CFP: ‘Journalism Studies’ Special Issue Call for Papers:

Rethinking the Sociology of News: Global, Empirical and Theoretical Perspectives 

Special Issue Editors: 

Hayes Mabweazara, University of Glasgow – 

Catherine Happer, University of Glasgow – 

Manuscript deadline – 1 May 2022 

Journalism studies is defined by and benefits from its interdisciplinary nature and broad scope of interests and priorities. However, one consequence of this is that the way in which distinct disciplines might differentially shape and bring value to our understanding of the field can be overlooked.  A key strand of the current foundational critique of journalism was established and deeply rooted in the discipline of Sociology, which gave rise to specific concerns and approaches to understanding the ways in which news organisations manage the processes through which information is gathered and transformed into news and the pressures that encourage journalists to follow familiar patterns of news making.  In the British context, the late 20th century was a particularly prolific period for the sociology of news in which the empiricism of institutional research centres such as the Glasgow University Media Group (GUMG) played a leading role in setting the agenda for journalism and media studies. The conceptual basis for such work was the understanding of journalism as embedded within systems of power (economic, political, social, cultural) and as institutionalised through everyday practices, shared beliefs, and norms.  Methodological approaches which involved the analysis of production processes, patterns in content, audience reception and the formation of public opinion addressed the totality of communication systems with journalism and journalists as key agents in driving a range of societal outcomes. 

The body of work produced by the GUMG in particular was influenced by the political economy of the media as represented, for example, by Herman and Chomsky’s Propaganda Model, ideas of media as cultural hegemony and the role of ‘primary definers’ in the work of Stuart Hall.  Shared foci around journalistic selection, inclusion, and omission paralleled work in the US, including McCombs and Shaw’s research on ‘agenda setting,’ Robert Entman’s ‘media framing’ and David Manning White’s seminal ‘gatekeeper theory,’ among others.  The importance of structures of ownership and control and the extent to which the broader ideological climate shapes the thinking of journalists also came to the fore. News production was also seen as a highly regulated and routine process shaped by organisational pressures, with very little acknowledgment of journalistic agency. For some time, this pioneering body of work collectively ushered in revolutionary approaches to understanding news as a historically contingent ‘manufactured’ product. 

However, the complexities of contemporary societies and their media systems have increasingly rendered these early sociological approaches anachronistic, and in some cases, inadequate as explanatory frameworks for understanding the operations of journalism in the 21st century. The systems of power or ideological climate of news production have changed significantly and the field of analysis has expanded beyond a focus on the production of information flows and their impacts within Western economies. New political and social formations, including the complexities of increased globalisation and the emergence of multicultural citizenship have become central concerns in changing social and political contexts in which new global news players are emerging. At the heart of these changes are developments in digital technologies which have radically transformed the working practices of journalists and news consumption habits. The time is long overdue for revisiting early sociological studies and their deep-rooted Western-centrism which continue to define journalism studies’ key areas of inquiry and the field’s theoretical and methodological direction globally. 

This special issue addresses the question of the continuing value of the priorities of the sociology of news and the importance of a sociological critique of journalism more generally, the dynamism and adaptability of its modes of analysis to different contexts, and the validity of the conceptualisations of power and resistance built into them. Themes and areas of particular interest may include: 

·        Emerging methodological approaches to studying news and news organisations 

·        Doing content analysis beyond mass media 

·        Conceptualising ‘media power’ in the age of big tech 

·        Constructing ‘public opinion’ through social media content production 

·        Agenda setting on social media platforms 

·        News values in non-Western contexts 

·        The impact of technological innovation on traditional sociological understandings of news production 

·        Studies that challenge and throw into question Anglo-American conceptions of news 

