ABSTRACT

In order to understand how the globalization of television production and distribution has developed and assumed the ever more intensive and complex forms it has today, it is necessary, though not sufficient, to take language and culture into account as primary “market forces” which enable the major producers and distributors of television programs and services to gain access to markets outside their nations of origin. In this context, it becomes helpful to discard the metaphor of the "worlds" which share a common language in favor of the concept of “geolinguistic region.” Such regions have been the initial basis for the globalization of the media, notably in television programs and services. It should be emphasized that a geolinguistic region is defined not necessarily by its geographical contours, but more in a virtual sense, by commonalities of language and culture. Most characteristically, these have have been established by historical relationships of colonization, as is the case with English, Spanish, and Portuguese. However, in the age of international satellites, not only do former colonies counterinvade their erstwhile masters with television entertainment, but geolinguistic regions also come to include perhaps quite small, remote and dispersed pockets of users of particular languages, most often where there have been great diasporic population flows out of their original countries, such as Indians now living in the Gulf States, Britain, and North America, or the unique case of the Spanish-speaking minorities of diverse origin who inhabit the US.