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Computer Networks and the Emergence of Global Civil Society

Computer Networks and the
Emergence of Global Civil Society:
The Case of the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) 

Paper Presented at the Annual Conference of the 
Peace Studies Association
Boulder, CO February 28, 1992
Workshop on "How to Utilize Communications Networks for Peace Studies" 

Copyright 1992
by Howard H. Frederick, Ph.D.(1)

To be published in Globalizing Networks: Computers and International
Communication, eds. Linda Harasim and Jan Walls (Oxford, forthcoming)

WHEN IN THE COURSE OF HUMAN EVENTS it becomes possible to dissolve the
communication frontiers that have divided peoples one from another and to
assume among the Powers of the Earth the interdependent and balanced
communication relations to which the Development of Technology has entitled

WE HOLD THESE TRUTHS TO BE SELF-EVIDENT, that all human communicators are
created equally, endowed with certain Unalienable Rights, among them the
right to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart
information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. The
Right to Communicate includes the right to be informed and well as to
inform, the right to reply as well as to listen, the right to be addressed
as well as to speak and the right for communication resources to satisfy
human social, economic and cultural needs. 

THAT TO SECURE THESE RIGHTS, a global computer communications network has
now arisen benefiting the Common Good of Humankind by loosing the bonds of
the marketplace and the strictures of government on the media of
communications and allowing that part of human endeavor known as global
civil society to communicate outside the barriers imposed by commercial or
governmental interests. 


These are possible opening lines of what might be called a Charter of
Communication Interdependence of the global nongovernmental movements for
peace, human rights and environmental preservation. The growth of such
global interdependent communication relations has been greatly accelerated
by the advent of decentralizing communication technologies such as computer
networking. Global civil society as represented by the "NGO Movement"
(nongovernmental organizations) now represents a force in international
relations, one that circumvents hegemony of markets and of governments.
This paper outlines the concept of global civil society and the NGO
Movement, describes the obstacles that they face from governments and
transnational corporations, and sketches the emergence of the Association
for Progressive Communications network as an illustration of this worldwide


What we call "community" used to be limited to face-to-face dialogue among
people in the same physical space, a dialogue that reflected mutual
concerns and a common culture. For thousands of years, people had little
need for long-distance communication because they lived very close to one
another. The medieval peasant's entire life was spent within a radius of no
more twenty-five miles from the place of birth. Even at the beginning of
our century, the average person still lived in the countryside and knew of
the world only through travelers' tales. 

Today, of course, communications technologies have woven parts of the world
together into an electronic web. No longer is community or dialogue
restricted to a geographical place. With the advent of the fax machine,
telephones, international publications, and computers, personal and
professional relationships can be maintained irrespective of time and
place. Communication relationships are no longer restricted to place, but
are distributed through space. Today we are all members of many global
"non-place" communities.

In the last decade there has emerged a new kind of global community, one
that has increasingly become a force in international relations. We speak
of the emergence of a global civil society, that part of our collective
lives that is neither market nor government but is so often inundated by them. Still somewhat inarticulate and flexing its muscles,
global civil society is best represented in the global "NGO Movement,"
nongovernmental organizations and citizens advocacy groups uniting to fight
planetary problems whose scale confound local or even national solutions.
Previously isolated from one another, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs)
are flexing their muscles at the United Nations and other world forums as
their power and capacity to communicate increase.

The concept of civil society arose with John Locke, the English philosopher
and political theorist. It implied a defense of human society at the
national level against the power of the state and the inequalities of the
marketplace. For Locke, civil society was that part of civilization--from
the family and the church to cultural life and education--that was outside
of the control of government or market but was increasingly marginalized by
them. Locke saw the importance of social movements to protect the public
sphere from these commercial and governmental interests.

