In the African subcontinent, the media outlets in Zimbabwe have suffered a lot due to the governments. The governments used to impose strict media laws on them. Though the constitution of the country assures media freedom, often this is not available in the country for the government censorship and other issues. Besides, there is political crisis in the country which is also largely responsible for the failure of media outlets. Consequently, it is considered that the media outlets do not have a bright future like the neighboring countries. Hence, the media outlets are unable to shine in their respective areas.
A couple of media outlets, in the country, play the role of government’s watchdog. They always praise the government policies while they also oppose the other types of media outlets which do not have a positive attitude to the government. Besides, the government also provides subsidies to those media outlets for their survival. The other outlets are devoid of such privileges. This is also a way to establish control over the media outlets so that they do not go beyond the control of the government. And the journalists who violate the rules, especially the foreign journalist, are to pay a smart amount as fine.
Survival for the private media outlets is a bit harder than the state-run media outlets. There are several reasons for this. The most important thing is that the private outlets are to experience different hard conditions as they are critical to the government. Sometimes, they are to be accountable to the government as well for their actions. So, they are to struggle a lot for their existence in the country. In fact, holding the opposite view to the government is really a daunting task that the private media outlets are performing for a long time. Though they do not get government advertisement, they have a higher circulation. Moreover, to clamp down the overall criticisms, the government imposed draconian laws on them. As part of it, the journalists are not always willing to protest against the government.
Amid different types of media outlets, radio is the key source of entertainment and information for the local people. The other types of media outlets like television and newspapers are not so popular as radio stations are. In fact, access to radio outlets is easier than reading newspapers or watching television in the country. Besides, the readership of the newspapers is relatively lower. The lower literacy rate is largely responsible for this. It has grown a reluctance on the people. Sometimes, reading newspapers is considered as a luxury too. On the other side, radio listening has some special benefits. They can carry the radio receivers with them.
The overall media scenario did not have a very good climate in the past. The state-owned outlets were partisan. So, they frequently attacked the privately-owned outlets. In fact, they had the chances to attack the private media outlets as they were backed by the government. Besides, journalists from the other countries in Zimbabwe were also under serious pressures. They could not express freely and often were subject to be fiend if rules are violated. So, it was hard for them to continue journalism in the country. Slight changes have been made so far in the situations.
Around 13 newspapers are available in the country. Some of them are owned by the state while some others are private-run. Often the state-run newspapers provide some biased news and information for the readers while the private newspapers criticize the government and its policies. But they sometimes maintain the self-censorship issues.
The country has about 20 radio stations both in national and regional level. They broadcast a wide number of programs and events for the audience round the clock. They have their respective audiences who dedicatedly listen to the radio programs. The radio programs include a wide number of shows, news, and musical events. Radio has become the primary source of information for the people across the country. They do not have to worry about their survival as they have huge popularity.
Sixteen television stations are available in the country and they serve the nation. The television stations have their own contents to cater the needs of the people. Most of the television channels run news shows and entertaining events. Some of the television channels are termed as the mouthpiece of the government for their pro-government stance. However, the overall performance of the television channels is adorable.
The use of the internet is climbing in the present days. The local newspapers have their internet-based outlets. Besides, people also access the internet to have their social presence visible to the world.