they must develop relations with other powers in the state; therefore can not claim anymoie that arc acting as the fourth power in the state, with a civic purpose and commitment to denounce abuses on human rights. They are no more interested in correcting the malfunctions of democracy and creating a better political system They are no morc intercsted to be the fourth power in the state and much less to act as a countervailing power; even when media is a fourth state power, this power is just an adjunct of the political and economic powers and operates as an additional power - media power, in order to influence people, not always in a positive way.

Is it possible this scenario? Mostly it is agreed by the researchers against the globalization process, but, as any other theory, it has its own sense of truth We consider that this point of view is mostly analyzed from the perspective of the commercial function of media, an important function. But also there are impetuous necessaiy to be considered the first two important functions of mass -communication: informing and shaping public opinion.

In the recent decades, there are the following trends in the globalization process of media culture: chaotic proliferation of mediated communication [22], resulting in over information and misinformation, falsification of reality - manipulators of information, global human cultural hybridization and perversion of the messianic hero in saving object [23]; the transformation ideology of the media structure led into a machine to look and into a captive of media culture [24]; uniformity/ trivialization, individual alienation by consumerism, by cheap, damages cosmopolitanism, culturally alienating. Media globalization gets big during the 1980s when a prevailing policy of deregulation of media in many developing nations along with openness to private investment occurred.

Therefore, the international corporations provide programs not for the national consume, but their goals aie to be international distributed. Robert McChesney is a media historian and political economist. In a well-known article [26] he criticized multinational corporations in a number of ways. First, that the global media market is dominated by eight multinational corpo rations which also dominate U.S. media; we mentioned it before. Second, multinational corporations are becoming increasingly horizontally integrated, meaning that these companies both create content and own publishing companies or broadcasting networks, and are able to distribute their own product. Third, international deiegulation and free-market policies have cieated a climate that has been conducive to foreign investment in media. Fourth, that the World Trade Organization is threatening local culture by encouraging foreign investment in local media. McChesney has observed a trend of cultural protectionism form developing nations: in the summer of 1998 culture ministers from twenty nations, including Brazil, Mexico, Sweden, Italy and Ivory Coast, met in Ottawa to discuss how they could build some ground rules' to protect their cultural fare from the Hollywood expansion

In our opinion, the informational globalization assumes the global play of the power; the globalization standards', including "communication support" - as an element of the "global village" and also aspects regarding the political liberalism [27], do not contradict the state sovereignty, independence and territoriality, but they affect economic, financial; therefore, in this context, the media is a part of the globalization process; more than that, we consider that is an important actor with gieat influence, sometimes this influence being able to change decision making. The followers and critics of media globalization agree that therc is a fierce competition between companies dealing with media products, regarding the regional companies and multinational corporations.


In the context of globalization process, media companies have achieved significant economic and ideological power so that they are now major players, actors. The communication includes the information technology, electronics and telecommunication, the heavy industry of out time; because ofthat, the companies are constantly increasing their scale by buying nonstop companies. They also pressuring the governments to remove laws hat were designed to limit concentration and prevent the creation of monopolies and duopolies.

From our point of view, the contradictory opinions regarding the globalization process effects on media start from the media first three important function: to inform, to shape public opinion and the commercial function. We believe that there are two categories of opinions: the first one is the category of researchers who consider globalization as an efficient process for media development, thanks of the benefits of the information flow which permit audience to establish opinions and value judgments. Therefore the first two function of media determinated this current of opinion, based on the public needs to be informed, to have answers to questions: who, what, where, when, who (regarding the first function) and why (regarding the second function). The third function of media determines another opinion current, of the researchers against the media globalization, because of the commercial aspect, with valences in economic, financial domains.

In other words, when money comes into a scenario, all the coordinates are changing. But, in our opinion, the impact of media is not longer as the one of the fourth power, because the financial aspects make it being subjugated in front of the first three powers, which assure the development and expansion

Mass-media and economic liberalization are now intimately linked. Therefore we believe it is important to analyze how people around the world could impose a more major media ethics and a commitment to truth and respect for ethic codes in order for journalists to operate according to their own consciences rather than the media organizations, media companies and editors interest.

In international communication development of the last two decades, the most significant moment can be considered the increasing concentration of mass/media ownership within and across national borders. The world wide trend toward deregulation and privation of the massmedia sector has facilitated this process. There are two important implications for the way news influence our life, because of the concentration of mass-media ownership: first, news commercialization in a certain frame of aesthetic, technical and professional standardization at the global level; second, the increasing of soft media content, as a result of alliances between the international "media moguls" and political forces. These two influences are parts of the globalization process.


1. Ignacio Ramo net, "Set the Media Free", Le Monde diplomatique, 10 (October 2003) (accessed on 12nd of August, 2011).

2. Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980) was a Canadian philosopher, iegarded as one of the leading theorists and practitioners of the media industry, known for the expressions "the medium is the message" and "global village".