·        Changing connections between journalists and news sources 

·        Shifts in the culture and patterns of news consumption/reception 

·        The shifting nature of social class identifications and media audiences 

·        Contestable notions of bias and objectivity in the news media 

UMass PhD Program Info Session


The Department of Communication at UMass Amherst invites interested PhD applicants to a virtual visit and meet-and-greet with faculty and current graduate students.
The one-hour Zoom session aims to introduce you to faculty and their current research projects, connect you with graduate students, and answer questions that can help demystify the application process.
For 49 years, the Department of Communication has produced innovative, influential, and interdisciplinary scholarship about communication and its centrality to social, cultural, and political processes. Our diverse areas of focus include digital technology studies, film and media studies, media and cultural production, media effects, rhetoric and performance studies, social interaction and culture, and the political economy of communication. From across these areas, our faculty and PhD student community share a commitment to address issues of social inequality and work toward equity and social justice through our empirical research, multimodal scholarship, community outreach, and teaching and mentoring.
PhD students admitted to our program receive five years of funding. They are welcomed to the department’s vibrant research culture and the hospitable environment of the Five Colleges in the Pioneer Valley, including UMass Amherst, Amherst College, Smith College, Mt Holyoke College and Hampshire College. They benefit from diverse resources, including the option to pursue certificate programs in Film Studies, Feminist Studies, Ethnographic Research, Data Analytics and Computational Social Science, and Caribbean, Latin American, and Latino Studies. Recent PhD grads have taken tenure-track job posts at Emerson College, the University of Colorado, the University of Houston, Vanderbilt University, and Simon Fraser University.
Come and ask all your questions to our faculty and grad students. For other inquiries, contact PhD program Admissions Chair Dr Jonathan Corpus Ong at 

The registration link is:

Scholarship: MSc Strategic Communication – London School of Economic and Political Science

Applications are now open for graduates interested in pursuing an MSc in Strategic Communications at the Department of Media and Communications, London School of Economics and Political Science, from September 2022. The course offers students a critical theoretical exploration of strategic communications theory and practice, in the context of the wider field of media and communications scholarship. They will explore how the changing modes of communication, image making and storytelling enacted by organisations promote not only products and ideas/ideals but also places and experiences in an increasingly mediated and networked world. The students will critically engage with the ways that power circulates in, and through, the communications industries, and the consequences for how we see the world and our place within it.  

The course benefits from a student scholarship specifically for applicants from sub-Saharan Africa, and applications from the region are encouraged. Interested students can find out more about the course here.
They are welcome to email Prof Lee Edwards, programme director for the MSc, for more information ( They may also be interested in attending one of the LSE’s virtual graduate open days (including a session with the Department). We look forward to receiving your applications.

Invitation: Garbage in Popular Culture

4 November 2021
There will be a webinar at 16h00 SAST (GMT +2). You can join by clicking this link
Grace Martini (University of Tasmania)
Eleftheria Lekakis (Sussex University) 
Emmanuel Septime Sessou (Temple University)Emma Bloomfield (University of Nevada, Las Vegas) Myrian del Vecchio (Universidade Federal do Paraná)

Afterwards at 18h00 SAST for anyone in Johannesburg there will be an in-person artist residency visit (with drinks!) at Shade (166 Caroline St, Brixton, Johannesburg) with artists Tamzyn Botha and Francois Knoetze (whose work is featured on the book cover). If you’re coming to this please RSVP to me at so that we can ensure covid safety and beverage quantities. 
All welcome, please feel free to pass on to anyone interested. 

Prof Arnold S. (Arrie) de Beer

SACOMM mourns the passing of one of its founder members, Prof Arnold S. (Arrie) de Beer. Prof De Beer was part of the organisation from its inception, as one of the participants at a meeting in 1974 at UNISA where the forming of a new communication association was discussed, and helped draw up the first constitution of the organisation in 1977.  De Beer was awarded an Honorary Membership by SACOMM in recognition of his important historical role in the organisation.  De Beer was also the founding editor of the journal Ecquid Novi (later renamed African Journalism Studies), one of SACOMM’s affiliated journals. SACOMM pays tribute to a stalwart of the South African communications studies landscape and extends our condolences to his friends and family.

Call for Book Chapters

Communication Rights in Africa: Emerging Discourses and Perspectives

Editors: Tendai Chari (PhD), Senior Lecturer, University of Venda, South Africa
Ufuoma Akpojivi, (PhD) Associate Professor and Head of Department, University of Witwatersrand, South Africa

