Imperatives of Internet and Social Media on Broadcast Journalism in Nigeria
The development of radio and later television brought a new dimension to news and events coverage in Nigeria. In 1993 the monopoly of government was broken to allow private participation. This gave the broadcast audience multiple choices of media. The advanced technology in the broadcast media and the development of internet and social media networks further exposed the society to alternative mediums of information. The pervasiveness of these websites in our everyday lives is today changing the face of broadcasting globally and in particular the Nigerian broadcast industry. This paper therefore examines the implication of Internet and social media on broadcast journalism in Nigeria.
For a society to exist and function there must be a functioning media. This fact has already been established in the different earliest societies that make up the entity Nigeria. The various traditional communication channels like the Town crier, the aroko and the drum beat emphasize the role of information and communication between and among the people. The Media are therefore shaping people’s everyday lives, politics and cultural activities to a greater extent than ever before. We live in a society that depends on the media for information and communication that guides our daily activities like work, entertainment, health care, education, personal relationships, travelling and anything else that we have to do. Extolling the role of the mass media in the society Dominick (2002:32) writes that: May be the best way to appreciate the role the mass communication plays in our society would be to imagine what it would be like if, all of a sudden, the whole system never existed. How would we find out what was on sale at the local supermarket? How would we know Britney Spear’s current love interest? How could we find out what was happening in the Middle East? How could we avoid the traffic jams during rush hour? How would we spend our evenings? Obviously, the mass media are a pervasive part of our live. A very important area in today’s broadcasting world over is the technology and equipment for the transmission of media messages. Modern technology has transformed the shape and dimension of broadcasting. Broadcasting media technology has undergone rapid changes and continued until the early 20th century. Modern technologies are today enhancing and facilitating the communication process activities, as well as help the generation and dissemination of information more efficiently to highly dispersed audience in the world. Olorede and Oyewole (2013) claim that : The catalyst for the transformation of media newsrooms is modern technology. These technologies have further enhanced media credibility, reliability and even affordability and accessibility, as events can be reported as simultaneously as they unfold, with little or no interference and audience’s access at a relatively affordable cost. These technologies have also refurbished the obsolete face of media newsrooms; the new sophisticated computers have replaced the old, time-consuming and outdated typewriters, and so on.