3. Pierre Zemor, Comuni care a publica, (Iasi: Institutul European, 2003), 26.

4. Dwayne Winseck and Robert Pike, Communication and Empire: Media, Markets, and Globalization, 1860-1930, (Durnham, N.C: Duke University Press, 2007), 429.

5. Joseph, Dominick, The dynamics of mass communication: Media in the digital age. 7th Ed., (Boston McGraw Hill, 2002), 513.

6.^en/ev.phpURL_ID=13 176&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC& URL_ SECTION=201.html (accessed on 21nd of September, 2011).

7. Cuilenburg, J. J. Van; Schölten, O.; Noomen, G. W., Stiinta comunicarli, (Bucharest: Humanitas, 2004), 59.

8. George Gerbner (1919-2005), born in Budapest was a professor at Temple University, Villanova University and University of Pennsylvania. He was the founder of cultivation theory and the Cultural Environment Movements his most famous and influential contribution to the field, to track changes in television programming and study how television influences American's view of society. The project's database gathered over 3,000 television programs and 35,000 characters acting as an advocacy group promoting grcater diversity in communication media.

9. Robert W. McChesney is Research Professor in the Institute of Communications Research and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign

10. Robert McChesney The New Global Media, hi E. P. Buey, Living in the information age: A new media reader (Belmont: Wads worth Thomson Learning, 2005), 93.

11. Ibidem, 95.

12. Benjamin M. Compaine is professor at Northeastern University, Boston and a senior consultant fot the Innovation International Media Consulting Group "Who Owns the Media?"

13. Bejamin Compaine "A Few Big Companies Are Taking over the World's Media", in Review Foreign Policy, no. 1, Nov. 2002, articles/globahnedia.html, (accessed on23nd of August, 2011).

14. Roger Silverston (1945-2006) was an English sociologist, professor of Media and Communication at he London School of Economics; is consideied a leading pioneer of British media and communication studies, author or editor of 12 books. He played a prominent role in the intellectual development of a new academic subject in Britain, just as he did in its institutional development. Beginning as a sociologist at LSE, and subsequently at Bedford College, London, he switched academic tracks in 1976 when he moved to Brunei University. There, he played a key role in developing the study of communications before becoming the first professor of media studies at Sussex University in 1991. In a number of distinguished publications, Silverstone went onto explore the changing nature of communications technology and the varied uses to which it is put. At the heart of his best work was a constant concern with the way in which the media represent the world, connect people and ideas within it and forge ties of imagination, trust, and memory. This, and related themes, were summarised in an original synthesis, Why Study the Media? (1999), an enormously successful book that was translated intolO languages. It led directly to his last volume, Media and Morality, due to be published this autumn, which examines the moral issues faced by the media.

15. Roger Silverstone, Why Study the Media, (London: Sage Publications, 1999), 96.

16. Ignacio Ramo net, Set the Media Free, in Le Monde diplomatique, nr. 10, oct. 2003, (accessed on 14th of August, 2011).

17. Enpedocle (ca 490-430 BC) was a Grcek pre-Socratic philosopher, best known for being the originator of the cosmogenic theory of the four classical elements. Empedocle was one of the most inquiring and researcher spirits of that age, his thinking influencing on Democritus, Plato, Aristotle, Lucretius, but also drawing over centuries philosopher s as Holderin, Nietzsche or Freud.

18. Ignacio Ra mo net, State-sponsored lies, in Le Monde diplomatique, July 2003, English edition, 2003/07/ (accesed on 14th of August, 2011).

19. John Tomlinson is Professor of Cultural Sociology; Director of the Institute for Cultural Analysis, Nottingham; Head of Research: Cultural, Communications and Media Studies. John Tomlinson is an authority on the cultural aspects of the globalization process and has lectured at many distinguished universities across Europe, the United States and East Asia as well as at venues such as The Bauhaus Institute, Dessau; Tate Britain; The Council of Europe; the Festival Filosofia, Modena and Demos, Hungary. He has worked as a consultant on issies of globalization, culture and politics to several international public sector institutions including UNESCO, The Council of Europe, The Commonwealth Secretariat, and the Geneva Centre for Security Policy and NATO Defence College.

20. John Tomlinson, Globalization and Culture, (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1999), 229.

21. Ibidem, 212.

22. Adrian Dinu Rachieru, Globalizare si cultura media, (Iasi: Institutul European, 2003), 6.

23. Ibidem

24. Dascalu, Doina, Mesianismul pub li citar, in Anale - Seria Jurnalisticà, (Vol. XII, Univers itatea "Tibiscus", Edi tura Augusta, 2007), 83-85.

25. Robert McChesney, The Politicai Economy of Media: Enduring Issues, Emerging Dilemma, (New Yoik: Monthly Review Press, 2008).

27. Adrian Dinu Rachieru, Globalizare si cultura media, (Ia§i, Institutul European, 2003), 6.


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Author affiliation:


"Lucian Blaga" University from Sibiu

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