Communication rights has been an integral component of the human rights discourse for the longest of time (Hamelink, 1994; 2004a; 2004b, UNESCO, 1980; O’Siochru, 2005; CRIS, 2005; Alegre & O’Siochru, 2005). Approaches to the role of communications differ significantly across cultures, not least because communication rights encompass a multiplicity of rights. Compounding this conundrum is a persistent impasse regarding what communication rights entail in post-colonial contexts such as Africa, who should protect them, how and against whom, how existing rights relate to broader communication rights in a digital context. Jean d’ Arcy, is credited for making the first explicit reference the ‘the right to communicate’ in 1969 (O’Siochru, 2005). Back then proponents of the communication rights within the New World Information and Communication Order (NWICO) debate arena pivoted their demands around democratization of the global media system and a balanced information flow between the Global North and the Global South, which were crystalized in the 4Ds; Development; Democratization, Decolonization, and De- monopolization (Hamelink, 1994). African nations also expressed disquiet about increased homogenization of cultures, misrepresentation of minority cultures, media commercialism and concentration engendered. While communication rights and its more politicized variant, ‘the right to communicate’ had receded to the backburner after the ‘death’ of the NWICO debate, the new reality spawned by the digital revolution has re-ignited attention on a host of concerns which hark back to earlier demands by African nations to rethink the justness of the global media information distribution system. While many of the controversies associated with NWICO persist through discursive constructions that mimic earlier notions of the right to communicate, new issues, challenges, questions (and players) linked to interactivity, connectivity and inter-operability in the context of the digital environment have emerged (Musiani, et al 2009). A range of new human rights such as citizens’ right to access digital infrastructures such as the #DataMustfall campaign in South Africa in 2016 speak to the new and evolving expressions of citizenship in the context of digitality (Oyedemi, 2015). On the one hand, the open architecture of digital media has facilitated the subaltern to partake in national conversations and to assert their cultural identities. On the other hand, challenges of Internet connectivity and exclusionary business practices such astronomical prices of data and gadgets threaten prospects for inclusivity in the digital sphere. Serious concerns have also been raised questions about the spread of fake news, misinformation, disinformation and hate speech on social media networks and how these in turn subvert the rights of others and what legitimate regulatory measures can be implemented by the state without undercutting the rights of citizens. Balancing communication rights and other human rights within a digital environment is a delicate exercise, as some African governments, in their attempt to curtail the spread of fake news, hate speech and critical voices have either shutdown internet services (Mare 2020) or formulated restrictive regulatory mechanisms as witnessed in Uganda, Ethiopia, Nigeria amongst others (see Olaniyan and Akpojivi 2021). Also, concerns about intensification of commodification of information propelled by the dominance of neo-liberalism market have heightened demands for the right to self-expression and equal access to digital technologies and infrastructures courtesy in a context of an ever-increasing digital divide. The extent to which communication should be geared towards preservation of national identity and national development in Africa resonates with the NWICO discourse, but also connects with contemporary demands for decolonization of communication through protection of cultural diversity in a context where indigenous African cultures are increasingly marginalized while dissenting voices are jettisoned from public discourses (Article 19, 2003; Anawalt, 1994). The ever-expanding range of issues encompassed within the communication rights discourse, particularly within the African context where freedom of expression corporatization of the media coupled with state repression obfuscate understanding of what constitutes communication rights, who should protect them and how. This edited volume contributes to the understanding of the multiple dimensions of the communication rights discourse from an African perspective. We invite contributions that explore residual and emerging discourses around the content, conception, conversations, implementation, institutions and actors within the communication rights discourse. We are particularly interested in original contributions that tackle these issues using a broad range of theoretical and methodological approaches. The abstract must clearly state the objectives of the study, the theoretical framework and the methodological approaches to be deployed. Possible topics include, but are not limited to: 2

  • The human rights based approach to communication in Africa
  • Communication rights offline and online in Africa
  • Free-flow of information and communication rights
  • Freedom of expression as a communication right
  • The right to privacy, surveillance capitalism and communication rights
  • Social media and activism, clicktivism
  • Digital citizenship: rights and advocacy
  • Digital Activism and social movements
  • Internet shutdowns/censorship
  • Internet rights, universal access to the Internet
  • Politics of digital infrastructures
  • Communication rights and digital monopolies
  • Public Service media and communication rights
  • Media regulation and communication rights
  • Rights -based approach to journalism
  • Investigative journalism and communication rights
  • Communication rights for social bots
  • Mainstream Journalism and human rights
  • Media representations/misrepresentation and communication rights
  • Digital piracy and communication rights
  • Intellectual property rights
  • Citizen journalism as a human right
  • User-content comments and communication rights
  • Open access publishing and communication rights
  • Content Sharing, Wikis and communication rights
  • The Knowledge Movement and Communication rights
  • Language rights and the media
  • Communication Rights and Indigenous Knowledge Systems
  • Communication rights and decoloniality

Abstracts and biographies

Abstracts should be between 400 and 500 words.
Abstracts should be emailed as word to and

Biographies should not be more than 200 words

Length of Articles

Articles should not be more than 7000 words including references Reference Style: Harvard
Important Dates
Deadline for Accepting Abstracts: 15 December 2021 Notification for Accepted Abstracts: 31 January 2022

Deadline for Full Papers: 30 April 2022 Expected Date of Publication: 31 October 2022

Targeted Publisher: Routledge


Alegre, Alain and O’Siochru, Sean (2005) “Communication Rights”. In A Ambros, V Peugeot and D. Pimienta (Eds.) World Matters: Multicultural Perspectives on Information Societies, pp475-502. Caen: C&F Publishers.

