Globalisation has reshaped the way in which the world has been able to communicate. It has brought the global village together and through technology, has enabled communication beyond face to face contact. The acceleration of globalisation can largely be attributed to this, subsequently allowing for the successful trade between countries, the movement of finances, and for the flow of information.
But what really is globalisation?
“Globalisation refers to an international community influenced by technological development and economic, political and military interests. It is characterised by worldwide increase in interdependence, interactivity, interconnectedness, and the virtually instantaneous exchange of information. Globalisation could lead to homogenisation of world cultures, or to hybridisation and multiculturalism” (O’Shaughnessy and Stadler 2012, p.458)
Globalisation began as early as the 15th and 16th century as trade was introduced and countries were connecting economically. “The nineteenth century saw the introduction of newspapers, the telegraph, and cable systems that enabled the formation of global communication networks. The twentieth century was a time of explosive growth in the media and communication industries as radio and television were popularised” (O’Shaughnessy and Stadler, 2012, p.458)
As technology has innovated and advanced over time, globalisation has continued to evolve. “The globalisation of communication is characterised by the following qualities: instantaneity, interconnectedness, interdependence, and a trend towards corporate mergers, and conglomeration” “Globalisation offers a sense of interconnectedness by facilitating interpersonal communication and the formation of communities and relationships across geographical, racial, religious and cultural barriers. People can feel a sense of interconnectedness through communication without physically being together” (O’Shaughnessy and Stadler, 2012, p.459). It is through these characteristics that globalisation can be defined.
The introduction of global cultural flows by Arjun Appadurai breaks down globalisation into five main categories; ethnoscapes, mediascapes, technoscapes, financescapes, and ideoscapes.
The idea of ‘Imagined Communities’ reiterates Appadurai’s claim as Benedict Anderson says “It is imagined because the members of even the smallest nation will never know most of their fellow-members, meet them, or even hear of them, yet in the minds of each lives the image of their communion…in fact, all communities larger than the primordial villages of face-to-face contact (and perhaps even these) are imagined… it is imagined as a community, because, regardless of the actual inequality and exploitation that may prevail in each, the nation is always conceived as a deep horizontal comradeship’ (Anderson 1991).
Communication between the global world has been highly successful when it comes to the introduction of social media. Social media has created a medium to which people are able to instantly communicate across the globe to others. It has not only strengthened the relationship between individuals but has also allowed businesses to communicate better to their consumers. It has eliminated the need for face to face contact, and has allowed for more frequent communication. It has meant that communities across the globe can be connected through an instantaneous messaging system that improves the communication between individuals.
- Anderson, B 1991, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, Verso, London
- Appadurai, A 1996, ‘Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy’, Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis
- Denton, J.(2016). Globalisation – Where to Now? (Image) Available at: http://www.corrs.com.au/assets/expertise/secondary/jd-globalisation.jpg (Accessed 25 Aug. 2017).
- Terri Sent (n.d.) FOR STUDENTS – TERRI SENFT. (image) Available at: https://iO.wp.com/www.terrisenft.net/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/THINKING-GLOBALLY-JIRS-2017.008.jpeg?fit+1024%2C768 (Accessed 25 Aug. 2017)