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Expanding Boundaries of Understanding? The Mental Maps of Transnational Television Journalism
Unformatted Document Text:  Grieves - Expanding Boundaries 25 transnational news organization combining several journalistic cultures, juggling these factors becomes even more complicated, with potentially less predictable results. What these findings point to more broadly is a paradoxical situation for television journalism in general, and for the transnational variety especially. On one hand, television journalism is all about specific places. News operations go to great lengths to send crews to specific locations, even if remote. Those crews capture video that is accompanied by on-screen captions with particular place names, so that viewers can vicariously experience different spots on the globe. On the other hand, globalization in its many manifestations, particularly the instantaneity of electronic communication, may deterritorialize us more and more, and continue to alter the meaning of place. Transnational television news permeates national borders in ways that potentially shifts those barriers to the background instead of the foreground. This study has uncovered evidence of a pan-European journalistic outlook at Arte, even signs of an emerging global news outlook. Yet when Arte anchor William Irigoyen greets his viewers in French and in German at the start of the newscast, his words are heard by a relatively limited audience. Mental maps of the world may in some cases find their boundaries expanded, but with Arte’s modest viewership amidst the diverse range of media offerings in today’s environment, those mental maps are also more likely to be fragmented. The travel component of this research was made possible by research funding from the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University; the author is grateful for this support.

Authors: Grieves, Kevin.
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Grieves - Expanding Boundaries 
25 
transnational news organization combining several journalistic cultures, juggling these factors 
becomes even more complicated, with potentially less predictable results. 
 
What these findings point to more broadly is a paradoxical situation for television 
journalism in general, and for the transnational variety especially. On one hand, television 
journalism is all about specific places. News operations go to great lengths to send crews to 
specific locations, even if remote. Those crews capture video that is accompanied by on-screen 
captions with particular place names, so that viewers can vicariously experience different spots 
on the globe. On the other hand, globalization in its many manifestations, particularly the 
instantaneity of electronic communication, may deterritorialize us more and more, and continue 
to alter the meaning of place.  
Transnational television news permeates national borders in ways that potentially shifts 
those barriers to the background instead of the foreground. This study has uncovered evidence of 
a pan-European journalistic outlook at Arte, even signs of an emerging global news outlook. Yet 
when Arte anchor William Irigoyen greets his viewers in French and in German at the start of the 
newscast, his words are heard by a relatively limited audience. Mental maps of the world may in 
some cases find their boundaries expanded, but with Arte’s modest viewership amidst the diverse 
range of media offerings in today’s environment, those mental maps are also more likely to be 
fragmented.  
 
 
 
 
The travel component of this research was made possible by research funding from the Scripps College of 
Communication at Ohio University; the author is grateful for this support.
 
 


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