APPLICABILITY OF DEVELOPMENT JOURNALISM: AN APPRAISAL
Development-oriented journalism, as understood from a Western perspective, is undermined by its construct as a form of protocol journalism because of its predominant reportage on government policies and projects rather than community concerns. Development-journalism is often wedded to concepts like: community dialogue, re-connection with the grassroots, empowerment, public advocacy, catalyst for positive change, and immersion reporting. Western journalists however, see this reporting genre as akin to protocol news reporting, which mainly focuses on government pronouncements and development policies. Perhaps the constructive role of development journalism - regardless of political or cultural settings - has not been promoted as well as it should? Its dull image, however, was less thfault of its fundamental goals than how it was practised by journalists in a media environment that is regulated to excess. Current scepticism with the narrative, change oriented, value-added and advocacy form of development reporting genre is not so much concerned with its alleged subjectivity.