Referees' reports - 2010
The author establishes as a premise, following Foucault, that discourse plays a role in a strategic system in which power is involved and by which it works... and that power works through discourse. The starting point of the article is the contributions of Foucault and Gramsci, who consider that the media have a key role in the construction of hegemonies and the constant negotiation of power relations. Following the tradition of "political economy of communication", the author proposes that in the new capitalist model the media are constituted as devices that allow the exercising of power to some actors but not others, which permits establishing power relations in favour of some and not others.
The study of the structure of the Spanish media industry, based on an European comparative analysis, an economic-financial analysis of the media companies, and qualitative analysis of business management and organization, determines that the economic power in the neoliberal globalization has suffered a transformation through structural changes. The author points out nice changes that, among others, are called named like “globalization”, “cognitive capitalism” or “empire”.
The media have two characteristics: an economic interest and an ideological interest. The author establishes that the media regulation and ownership, and the definition of informative products and services and, in general, decisions about the media, help the actors in positions of power in such markets and structural business to have a privileged position to determine and/or configure the discourse of the media.
With a clear, simple and objective manner, the author breaks down the relevant variables (regulation, ownership, finance, informative products and services) to arrive to an inevitable conclusion: that through these elements the economic power directly determines the media discourse, resulting in a greater concentration of economic, political and media/communicative power.
The author makes an undeniable contribution. He or she provides evidence of how ideology is dominated by the economic interests, which confirms the thesis of the Marxist theory: that economy ultimately dominates. This shows that the “ideological interests” of the media respond to a concentration of economic power, in the first instance, and then to the concentration of the media companies themselves. The text is useful, opportune, and necessary to understand what is currently happening with the media: they are political actors strongly conditioned by the economic power.– Melitón Guevara Castillo, Ph.D. Autonomous University of Tamaulipas, Mexico.
Report on the article "Political power, economic and communicative neoliberal society" by José Miguel Túñez López, Ph.D., Lecturer of Journalism at the University of Santiago de Compostela.
Arguments for the quality of the article
1. Objectives and structure of the article. The objectives and methodology are relevant, well outlined and perfectly contextualized. The structure of the article is also correct and enables the reader to follow the subject in a coherent and reasoned manner.
2. Interest and originality. The article emphasizes the importance of discourse and the media as message, platform and actors in a capitalist model analyzed from the perspective of corporate financing and acquisition of economic resources, which are not always taken into account when analyzing the dynamics of production on the media. The study presents a very interesting global context and a focus on the movements of concentration of power (not just the concentration of shares in multimedia structures) economic, political and communicative.
3. Methodology. The empirical and qualitative references are suitable for the analysis of the corporate structure of the Spanish audiovisual media. The comparative economic and financial analysis of the media companies, the in-depth interviews, and the review of trends in business management and organization in Europe demonstrate the validity of the methodology.
4. Assessment of results and conclusions. The impacts of the freedom of the media to operate as producers of content which are a reference of reality for societies can only be interpreted taking into account the interrelated dependencies and actions of the economic, political and communicative powers. The article proposes that these interdependent relationships could collide with a full development of the right to plural and truthful information as essential support for a democratic society, not only in the final contents that are broadcast, but also in the unequal access to the communicative flows that create the informational message –which strongly supports the publication and reading of the article.
5. Overall rating