The Problems Of Utilizing Professional Journalism In Uganda

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This study empirically examines the professional role professional journalists

in Uganda in the context of the country’s democratization process. The finding

of the study show that Uganda professional journalists basically see

themselves as working for the public interest mainly through serving the people

and challenging the powerful. On the basis of these findings the article ends

with reflections on the need to rethink the prevailing approach in strategies to

empower journalists in Uganda process in Kampala District.

For a media profession so central to society’s sense of self, it is of crucial

importance to understand the influences of changing labour conditions,

professional cultures, and the appropriation of technologies on the nature of

work in journalism. In this paper, the various strands of international research

on the changing nature of journalism as a profession are synthesized, using

media logic as developed by Altheide and Snow (1979 and 1991) and updated

by Dahlgren (1996) as a conceptual framework. A theoretical key to

understanding and explaining journalism as a profession is furthermore to

focus on the complexities of concurrent disruptive developments affecting its

performance from the distinct perspective of its practitioners for without

them, there is no news.

Media Logic Media work in general and journalism in particular takes place

both within and outside of institutions (including salaried employees and an

army of stringers and freelancers), by both professionals and amateurs

(including so-called ‘citizen media’), both within and across particular media

(especially considering converged newsrooms). In order to adequately describe

and analyze the various ways in which practitioners in journalism are affected

by and give meaning to such a complex environment of cultural production,

one needs a holistic, integrated perspective on the nature of media work. In

this context I use the concept of ‘media logic’, more specifically as taken up and

developed by Dahlgren, where he refers to media logic as ‘the particular


institutionally structured features of a medium, the ensemble of technical and

organizational attributes which impact on what gets represented in the

medium and how it gets done. In other words, media logic points to specific

forms and processes that organize the work done within a particular medium.

Yet, media logic also indicates the cultural competence and frames of

perception of audiences/users, which in turn reinforces how production within

the medium takes place’ (1996, 63). Media logic can be medium-specific

because it primarily relates to production patterns within a given technological

and organizational context.

Media logic is a useful perspectival tool to overcome what may be the most

crucial problem in my discussion of what it is like to work in the (news) media:

the notion, that what a journalist does is guided by distinctly different ideas

and factors of influence than what informs the work of a game developer,

television producer, or advertising creative and vice versa. One thing all these

fields have in common is the fact that journalism, advertising, broadcasting,

film, and game development are all examples of the production of culture. The

stories told in the news, in the movies and in games or advertisements all build

upon and contribute to the collective memories, traditions and belief systems of

a community or society.

Applying media logic as a mapping tool for contemporary mainstream newswork means I examine the [1] institutional, [2] technological, [3] organizational and [4] cultural features of what it is like to work in journalism. Ultimately, this approach may be a useful way to consider journalism as part of (and tied into) a broader media ecosystem, as operating in a wider context of social, economical and technological forces, and as a profession that has its own unique ways of dealing with such influences.

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ESTHER, N (2021). The Problems Of Utilizing Professional Journalism In Uganda. Afribary. Retrieved from

MLA 8th

ESTHER, NAMALE "The Problems Of Utilizing Professional Journalism In Uganda" Afribary. Afribary, 12 Jun. 2021, Accessed 28 Oct. 2021.


ESTHER, NAMALE . "The Problems Of Utilizing Professional Journalism In Uganda". Afribary, Afribary, 12 Jun. 2021. Web. 28 Oct. 2021. < >.


ESTHER, NAMALE . "The Problems Of Utilizing Professional Journalism In Uganda" Afribary (2021). Accessed October 28, 2021.