>From the industrial age to the present, mercantilist and power-political
interests pushed civil society to the edge. In most countries, civil
society even lacked its own channels of media communication. It was
speechless and powerless, isolated behind the artifice of national
boundaries, rarely able to reach out and gain strength in contact with
counterparts around the world. What we now call the "NGO Movement" began in
the middle of the last century with a trickle of organizations and has now
become a flood of activity. Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) today
encompass private citizens and national interest groups from all spheres of
human endeavor. Their huge increase in number and power is due in no small
measure to the development of globe-girdling communications

As Dutch social theorist Cees J. Hamelink has written, we are seeing a new
phenomenon emerging on the world scene--global civil society, best
articulated by the NGO movement.(3) New communications technologies now
facilitate communication among and between the world's national civil
societies, especially within the fields of human rights, consumer
protection, peace, gender equality, racial justice, and environmental
protection. >From Earth Summit to GATT, from the United Nations General
Assembly to the Commission on Human Rights, NGOs have become the most
important embodiment of this new force in international relations.

The development of communications technologies has vastly transformed the
capacity of global civil society to build coalitions and networks. In times
past, communication transaction clusters formed among nation-states,
colonial empires, regional economies and alliances--for example, medieval
Europe, the Arab world, China and Japan, West African kingdoms, the
Caribbean slave and sugar economies. Today new and equally powerful forces
have emerged on the world stage--the rain forest protection movement, the
human rights movement, the campaign against the arms trade, alternative
news agencies, and planetary computer networks.


The continued growth and influence of global civil society face two
fundamental problems: increasing monopolization of global information and
communication by transnational corporations; and the increasing disparities
between the world's info-rich and info-poor populations. Global computer
networking makes an electronic "end-run" around the first problem and
provides an appropriate technological solution to overcome the second.

Hamelink observed that the very powers that obstructed civil society at the
national level--markets and governments--also con- trolled most of the
communication flows at the global level. Government monopolies still
control a huge share of the world's air waves and telecommunications flows.
Even worse, a handful of immense corporations now dominate the world's mass
media. If present trends continue, Bagdikian predicted, by the turn of the
century "five to ten corporate giants will control most of the world's
important newspapers, magazines, books, broadcast stations, movies, recordings and
videocassettes."(4) Telecommunications infrastructures and data networks
must also be included in this gloomy account. Today's "lords of the global
village" are huge corporations that "exert a homogenizing power over ideas,
culture and commerce that affects populations larger than any in history.
Neither Caesar nor Hitler, Franklin Roosevelt nor any Pope, has commanded
as much power to shape the information on which so many people depend to
make decisions about everything from whom to vote for to what to eat."(5) 

Why is this happening? The most fundamental reason is that fully integrated
corporate control of media production and dissemination reaps vast profits
and creates huge corporate empires. Already more than two-thirds of the
U.S. work force is now engaged in information-related jobs.(6) Almost half
the Gross National Product of the 14 most industrialized countries, and
one-quarter of all international trade, comes from services.(7)
Telecommunications services grew by 800 percent worldwide in the 1980s.
According to Unesco, the total world information and communication economy
in 1986 was $1,185 billion, about 8 to 9 percent of total world output, of
which $515 billion was in the United States.(8) Growth in this sector is
accelerat- ing and it is no surprise that a few large corporations now
predominate in the world's information flow. While there are more than one
hundred news agencies around the world, only five--Associated Press, United
Press International, Reuters, Agence France Presse, and TASS--control about
ninety-six percent of the world's news flows.(9) Such corporations as
Sears, IBM, H&R Block, and Lockheed control the bulk of the videotex
information markets.

In addition to transnational control of information, global civil society
and the NGO movements confront the increasing gap between the world's
info-rich and info-poor populations. In virtually every medium, the
disparities are dramatic. 

Ninety-five percent of all computers are in the developed countries.

While developing countries have three-quarters the world's population, they
can manage only thirty percent of the world's newspaper output.

About sixty-five percent of the world's population experiences an acute
book shortage.

Readers of the New York Times consume more newsprint each Sunday than the
average African does in one year. 

The only Third World country to meet Unesco's basic media standards for per
capita numbers of newspapers, radio, and cinema is Cuba.

Only seventeen countries in the world had a Gross National Product larger
than total U.S. advertising expenditures. 

The United States and Commonwealth of Independent States, with only 15
percent of the world's population, use more than 50 percent of the
geostationary orbit. The Third World uses less than 10 percent.

