With the accelerating pace of globalization and widespread influence, the importance of international communication has been highlighted. The report of the 19th Party Congress proposed that we will improve our capacity for engaging in international communication so as to tell China's stories well, present a true, multi-dimensional, and panoramic view of China, and enhance our country's cultural soft power.
Nowadays, the scope of communication between countries has been expanded and exchange channels have been enriched. Official voices and folk voices have been expanded through the Internet, the dissemination of which covers political, economic, cultural, scientific and technical aspects. With China's economic development and rising international status, China has received more and more international attention. On the one hand, some countries have explored and studied China's development models and concepts. On the other hand, the international community also has many misunderstandings about China. Therefore, improving the international communication capabilities and actively shaping the positive national image is a practical need to improve the country's cultural soft power. In the age of the Internet, new media has become a new tool for dissemination, and traditional media are also actively innovating. So traditional media and new media will jointly help international communication and build a national image. The national image is a comprehensive measure of a country’s evaluation in the public and its reputation in the international community. The construction and promotion of the national image are inseparable from the media’s dissemination. This is a long-term and arduous task involving selection of content and methods of dissemination, analysis and feedback on the audience, and innovation in the journalism and communication industry. This paper will use China Radio International as an example to analyze how China's online English media can achieve media integration and how to promote international communication, from the perspective of establishing a media image, the perspective of national cultural communication content, and the feedback of media audiences.
Key Words: international communication; national image; online media; CRI
1 Introduction 1
1.1 China’s Online English Media 1
1.2 China Radio International(CRI) 2
2 National Media Image, National Cultural Image and International Communication 4
2.1 Definition of National Media Image 4
2.2 Definition of National Cultural Image 5
2.3 Definition of International Communication 6
3 Relations between China’s National Image and International Communication 8
3.1 Concept of China’s National Image 8
3.2 Influences of International Communication on National Image 9
4 Analysis of CRI in International Communication 11
4.1 In Terms of National Media Image 11
4.2 In Terms of National Cultural Communication 12
4.3 In Terms of International Audiences’ Feedback 14
5 Effects of China’s Online English Media in International Communication 15
5.1 Development of Chinese Culture 15
5.2 Embodiment of Competitive Advantage and Soft Power 15
5.3 Promotion of International Cooperation and Mutual Benefits 16
6 Conclusion 18
Examining China’s Online English Media on Constructing the Nation’s Image in International Communication -A Case Study of China Radio International
1.1 China’s Online English Media
In the information age, new technologies and internet thinking have injected energy into the development of new media. Meanwhile, the world has been connected closely by globalization with regard to many aspects, such as international economics and trade, cross-cultural communication, international political issues. Our nation values the role of online media, as Xinhua News Agency reported, “Authorities will give support to mainstream media institutions in developing their websites and new media. It will step up efforts to guide and standardize investment in the Internet cultural sector with both state and private funds”（Xinhua News Agency,2017). Benefited by policy proposals, some traditional mass media have been undergoing the transformation and the convergence determined to improve the communication abilities of online websites and social networking. The efforts are made to form a system of international communication, the media organizations expand more fields and explore many ways. For example, like China Daily, Xinhua News, CGTN(China Global Television Network) and CRI, they own not only official sites and mass media, but also social media accounts and mobile apps.
Issued by the general offices of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the State Council, the outline for the 13th five-year program (2016-2020) on cultural development and reform aimed to gradually set up a modern communication system by 2020. The construction of modern communication system is inseparable from the coordination of new media, which serves as carriers to deliver a vast of information in the modern international communication. In the context of the network connecting people of all countries regardless of geographical factors, the effective use of online English media is expected to promote the influence of Chinese culture and the construction of nation’s image as well.
1.2 China Radio International(CRI)
CRI is the representative of national media, whose history can be dated back to 1941. It is China's only state-level radio and television media organization specializing in international communications. CRI aims to introduce China to the rest of the world, introduce the world to China, report global affairs to the world, and promote understanding and friendship between the Chinese and peoples from other countries. CRI has six overseas main regional bureaus and 32 overseas correspondent bureaus. It is a communication platform that incorporates the greatest number of communication means in China and includes the greatest number of language services among mainstream global media organizations(China Plus, 2017). Since cultures and languages are various in the world, the national media needs to attach great importance to regional difference. CRI uses 61 languages in its overseas reporting work and broadcasts a daily total of 2,700-plus programming hours. What’s more, CRI has nearly 70 overseas sites, dedicated affiliate radio stations and 18 global internet radio services, and receives 3 million pieces of audience feedback every year (China Plus,2017). The use of multiple languages improves the efficiency of communication. CRI is keeping its pace with times, which relays on solid basis of resources and support from high technology.
With the advantages of timeliness, interactivity, and diversity, the online media is playing an extensive role and influence in international communication. By analyzing online media, we can better understand the means and situation of news transmission as well as the media environment in the current era. CRI has already had newspaper, radio, television, Internet, and new media transmissions, including all forms from the first media to the fifth media. Thus, a multimedia development architecture with a fully-structured, well-equipped, traditional, and future-oriented model is beginning to take shape. The introduction of China to the world as part of the purpose of CRI is consistent with the direction in which this paper explores, that is, how English-language media can construct a national image. After all, analyzing the specific communication process and content of CRI will help us understand the role of the media from the perspective of deep communication and the perspective of international relations.
2 National Media Image, National Cultural Image and International Communication
2.1 Definition of National Media Image
The media image is the reflection of the media's performance and characteristics in the minds of the audience, and it is the audience's overall assessment of the media. A good image is the media's intangible assets and priceless treasure, which can increase the cohesion of the media, attract more attention and cooperation, and win the support of more audiences. The elements that make up the media image include various behaviors and identification features of the media.The audience’s overall assessment of the media is not emerged out of void, but based on the media’s performance and characteristics.
The media image is the unity of subjectivity and objectivity. In terms of subjectivity, the view of public is bound to be influenced by their own subjective factors, namely, the audience's own past experience, aesthetic orientation, motivation needs, and trade-offs with the media. But on the whole, the formation of the media image is still objective. According to the law of large numbers in statistics, there are many people involved in the evaluation, thus, subjective prejudice is naturally reduced.
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