The Road to Rio: Infrastructure, Image, and New Media
Bailey, Kyle Evan
MetadataShow full item record
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is currently in the midst of extraordinary period of mega-event hosting. Central to the preparation and hosting of such mega-events are the issues of infrastructure and image. While a large number of articles have been keen to illustrate the transformative potential (and dilemmas) of utilizing mega-events to advance an urban agenda, less understood is role that citizen journalists and traditional media journalists play in the construction of the "media geography" of mega-events. This research examines the dominant narratives in the international media coverage of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil before the 2014 FIFA World Cup, specifically the 12 months leading up to that event starting with the 2013 Confederations Cup Riots. Data was derived from a content analysis of 5 western, international media outlets, as well as interviews with international and new media journalists from the New York Times, BBC, Wall Street Journal, Associated Press, Midia NINJA, and several other media organizations. These journalists were questioned about the dominant media narratives, as well as the role of new media, not only in reporting news on the ground in Rio de Janeiro, but also in how their presence helped shape the media's representation of Rio and perhaps construct a new "point of reference" for the city. The results of the quantitative and qualitative data suggest a couple of clear narratives. The first questioned whether or not the event's infrastructure projects would be ready in time for the start of the games. The second focused on reporting of the protests in Rio de Janeiro and elsewhere, attempting to give meaning to protests and the array of grievances that sparked those demonstrations. Additionally, this research examined how traditional and new media journalists leveraged social media to mobilize and facilitate the various contestations of Rio de Janeiro's mega-events.
- Masters Theses