APO

New Report on African media shows western sources dominate how the Africa story is told

Published

on

One-third of all African stories in news outlets on the continent are sourced from foreign news services according to a new report from Africa No Filter (www.AfricaNoFilter.org). The ‘How African Media Covers Africa’, highlights the fact that stories about Africa continue to be told through the same persistent and negative stereotypes and frames of poverty, disease, conflict, poor leadership and corruption.

Download the How African Media Cover Africa report: http://bit.ly/AfricaNoFilter

The research surveyed 38 African editors, analyzed content from 60 African news outlets in 15 countries (Botswana, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, DRC, Egypt, Tunisia, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal) between September and October 2020. In addition, four facilitated focus groups were held with 25 editors of African media, editors of Pan African outlets and international correspondents.  The results confirm challenges and experiences that are common knowledge within the industry: advertising revenue and newsrooms are shrinking, influencing the kind of news that Africans read and that news is largely negative and conflict filled.

Key findings from the report show that the sources for news gathering on African countries are problematic, the resulting content continues to feed old stereotypes, and often the quality of local journalism doesn't allow for nuanced and contextualized storytelling that is critical for telling stories about the 54 countries in Africa.

  • 63% of outlets surveyed don’t have correspondents in other countries in Africa  
  • 1/3 of all coverage on Africa was from non-African sources, with AFP and BBC  accounting for ¼ of all stories found in African outlets about other African countries.  African news agencies contributed minimally.  
  • 81% of the stories analyzed were classified as “hard news” e.g. conflicts and crises driven by events – they were also largely political in nature   
  • 13% of the news focused specifically on political violence, civil unrest, armed conflict  
  • South Africa, followed by Egypt were the countries with the most diverse coverage that was not necessarily linked to  newsy events meaning that those two countries are probably the ‘best known’ on the continent

“Media is incredibly influential in setting the agenda and determining narratives about Africa,” says Moky Makura, executive director at Africa No Filter.  “The research clearly shows that despite years of independence, Africans still don’t hold the pen when it comes to writing our stories.  More importantly, we continue to promote the narratives about Africa being broken, dependent and lacking agency  through the stories we share in our media about each other. We need to take back the pen.”

Africa No Filter is a not-for-profit set up last year to help shift harmful and stereotypical narratives about Africa through research, advocacy and grant-making to storytellers.  It is funded by the Ford Foundation, Bloomberg, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Luminate, Open Society Foundation, Comic Relief, the Hilton Foundation and the British Council.

Makura adds: “Ironically, 50% of editors surveyed thought their coverage of other African countries didn’t contain stereotypes. It shows clearly that we have some work to do in educating ourselves about the role we play in perpetuating outdated stereotypes about ourselves.  Narrative matters and it has implications beyond just storytelling, it impacts investment in Africa, on youth and opportunities people see in their countries, on migration, creativity and innovation,” Makura says.

In response to this report, Africa No Filter is launching the continent’s first and only news agency that will focus on stories of creativity, innovation, arts & culture, and human interest to fill the gap in the market.

NNN

NNN: :is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng

Coronavirus – Nigeria: Community informants use mobile data collection tools to strengthen COVID-19 surveillance Central African Republic ‘highly unstable’ despite significant progress – UN peacekeeping chief Coronavirus – Eritrea: Ministry of Health announcement (February 24, 2021) Coronavirus – Ethiopia: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) Coronavirus – Malawi: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) FIFA President’s African visits continue Coronavirus – South Africa: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) Coronavirus – Eswatini: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) Coronavirus – Nigeria: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) Coronavirus – Uganda: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) Building greater sustainability, climate resilience in West Africa Local content at the top of Mozambique’s development agenda (By Charné Hundermark) Coronavirus – Rwanda: COVID-19 update (February 24, 2021) West African countries step up Ebola preparedness Angola’s 65-year oil history has been good for Angola despite some challenges (by Andres Vega) African football at a crucial stage with the polls of the African Football Confederation (CAF) looming Reunion for Campenaerts at the Belgian “Opening Weekend” Manchester United announces partnership with StarTimes to bring MUTV to Africa Hennessy Becomes First Global Spirits Partner of the NBA Canon launches EOS M50 Mark II as social content creation continues to soar Progress in women’s football highlighted at meetings in Morocco African Energy Chamber Investment Committee commits to facilitate multi-billion USD investments in 2021 for African energy projects Video press release: WHO Africa online press briefing on COVID-19 in Africa Coronavirus – Eswatini: COVID-19 update (February 23, 2021) Coronavirus – Ethiopia: COVID-19 update (February 23, 2021) Coronavirus – Nigeria: COVID-19 update (February 23, 2021) Coronavirus – Eritrea: Ministry of Health announcement (February 23, 2021) Raubenheimer satisfied with Bok Women’s progress Coronavirus – Malawi: COVID-19 update (February 23, 2021) The first doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were delivered to Ghana via COVAX The Government of Pakistan and the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation signed an annual financing plan amounting to US $ 1.1 billion Coronavirus – Uganda: COVID-19 update (February 23, 2021) NaturalShrimp Signs Letter of Intent to Acquire Aquaculture Assets from Hydrenesis Aquaculture, LLC Telecoming partners with Ounousa to enrich its mobile offering with entertainment content for women Zimbabwe’s First Lady congratulates Senator Dr Rasha Kelej on her nomination as African Woman of the Year 2020 Brooklyn’s Harden and Phoenix’s Paul Main Reserves for 2021 NBA All-Star Game SAP Young Professional program helps build a more collaborative digital workforce in East Africa National Refugees’ Commission donates food and non-food items to IDPs Coronavirus – Malawi: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Coronavirus – Uganda: WHO supports Uganda to mitigate risks of COVID-19 transmission during election period Nigeria Petrol landing cost now N186 per liter Coronavirus – Gambia: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Thousands of Ethiopians seek asylum in Sudan’s Blue Nile state Coronavirus – South Africa: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Coronavirus – Nigeria: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Coronavirus – Ethiopia: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Coronavirus – Eswatini: COVID-19 update (February 22, 2021) Coronavirus – Eritrea: Ministry of Health announcement (February 22, 2021) Nigerian Ministry of Petroleum Resources delegation holds bilateral meeting with Equatorial Guinea Ministry of Mines and Hydrocarbons Cameroonian Tradex inaugurates its first gas station in Equatorial Guinea as part of its expansion plan