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1.0 Background to the Study
According to Ude (1998) in his book, Introduction to Reporting and News Writing, he defines news as “the timely report of facts or opinions that hold interests or importance or both for a considerable number of people”. Ukozor (2003) sees news “as something new and unusual. While Kamath (1980: 33), says news “is any event, ideas or opinions that is timely, interests, or affects a large number of people in a community and that is capable of being understood by them”. News moves through many different media, based on word of mouth, printing, postal systems, broadcasting, and electronic communication. Having access to current events and up-to-date information has value in the modern world because of the constantly changing nature of the world. Without regular access to news, most people would be unaware of the various events taking place, both locally and around the world that has an impact on their lives. The news media plays an important role in society. It sets the stage for political news, manages their agenda, sources, and controls the information. It functions as a window to the outside world, and possesses the ability to shape public knowledge, attitudes, and voting behavior.
While not everything that happens has an impact on all people equally, news organizations generally tailor their content to a specific individual. Events happening in a distant location can impact economies and various commodities over the long term. This means that having access to this information can help investors to better understand what is affecting their investments and allow them react accordingly. A drought in a foreign country can cause grain prices to rise in other regions as the afflicted population begins calling for aid from allies. Finally, political tides turn far too quickly, and without being informed, it is difficult for people who are affected by it to be prepared for the results. Further, this is why many of the stories that are broadcast on nightly news programs are far-reaching and varied. A term which has entered common parlance to differentiate cable news from traditional news broadcast is “Network News”.
The standardized criteria for judging news value as discussed by Ukozor (2003) are as follows: consequences / impact, prominence, timeliness, novelty and Human interest.
1. Consequence: is the most important criterion in determining news value. It has to do with news events that affect the lives of the largest number of people. It should be considered at every level, both for good news and bad. It is the grater effects.
2. Prominence: deals on the well-known people (important personalities), institutions in the society etc. proximity bothers on the events that happened within the locality of the audience.
3. Timeliness: means that news should be reported to the public which it is fresh e as soon as it unfolds lest it become stale news.
4. Novelty: means the unusual or odd issues that happened in the society (oddity).
5. Human interest has to do with stories that most often touch human feelings.
The term radio news is similar to television news but is transmitted through the medium of radio; it is based on the audio aspect rather than the visual aspect. Sound bites are captured through various reporters and played back through the radio. News updates occur more often on the radio than on the television, usually about once or twice an hour. Newscasts, also known as bulletins or news programs, differ in content, tone and presentation style depending on the format of the channel on which they are broadcast, and their timeslot.
Radio news can range from as little as a minute to as much as the stations entire schedule, such as the case of all news radio or talk radio. Radio news can be a mix of local, national and international news, as well as entertainment, weather and traffic, or they may be incorporated into separate bulletins. In view of this, the study would attempt to examine the perception of Ibadan residents of Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) network news.
In 1951, the Nigerian Broadcasting Services (NBS) was established with the intention to indigenizing broadcasting. Incidentally, the radio station established at Ibadan happened to be the first broadcasting station to be established in any of the British controlled territories, while it runs an independent station it got technical supports from the British Broadcasting Corporation (B.B.C). The voice of Nigeria (VON) went on air January 1, 1962 as part of the NBC. The corporation was a parastatal of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, the corporation
later became the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN). The Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) was established by a decree on February 28, 1979. The corporation is charged with the responsibility of radio broadcasting on short wave or powerful Medium Wave for effective simultaneous reception in more than one state of the federation at any point in time.
Ibadan is the capital city of Oyo State and the third largest metropolitan area, by population, in Nigeria, after Lagos and Kano, with a population of over 3 million Ibadan is also the largest metropolitan geographical area. At Nigerian independence, Ibadan was the largest and most populous city in the country and the third in Africa after Cairo and Johannesburg. Ibadan is located in south-western Nigeria, 128 km inland northeast of Lagos and 530 km southwest of Abuja, the federal capital, and is a prominent transit point between the coastal region and the areas to the north. Ibadan had been the center of administration of the old Western Region since the days of the British colonial rule, and parts of the city's ancient protective walls still stand to this day. The principal inhabitants of the city are the Yoruba‟s. Ibadan, surrounded by seven hills, is the second largest city in Nigeria. It came into existence when bands of Yoruba renegades following the collapse of the Yoruba Oyo Empire, began settling in the area towards the end of the 18th century; attracted by its strategic location between the forests and the plains.
1.1 Statement of the Problem
FRCN is widely perceived as pro-government in its news delivery because there are national burning issues that the station suppresses, manipulates or kills which some privately-owned stations would freely report. As a result of this, people seem to have largely lost public trust and confidence in the station‟s network news. Therefore, the study would try to examine critically how the Ibadan residents perceive FRCN network news.
1.2 Objective of the Study
The following were the objectives of the study:
I. To find out how often the residents listen to FRCN network.
II.To ascertain whether the residents like listening to FRCN network news.
III.To determine the resident‟s perception of FRCN network news.
1.3 Research Questions
The following were the research questions which guided the study:
I. How often do the residents listen to FRCN network news?
II.Do the residents like listening to FRCN network news?
III.How do the residents perceive FRCN network news?
1.4 Significance of the Study
The following were the significance of the study:
1. It would enable FRCN to know how effective its network news is and what the audience think about it; the findings of the study would help the network station to adjust where necessary and ultimately lead to effective news dissemination.
2. It would also add to the body of literature in the area of media audience.
1.5 Scope of the Study
The study was limited to the residents of Ibadan town, Oyo State.
1.6 Organization of the Study
The content of the research project was arranged thus: Chapter One gives an introduction of the study, Chapter Two will attempt to review literature as regards this study, Chapter three will look at methodology, and Chapter four will look to analyze data while Chapter five will deal with the summary and conclusion.
1.7 Operational Definition of Terms
The following are the meanings of terms as used in the context of the study:
Audience: refers to the people who listen tothe station‟s news broadcast.
Perception: refers to the way in which something is regarded, understood or interpreted.
Network News: refers to news received simultaneously by the audience in the nooks andcrannies of the country.
News: refers to any event, idea, or opinion that is timely, that interests or affects a large numberof people in a community, and that is capable of being understood by them.
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