Ten developed countries, with 20 percent of the world's population,
accounted for almost three-quarters of all telephone lines. The United
States had as many telephone lines as all of Asia; the Netherlands, as many
as all of Africa; Italy, as many as all of Latin America; Tokyo as many as
all of Africa.(10)

Even within the United States we have the info-rich and the info-poor. From
the streets of Manhattan to the barrios of Los Angeles, from the homeless
to the immigrants populations, from Appalachia to the inner cities, there
are millions upon millions of our fellow Americans who cannot read or type,
do not have access to computers, do not consume newsprint, cannot afford a


To counter these twin trends that threaten to engulf civil society with a
highly controlled of commercialization, there has arisen a worldwide
metanetwork of highly decentralized technologies--computers, fax machines,
amateur radio, packet data satellites, VCRs, video cameras and the like.
They are "decentralized" in the sense that they democratize information
flow, break down hierarchies of power, and make communication from top and
bottom just as easy as from horizon to horizon. For the first time in
history, the forces of peace and environmental preservation have acquired the
communication tools and intelligence gathering technologies previously the
province of the military, government and transnational corporations. 

Many people, organizations and technologies are responsible for this
development, but one organization has distinguished itself by specializing
in the communication needs of the global NGO Movement. The history of the
Association for Progressive Communication (APC) dates back to 1984, when
Ark Communications Institute, the Center for Innovative Diplomacy,
Community Data Processing, and the Foundation for the Arts of Peace--all
located in the San Francisco Bay Area near Silicon Valley,
California--joined forces to create what was then called PeaceNet, the
world's first computer network dedicated exclusively to serve the needs of
the movements for peace, human rights and social justice. In 1987, PeaceNet
became a division of the San Francisco-based Tides Foundation, and the
Institute for Global Communications (IGC) was formed to direct and support
its activities.

Parallel to this, with seed money from Apple Computer and the San Francisco
Foundation, in 1982 the Farallones Institute created EcoNet to advance the
cause of planetary environmental protection and sustainability. Farallones
transferred EcoNet to the newly-formed Institute for Global Communications
in 1987. ConflictNet, dedicated to serving nonviolent conflict resolution,
dispute mediation and arbitration, joined IGC in 1990. Together, these
three networks--PeaceNet, EcoNet and Conflict--make up what we now refer to
as the IGC Networks, the largest computer system in the world dedicated to
peace, human rights and environmental preservation.

Inspired by the technological success of establishing these networks in the
United States, the Institute for Global Communications began collaborating
with a similar network in the United Kingdom, London-based GreenNet. To
raise funds, rock stars Little Steven and Peter Garbriel performed two
"Hurricane Irene" concerts in Tokyo in December 1986. Thus we can say that
the idea of a global network for peace, human rights, and the environment
was born in Peter Gabriel's New York hotel room in 1987 when the money was
distributed and the original charter was drafted on a laptop computer.

With this impetus, in 1987 GreenNet and the IGC Networks joined together
seamlessly demonstrating that transnational electronic communications could
serve the these communities. This transatlantic link was so successful
that, with the support of the MacArthur, Ford and General Service
foundations and the United Nations Development Program, IGC helped to
establish five more networks, in Sweden, Canada, Brazil, Nicaragua and
Australia. This quickly led in 1990 to the founding of the Association for
Progressive Communications (APC) to coordinate this global operation.
Today, more than 15,000 subscribers in 90 countries are fully
interconnected through low-cost personal computers and software provided
free of charge to APC partners. These groups constitute a veritable honor
role of nongovernmental organizations working in these fields, including
Amnesty International, Friends of the Earth, Oxfam, Greenpeace and many
labor unions.


