The media outlets in South Africa have a long and enriched history and also considered as one of the vibrant media outlets in the region. A remarkable number of outlets have their operation in the country and they are running the business without any notable obstruction. The media outlets of the country are serving the nation with a varied type of news and information. And the outlets are available in several languages. But the scenario was not the same earlier and even in the 90s, there were some issues with the media outlets. The number of media outlets was limited and there were restrictions on them.
The emergence of media outlets in large number appeared after 1994. The political scenario and the condition of the state created the demand of some prominent media outlets. Accordingly, the number of media outlets was increased and private initiatives were taken to establish the outlets. So, at present, the country has a remarkable number of state-run and privately run media outlets. They are running their operations inside the country without any troubles now.
Since this is a multicultural country, there are some unimaginative developments have taken place here. The rate of literacy is more here than the neighboring nations. The rate is about 90 percent for the white people living here while it is around 60 percent for the black people. So, the number of the readership of newspapers is more here than the other African nations. And the newspapers are published using over 10 languages. But English is the most popular here and the majority of the readers prefer their newspapers to be published in English. Besides, the Afrikaans is also used for the publications.
The media history of the country has several stages and they are mostly before and after apartheid stage. In fact, the scenario was different before the apartheid while it changed just the opposite after the apartheid. Fundamental changes have been brought on the media outlets and their operations. And even participation of people including black and white have been increased which was not seen before the apartheid period. The entire media environment has been reshaped. So, now the participation of white and black people on media is available more than the previous age.
But the changes were troublesome for some of the media people. Actually, a bunch of editors and journalists were unable to adjust to the changes. A couple of laws had appeared that disallowed the publishers of newspapers to publish certain news and information to some extent. In fact, the situation was like walking through a minefield during the apartheid period. Besides, the media outlets also required getting permission from the government to publish any certain news or information on the outlets. The issues of political interests and security were highly checked before the publication and they needed prior government permission as well.
Earlier, the issue of media censorship was prevalent in the country and the government used to control the media to many extents. Even, the other types of outlets had to experience the similar situation. Censorship was imposed on all types of media outlets. Even the government decided what the South Africans should watch or not view on television. It was the extreme level of censorship for a nation. But the days are gone now.
The country has over 100 newspapers and they are published across the country. Majority of the newspapers are published in the English language while the others are published using regional dialects. The newspapers mostly provide the generalized information for the readers. But they follow some rules while publishing the news and information. They care for the state-related news and information too much. And also censor the other sensitive issues.
Around 35 television channels are available in the country and they provide a good number of shows and programs for the audience nationwide. But the television contents are tightly monitored by an independent body. Besides, taking the license of television operation is harder now.
Over 150 radio stations are operating in the country. And they are located across the country. In fact, radio has become a strong mode of communication and primary source of information for the countrymen. The radio stations broadcast music, sports, current affairs and many more.
The use of the internet is also prevalent in the country and most of the people use it to know about the world and for meeting their social communication needs.