Anawalt, C. Howard (1984) The Right to Communicate. Denver Journal of International Law & Policy, 13(2): 219-236.

D’ Arcy, Jean (1969) Direct Broadcast Satellites and the Right to Communicate. EBU Review, 118, 14-18. 4

Hamelink Cees and Hoffman Julia (2008) The State of the Right to Communicate. Global Media Journal, 7(13) 1-16.

Hamelink, Cees (2004) Did WSIS Achieve Anything at all? Gazette: The International Journal for Communication Studies, 66(3-4):281-290.

Hamelink, Cees (2004) Towards a Human Right to Communicate. Canadian Journal of Communication, 29: 205-212.

Mare, Admire (2020) State-Ordered Internet Shutdowns and Digital Authoritarianism in Zimbabwe. International Journal of Communication, 14: 4244-4263.

Musiani, Francesca, Pava Elena and Padovani Claudia (2009) Investigating Discourses on Human Rights in the Digital Age: Emerging Norms and Policy Challenges. International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR, Annual Congress on “Human Rights and Communication”, July 2009, Mexico: Mexico, pp359-378. Retrieved from

Olaniyan, Akintola and Akpojivi, Ufuoma. (2021). Transforming Communication, Social Media, Counter-Hegemony and the Struggle for the Soul of Nigeria. Information, Communication & Society, 24 (3): 422-437.

O’Siochru, Sean (2005) Assessing Communication Rights: A Handbook. New York: CRIS. Oyedemi, Toks (2015) Internet Access as Citizen’s Right? Citizenship in the Digital Age.

Citizenship Studies, 19 (3-4); 450-464.
UNESCO (1980) Many Voices One World. UNESCO: Paris.

HR: The Centre for Film and Media Studies (CFMS) (UCT)

The Centre for Film and Media Studies (CFMS) in the Faculty of Humanities wishes to appoint a suitable candidate to help develop the Centre’s teaching, production and research in digital and mobile media studies, as soon as possible.


  • A relevant Master’s level qualification is a minimum requirement, while a PhD or significant progress to a PhD would be desirable.
  • Experience in teaching digital, social media, multimedia and/or journalistic production skills at undergraduate level.
  • Ability to teach across both practical and theoretical dimensions of our programmes.
  • Evidence of creative, practical and/or research engagement.


  • Supervision of creative and research projects.
  • Industry experience in digital, multimedia, journalism and/or social media production.
  • A record of creative practice in the field of digital media.
  • The ability to develop the Centre’s digital and mobile media curriculum and convene academic and creative courses in this area.
  • Active research interests in areas such as digital and social media studies, data journalism, internet studies, virtual reality, gaming, ethics and regulation of social media – as evidenced by conference attendance and/or publications and/or creative output.
  • Research and teaching interest in African feminisms.


The successful candidate would:

  • Be responsible for supporting web and multimedia production across production streams.
  • Lecture on digital and social media in the Media and/or Film majors.
  • Convene production and academic courses.
  • Supervise student projects and dissertations.
  • Contribute to research outputs in the Centre.

The 2021 annual cost of employment at Lecturer Level, including benefits, is R765 575

To apply, please e-mail the below documents in a single pdf file to Mr Ian Petersen at

Please ensure the title and reference number are indicated in the subject line.

An application that does not comply with the above requirements will be regarded as incomplete.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and may be required to undergo a competency test.

Telephone:                 021 650 2163  Website:

Reference number:    E210364      Closing date: 12 November 2021

UCT is a designated employer and is committed to the pursuit of excellence, diversity, and redress in achieving its equity targets in accordance with the Employment Equity Plan of the University and its Employment Equity goals and targets. Preference will be given to candidates from the under-represented Designated Groups. Our Employment Equity Policy is available at

UCT reserves the right not to appoint.

Executive Committee confirmed at AGM on 07.10.2021

At the Annual General Meeting of SACOMM Members, after a full day of Presentations, Panels and Discussions the SACOMM Members elected and confirmed a new ExCo serving for the following two years.