APC members are fond of saying that they "dial locally and act globally."
Today, there are APC partner networks in the United States, Nicaragua,
Brazil, Russia, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Sweden and Germany
and affiliated systems in Uruguay, Costa Rica, Czechoslovakia, Bolivia,
Kenya and other countries (see "APC Network Topology"). The APC now even
has an affiliated network in Cuba and can boast of providing the first free
flow of information between the United States and Cuba in thirty years.
Dozens of FidoNet system connect with the APC through "gateways" located at
the main nodes. At the hub of this system is APC's largest computer, known
as "cdp" or Community Data Processing, located in Silicon Valley,

The APC Networks can now set up complete electronic mail and conferencing systems on small, inexpensive appropriate-technology microcomputers for
between $5,000 and $15,000 with software developed since 1984 and available
to partner systems at no charge. Individual users typically make a local
phone call to connect to their host machine, which stores up mail and
conference postings until contacted by a partner computer in the network,
typically about every two hours. Aside from its low cost, this
technological configuration is appropriate for countries whose
telecommunications infrastructure is still poor. The file transfer
protocols used between the computers have a high level of resiliency to
line noise and satellite delays, and if an interruption does occur, they
are able to resume a transfer right at the point it was interrupted. This
is particularly important for transporting large binary files, when the
chances of losing the connection over poor quality telephone lines is

Within the APC, main nodes at London (GreenNet), Stockholm (NordNet),
Toronto (Web) and San Francisco (IGC Networks) bring the communication flow
in from regional nodes. Messages are then exchanged and distributed around
the world so that a message from Australia can end up on a screen in
Estonia in two to four hours. Messages can be sent through these machines
to outbound fax and telex servers, to commercial hosts such as Dialcom and
GeoNet, and to academic networks such as Janet, BitNet, EARN, and
UseNet/UUCP. The entire network is funneled on to the Internet through the
IGC Networks, which are a full Internet host ( The price is low by
any standard; in the United States hourly connect charges range as low as
$3 per hour. 

Simply put, electronic mail (or "email") connects two correspondents
through a computer and a modem to a "host" computer. One user, let's say a
peace researcher in Finland, uses her computer to dial into a local data
network (analogous to the telephone network but for data traffic instead of
voice). She either types in a message or "uploads" a prepared text, into
her host computer, in this case, NordNet in Stockholm. Within a short time
that message is transferred via high-speed modems through the telephone
lines to the host system of her correspondent, a university peace studies
professor in Hawaii. His host system is the PeaceNet computer in
California. At his convenience, he connects to his host and "downloads" the
message. This miraculous feat, near instantaneous communication across half
the globe, costs each user only the price of a local phone call plus a
small transmission charge.

Unlike systems used by the large commercial services, the APC Networks are
highly decentralized and preserve local autonomy. One microcomputer serves
a geographical region and is in turn connected with other "nodes." The
local node collects the international mail, bundles and compresses it, then
sends it to the appropriate foreign messaging system for distribution using
a special high-speed connection.

In addition to email, the APC Networks also oversee about 900 electronic
"conferences"--basically a collective mailbox open to all users--on
subjects from AIDS to Zimbabwe. It is here that people can publicize
events, prepare joint proposals, disseminate vital information and find the
latest data. APC conferences carries a number of important alternative news
sources, including Inter Press Service (the Third World's largest news
agency); Environmental News Service (Vancouver), the United Nations
Information Centre news service ; Agencia Latinoamericana de Informacion
(Ecuador, in Spanish); Alternet (Washington, DC); Moscow News (Russia, in
English); New Liberation News Service (Cambridge, MA); Pacific News Service
(San Francisco, CA); World Perspectives Shortwave Monitoring Service
(Madison, WI); and Yugofax Information Services (London).


The first large-scale impact of these decentralizing technologies on
international politics happened in 1989. When the Chinese government
massacred its citizens near Tianamen Square, Chinese students transmitted
the most detailed, vivid reports instantly by fax, telephone and computer networks to activists throughout the
world. They organized protests meetings, fundraising, speaking tours and
political appeals. Their impact was so immense and immediate that the
Chinese government tried to cut telephone links to the exterior and started
to monitor the Usenet computer conferences where much of this was taking

Another example is the 1991 Gulf War, where computer networks such as
PeaceNet and its partner networks in the APC exploded with activity. While
mainstream channels of communication were blocked by Pentagon censorship,
the APC Networks were carrying accurate reports of the effects of the Gulf
War on the Third World, Israel and the Arab countries and the worldwide
anti-war movement. For a movement caught off- guard, amazingly smooth
coordination took place rapidly across the country and the world. Competing
groups agreed on common platforms, set synchronized action dates, and
planned large-scale events across vast distances. Computerists seized the
technology and made it work.

