Policy implications of mass media and telecommunication convergence in developing countries
the case of Korea communications commission
The globalization of technology coupled with the expanding world market size is changing the pace of technology adoption in developing countries. The collision of traditional mass media and telecommunication as a result of technology convergence presents opportunities as well as challenges to developing countries. A policy alternative that has been proposed for developing countries is the introduction of greater competition and unification of regulatory agencies for mass media and telecommunications. These policy responses, however, have implications for the development of indigenous communications industries, cultural preservation, national security, defense, and national development planning.
This study therefore examines the policy implications of mass media and telecommunication convergence in developing countries in order to empirically determine the truth or otherwise of the claims that have dominated public debate. While some policy experts argue that effective communication convergence policies promote competition by opening up the market for new entrants, others believe that third world countries do not need competition. Secondly, as some policy experts recommend unification of regulatory institutions as a necessary condition for effective regulation, others do not see unification as a sufficient condition. They recommend proper coordination of institutions instead of mergers as ideal for developing countries to benefit from convergence.
After an empirical study, the evidence seems to support the assertion that greater competition is useful to all countries, including less populous developing countries with low GDP per capita and low literacy rates. Again, the evidence supported the view that effective coordination between institutions for traditional mass media (newspaper, radio and
Television) and the telecommunication media (telefax, landline telephone), instead of simple unification is the practical path for developing countries to benefit from communication convergence.
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