Monique Dagnaud

The State and the Media Publication date : September 1, 2000

Can the control of television broadcasting be justified? Should a broadcasting policy that favours cultural diversity be defended? What are the ties between media bosses and politicians or administrators? How much of the decision-making process obeys its own internal logic and how much of it is totally unpredictable? How is the public broadcasting arena constructed? Can it be said that the content of programming is governed by an “elitist plot”? How is French media control different from that of other countries? How did it develop and how can it be applied to on-line media? Sociologist Monique Dagnaud has worked for many years as a member of France’s Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel. In this book, she vividly portrays the various circles of power that control broadcasting in France. She describes the decision-making process, and the various points of view which may work together or oppose one another. Above all, she questions the way the French state has tried to control an industrial sector that it opened to private business interests — but which remains a symbol of power. Is there a French model of broadcasting? How has it evolved? Who will win the battle that is now being waged: the citizens or the giant global groups?

Monique Dagnaud is a research director at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and teaches at the IEP of Paris. From 1991 to 1999, she was a member of the Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel.