According to Harvey (1999 ), the study of broadcasting regulation “has started to creep into the edges of the media studies curriculum.” This wind of change should be welcomed, because it will aid the apprehension of the major forces that shape the communication environment. It has been noted that “literature on media regulation were predominantly produced by legal scholars following Eric Barendt’s comparative study on law” (Harvey 1999,). However, globalization in the face of specialization necessitated probes in sections of the society by scholars in the different areas. That is why media scholars cannot do without looking at issues as they concern media practices. An appraisal of the statutes of regulation of the Nigerian broadcast industry is pertinent at this period when the whole world is talking about digitization of broadcasting.
- Background Of The Study
The history of broadcasting began with early radio transmissions which only carried the dots and dashes of wireless telegraphy. The history of radio broadcasting (experimentally around 1905-1906, commercially around 1920-21) starts with audio (sound) broadcasting services which are broadcast through the air as radio waves from a transmitter to an antenna and, thus, to a receiving device. Stations can be linked in radio networks to broadcast common programming, either in syndication or simulcast or both.
All along the ownership, control and operation of broadcasting in Nigeria were preserved exclusively for the various governments – Federal, Regional, and State (Media Rights Agenda, MRA, 2001). In 1992, the Deregulation of Broadcasting Decree No.38 was promulgated by the administration of General Ibrahim Babangida. The expression of that presidential ipse dixit which established the National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, also created a new pattern of ownership and control as well as injected competition in the broadcast industry. Corroborating, NBC (2009,) submits that “as a result of the revolution in the Nigeria broadcast industry, the number of broadcasting stations in Nigeria has, at the last count, risen to 394, from less than 30 before deregulation”.
1.2 Statement of the problem
Broadcasting is an integral part of in any society because it is the foresight of the masses and at the same time the bed rock of any nation since it can help build the image of the society. Though Nigeria as a country has its own policies which are aimed at regulating the free flow of information. A times, this regulation could have negative effect due to biasness on the part of the regulator and for such, the free flow of information can be influence. Therefore due to this sort of problem, this research will investigate the influence of broadcast regulations on free flow of information and conduct of broadcast professionals in Nigeria.
1.3Significance Of The Study
It is important to realize that for information to have any substantial impact, influence and effect on the society and to make people perform, accept, or reject certain innovations, the medium through which such information comes must be regulated;and at the same time allowpractioners to practice freely. Due to the fact that broadcasting regulation might have influence on the conduct of professional broadcasters as to the free flow of information, it is significant to access the impact regulation polices would have on the flow of information from broadcasters and on the conducts of broadcasting professionals in Nigeria.
1.4 Research Question
In order to adequately study the topic under investigation the following questions were posed
- What are some of the policies made by government which is meant to regulate the practice of your profession?
- How does this policies affect the free flow of your broadcast?
- How do you personally feel about the regulating polices?
- Does it affect your conduct during broadcasting?
- has there being any benefit in regulating broadcasting?
1.5objective/Purposeof the study
This study hinges on the influence of broadcasting regulations on free flow of information and conduct of broadcasting professional in Nigeria. In view of this, the following objective are outlined.
- This work will determine the type of influence exerted on broadcasting in Nigeria by broadcasting regulations.
- It has been observed that different countries follow different approaches to regulations. Therefore, this work will ascertain the approaches to broadcasting regulation in Nigeria.
- In the light of the above goals, this piece will also appraise the application of the broadcasting code to broadcasting operation in the country.
1.6 Scope of the study/Delimitation
Broadcasting professional might be affected either positive or negatively due to broadcasting polices. In view of this, the scope of this study will only cover NTAAwka television station and the staff of the establishment.
The researcher has decided to limit this study to NTA televisionAwka station as a case study since the study hinge around the influence of broadcast regulations on free flow of information and conduct of broadcasting professional in Nigeria.
1.7 Conceptual Definition Of Terms
For the purpose of clarity, some key concept words used in the content of this research work are listed below and properly defined.
- Regulation: A rule or directive made and maintained by an Authority .
- Policy :A course or principle of action made an organization.
- Professional: skillful.
- Broadcasting:To Transmit an information
- Innovations: New ideas.
- Promulgated : To promote or make widely known.
- Ipse dixit: dogmatic and unproven statement.
Simulcast: a simultaneous transmission of a programme both on radio