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Role of Global Media Use on Adolescent Development in South Africa
Unformatted Document Text:  Global Media Use in South Africa _ Slayer, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and Survivor were prominent among the programs being offered on South African television at the time of the study, and these programs were on the regular programming lineup for one of the following television services in 2000: three national SABC (South African Broadcasting Corporation) channels, e-TV (20% of which is owned by the Warner Bros. Studios), or subscription-based M-Net channels. Therefore, many of the foreign programs—mostly from the U. S.—were identified in the survey by South African teenagers as favorites. In addition, most global products are originated from the United States and other developed nations, even if the association with a specific country might have weakened over time for some products and may weaken in the future for others. McDonald’s and Coca Cola, for instance, would be the first names that come to mind whenever one thinks of global products. Therefore, globalization and Westernization are often understood as one and the same, with the United States being “the global police officer of the world” (Steele, 2000) who controls the terms under which the global economy functions. Not all global consumers has a similar income level, even if they buy and use the same products. For this reason the “international demonstration effect” of globalization, the notion first proposed by Nurkse (1957), may come into play in developing countries a la South Africa. As James (2000) explains, the rapid spread of mass media and the dominance of foreign programming on the local media channels can lead the consumers to a direct contact with better products and superior consumer lifestyles and then to a changed set of preferences that cannot be satisfied. Ger and Belk (1996) made a similar observation, noting that “rising consumer expectations and desires are fueled by global mass media,

Authors: Lee, Anselm.
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Global Media Use in South Africa
_
Slayer, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and Survivor were prominent among the programs being
offered on South African television at the time of the study, and these programs were on the
regular programming lineup for one of the following television services in 2000: three
national SABC (South African Broadcasting Corporation) channels, e-TV (20% of which is
owned by the Warner Bros. Studios), or subscription-based M-Net channels. Therefore,
many of the foreign programs—mostly from the U. S.—were identified in the survey by
South African teenagers as favorites.
In addition, most global products are originated from the United States and other
developed nations, even if the association with a specific country might have weakened
over time for some products and may weaken in the future for others. McDonald’s and
Coca Cola, for instance, would be the first names that come to mind whenever one thinks of
global products. Therefore, globalization and Westernization are often understood as one
and the same, with the United States being “the global police officer of the world” (Steele,
2000) who controls the terms under which the global economy functions.
Not all global consumers has a similar income level, even if they buy and use the
same products. For this reason the “international demonstration effect” of globalization, the
notion first proposed by Nurkse (1957), may come into play in developing countries a la
South Africa. As James (2000) explains, the rapid spread of mass media and the dominance
of foreign programming on the local media channels can lead the consumers to a direct
contact with better products and superior consumer lifestyles and then to a changed set of
preferences that cannot be satisfied. Ger and Belk (1996) made a similar observation,
noting that “rising consumer expectations and desires are fueled by global mass media,


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