U. S. Model of Journalism and Latin American WatchdogWestern-based journalism practice, apparently the dominant model, can sometimes be the prescribed model in assisting countries undergoing democratic development. The same may be said of Latin American nations who adopted the U. S. or Western model of journalism in overthrowing a repressive regime at the risk of limiting the path in their search for own home-grown practice of reportage. This paper then first tries to trace the reasons why the Western model almost became the default practice among different open countries and then a comparison of the Western to Latin American journalism practice.
Journalism's Western Origin, where deriveTo understand the concept of western journalism model, it is said one must confront issues of definition and interpretation immediately, and that diversity must be taken into account (Hodgon, et. al 2001). By this end, some experts argue that it is best to postpone any attempt to define it until one has inquired into its history. As a western phenomenon, journalism must not be considered as timeless thing that is wanting of change and variety. Like all the other aspects of the realm of human experience, journalism has a history; therefore, one’s understanding of its growth must be sensitive to those changes.
Relative to this discussion are the views of revolutionists Max Weber and Friedrich Nietzsche during their time. Weber (1864–1920) said, "Definition can be attempted, if at all, only at the conclusion of the study. " Meanwhile, Nietzsche (1844–1900) held that "only that which has no history can be defined. ” To understand then journalism, we look to its history. Journalism's origin can be traced from the old phenomenon of early Greek historians, making an impression of journalism's prominent role in the early western civilization.
Windschuttle (1999) noted the start of journalism as a detached form of reporting of reality in these era. The idea of detaching oneself from his own culture and becoming a critic of one's own practice is unmistakably a western sensibility and considered by many as one of the western culture's great strengths. Spooling from this same thread, Hartley, meanwhile argued that journalism may be looked at as product of modernity, of European and euro sourced societies since the last three centuries.
This is so since both colonialism and imperial expansion are promoting notions of freedom, progress and thereby associated with the erosion of traditional knowledge. In turn, such were replaced by the virtual forming of communities linked by their media (Hartley, 1996, quoted in Windschuttle, 1999). Other studies, however, point to journalism's origin to the Enlightenment era where democracy is one of the primordial values being promoted. The practice of journalism during this period it was said have, in effect, help increase the proliferation of journalism studies, training and practice with democracy as the main value being promoted (Josephi, 2005; Tihiwai-Smith, 2003; Jacobson, 1993).
The concept of a liberal press originating from Enlightenment was also mentioned by Doody, who illustrates that there is an evident connection of the western ideal of freedom and accepted function as watchdog in western democratic societies (2004).