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A third important point to make about the undemocratic elitism of traditional media is that they are given to the conventional definitions of news which emphasise very important persons, controversy, conflict, unusualness, and the like (Galtung & Ruge 1969). These definitions are restrictive. By implication, if something happens to ordinary people, as long as there is no very important person to quote, it is not newsworthy. These value judgements are, of course, bequeathed to most African journalists through the educational system which is largely driven by Western notions of what constitutes good journalism (cf.

10. The editorial team keeps a close watch on legal matters too: defamatory comments, for example, will be deleted. 11. Unacceptable comments will be deleted without notification. 12. Thought Leader is mainly an English site, though we don’t mind the odd word or sentence in any other language. Just ensure that the average English-speaking reader won’t feel completely lost. 13. No comments that advertise companies, businesses, services or such will be accepted. za to find out more. 14. za. We will deal with such issues as soon as possible.

Because of its overuse, it can mean everything or nothing. It can be invoked to cover a multitude of political, social and economic ‘sins’. Thirdly, laying it bare could possibly help to reclaim its analytic and empirical potential. It is a very useful concept and we need to be clear about what it could mean for the practice of our citizen journalism and therefore politics. In other words, we need to challenge our attitude towards the conceptual possibilities and the practical implications it carries for our political sphere in the ‘information’ age.

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