EMERGING SCHOLARS – Sylvia Skhosana & Mbogeni Msimango
SCREEN STUDIES – Collen Chambwera

PRESIDENT – Tanja Bosch

In the following few days, we will update the website with details of the new ExCo.

Congratulations to all!

HR: Call for Applications: DUT

Department of Media, Language and Communication

Associate Professor (Journalism) 

(Ref: 1449)

Minimum Requirements

Associate Professor:

•             A Doctorate in Journalism/Media Studies or in a  relevant field;

•             A minimum of seven DHET accredited publications/creative output over the preceding three years

•             Successful postgraduate supervision of at least two Master’s and one Doctorate

•             A minimum of 7 years of experience in higher education


•             Teaching experience at a University of Technology

•             Teaching experience in the Journalism discipline

•             Expertise in Print / Multimedia Journalism

•             Experience in curriculum development

•             Experience in innovative teaching and learning technologies, including e-learning.

Summary of duties:

The successful candidate will be expected to:

•             Teach and examine at undergraduate and post-graduate levels and supervise Master’s students in the Journalism Programme as assigned by the HOD and/or Programme Coordinator;

•             Carry out duties related to level coordination, curriculum development, teaching, research and community engagement;

•             Attend and contribute to Programme, Department, Faculty and University staff meeting, programme planning and promotion of the discipline;

•             Assume Headship responsibilities should circumstance demand for an appointee at the level of Professor, Associate Professor or Senior Lecturer; and

•             Contribute to the Programme’s research endeavours.


Associate Professor: R519 804 to R779 232 p a, plus benefits


Department of Media, Language and Communication

Senior Lecturer, Journalism (Ref: 1652)

Minimum Requirements:

Senior Lecturer

•             A completed Doctorate in Journalism/Media Studies or in an associated field

•             At least 5 years of University teaching experience

•             Candidates must demonstrate scholarship of teaching and must have produced/ published in the preceding three years three research outputs (e.g. accredited book, chapter in a book, accredited creative output, patent, review article, journal article, peer-reviewed conference proceedings, etc.) in the preceding three years.

•             Some evidence of success in obtaining funding for research

•             Successful supervision of at least one postgraduate student at Master’s level

Additional Requirements

•             Expertise in Radio Journalism / Media Law


•             Expertise in Print/Multimedia Journalism

•             Teaching experience at a University of Technology

•             Teaching experience in the Journalism discipline

•             Experience in curriculum development

•             Experience in innovative teaching and learning technologies, including e-learning.

Summary of duties:

The successful candidate will be expected to:

•             Teach and examine at undergraduate and post-graduate levels and supervise Master’s students in the Journalism Programme as assigned by the HOD and/or Programme Coordinator;

•             Carry out duties related to level coordination, curriculum development, teaching, research and community engagement;

•             Attend and contribute to Programme, Department, Faculty and University staff meeting, programme planning and promotion of the discipline;

•             Assume Headship responsibilities should circumstance demand for an appointee at the level of Professor, Associate Professor or Senior Lecturer; and

•             Contribute to the Programme’s research endeavours.


Senior Lecturer: R401 808 to R697 752 p a, plus benefits 

Contact Person: G Govindasamy

Email Address:

Status of Position: Permanent

Applications should include: 

o             A fully completed prescribed application form which can be obtained from (under the QUICK LINKS tab – @careers)

o             A detailed curriculum vita (explicitly stating experience or knowledge in the above mentioned fields)

o             Covering letter. 

o             Certified copies of all academic records and certificates

o             Current contact information of referees 

o             No manual applications will be accepted and incomplete applications will be disregarded.

o             Please email application to and quote the post reference and post description in the subject line

Kindly note:

Communication will be entered into with short-listed candidates only.  Only applications made on our application for employment form would be considered.

Closing date: 11 October 2021

SACOMM Online 2021

The Draft Programme for #SACOMM2021 is slowly starting to take shape and is growing almost daily.
Thursday, 7 October will be filled with different virtual panels, which members can and may attend as they see fit. The SACOMM Executive Committee has organised this year’s SACOMM Conference in lieu of being able to meet face to face as usual at SACOMM.
Please take a look at the programme – and watch this space for details of how you can participate.
Participation is free of charge, but members are encouraged to pay their annual membership fee as usual by contacting the SACOMM Secretariat via Annelize Vermeulen for details how to pay the annual membership fee of R100,-.

SACOMM 2021 Online