During the attempted coup in the Soviet Union in August 1990, the APC
partners used telephone circuits to circumvent official control. Normally,
the outdated Russian telephone system requires hordes of operators to
connect international calls by hand, and callers must compete fiercely for
phone lines. But the APC partner networks found other routes for data flow.
While the usual link with Moscow is over international phone lines, APC
technicians also rigged a link over a more tortuous route. That plan saw
Soviet news dispatches gathered through a loose network of personal
computer bulletin board systems in Moscow and Leningrad. The dispatches
which were sent by local phone calls to the Baltic states, then to NordNet
Sweden, and then to London-based GreenNet, which maintains an open link
with the rest of the APC.

Later this year, the Association for Progressive Communications will play a
major role in providing communications services for environmentalists,
non-governmental organizations and citizen activists before, during, and
after the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment at Development
(UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The largest United Nations conference in
history, UNCED is the first global gathering on the environment since 1972.
It is also the first global summit to take place fully within the age of
the NGO and computer technologies. APC maintains over 30 electronic
conferences on UNCED documents, agendas, reports, discussion and debate.
This information sharing service allows official UN documents to be
accessible to citizens around the world, thus providing broader citizen
participation in a heads-of-state summit than has ever been possible
before. APC's Brazilian member network, AlterNex, was chosen to spearhead
communications services for non-governmental organizations at UNCED itself.

Around the globe, other APC networks are working on issues of peace, social
justice, and environmental protection. In Australia, the members of the
Pegasus network are working to hook up the affluent 18 percent of the
electorate that votes Green, which would make the party more powerful. Back
in the United States, EcoNet is helping high school students monitor water
quality in local rivers. One such experiment involved 50 students along the
Rouge River in Michigan. When in 1991 neo-Nazi skinheads ransacked a
Dresden neighborhood populated by foreigners, users of the German partner
network ComLink posted news of the event. Soon Dresden newspapers were
flooded with faxes from around the world deploring the action. All in all,
tens of thousands of messages a day pass back and forth within the "APC
village," and the number grows every day. 


The partner networks of the Association for Progressive Communications have
built a truly global network dedicated to the free and balanced flow of
information. The APC Charter mandates its partners to serve people working
toward "peace, the prevention of warfare, elimination of militarism,
protection of the environment, furtherance of human rights and the rights of peoples, achievement of social and economic
justice, elimination of poverty, promotion of sustainable and equitable
development, advancement of participatory democracy, and nonviolent
conflict resolution."

The APC Networks are trying to make an "end-run" around the information
monopolies and to construct a truly alternative information infrastructure
for the challenges that lie ahead. By providing a low-cost, appropriate
solution for nongovernmental organizations and poor countries, they are
attempting to civilize and democratize cyberspace.

We are moving into a "new world order." The age of democracy may have had
its beginnings in the French and the American revolutions, but only today
is it finally reaching the hearts and minds of sympathetic populations
around the world. This "preferred" world order of democratic change depends
heavily on the efficiency of communication systems. 

Perhaps the most durable impact of the APC Networks is their promotion of
that illusive phenomenon known as "world public opinion." One way that we
can confirm the ascendance of global civil society is to examine the
accumulating evidence for world public opinion, a cosmopolitan convergence
of interactively communicating national civil societies. The MacBride
Report observed that world public opinion is "still in the process of
formation, and thus fragile, heterogeneous, easily abused."(12) As we
approach the third millennium, communications technologies such as the
Association for Progressive Communication (APC) networks are transforming
international relations. They have greatly accelerated the rise of global
civil society and the NGO Movement. Not only do they report violations and
victories of human rights; they are also demonstrating that communication
and information are central to human rights and to the emergence of
democratic, decentralized planet-loving movements. 


(1) Permission to reprint granted individually by author. Howard H.
Frederick has taught communications and international relations for more
than a decade. Recently he was Fulbright Professor of Communication at the
University of Salzburg in Austria. Previously he taught at Ohio University,
Mary Baldwin College, San Francisco State University, and California State
University. The author of Global Communication and International Relations
(Brooks-Cole, 1992) and Cuban-American Radio Wars (Ablex, 1986) and
numerous articles, he has lectured and worked in Europe and Latin America.
Frederick was formerly Director of PeaceNet and currently directs news
services at the Institute for Global Communications, a worldwide computer
network based in San Francisco, California. He is President of the
International Communication Section of the International Association for
Mass Communication Research (IAMCR/AIERI). He also serves in an advisory
capacity with the Center for Media and Values in Los Angeles, and Radio for
Peace International in Costa Rica. He lives in Los Angeles and works in San
Francisco, commuting across California weekly by airplane.

(2) International Encyclopedia of Communications, s.v. "International
Organi- zations," by Hamid Mowlana. See also Union of International
Associations, Yearbook of International Organizations, 1987-88 (Munich:
K.G. Saur, 1987), Volume 1, Appendix 7, Table 4.

(3) Cees J. Hamelink, "Global Communication: Plea for Civil Action," in
Informatics in Food and Nutrition, B. V. Hofsten, ed. (Stockholm: Royal
Academcy of Sciences, 1991), pp. 5-8.

See also "Communication: The Most Violated Human Right," Inter Press
Service dispatch, May 9, 1991, below.

amsterdam, may 9 (ips) -- the most violated human right in the world today
is the right to freedom of expression, cees hamelink, head of the
international association for mass communication research, argued here

speaking at a seminar on 'communication, democracy and development',
hamelink said that when channels for expression were left in the hands of
those who control either the state or the market, ''we have lost our
freedom of speech''.

''nothing less than a revolt of the communications clients against the forces
that keep us ignorant is needed,'' he argued.

''if any company had begun to produce the kind of sub- standard product
that cnn (cable news network) gave us day after day during the gulf war, we
would refuse to buy it,'' hamelink said.

both the state and the market had failed to provide cheap, reliable
information, and the opportunity for participation, he said.

the new social movements which had campaigned in other fields had only now
begun to realize that culture and information were too important to be left
to these two agencies, prof. hamelink stated.

for too long they were caught up in the atmosphere of powerlessness created
by the ubiquitous nature of media. 

two important elements had come into existence, he noted. the first was the
diverse forms of cheap information technology which could be used by
sufficiently skilled social movements.

the other was the increasing awareness around the world that values need to
be defended. ''there is less trust in political systems at present than
there was in the social movements of the 60s and 70s.

''then, they believed that if they tried to grab some of the power of the
state, they could change society. but today, their consciousness is
different. they are more wary of the state.''

hamelink argued that the gulf war would further this process. ''it was an
enormous demonstration of the deliberate use of disinformation and
propaganda,'' he said. 

the issue of communication had been overlooked in the development debate
because it was much more personal and individual and more difficult to
mobilize people around. 

halle hansen, head of the norwegian development agency, norad, provided
evidence for this view from experience in india and africa.

he said that the failure of democracy and development efforts in africa was
the direct result of the lack of communication and information on that

''the contrasts between the two regions is startling,'' he said. ''in
india, you have about 20,000 non-governmental organizations. there are
about 20,000 functioning newspapers and periodicals there, leading to a
fantastic plurality in the society.''

hansen rejected arguments that the mass media have ever been an agent for
social change. ''they were propelled to take up issues such as environment
and peace by the social movements,'' he argued. ''they have always been the
partner of the establishment.''

but roberto savio, director-general of inter press service (ips), warned
that the issue of information and communication was slowly and steadily
disappearing from the development debate.

ministries of information were disappearing all over the third world, he
said. governments felt that to touch the issue of information was

the state was no longer investing in information and communication
infrastructure. there was no longer any discussion of communication policy.

this, he revealed, was also happening at the level of the international
donor agencies. only 0.4 percent of development aid was devoted to
communications development. 

new publications on development fail to make any mention of the issue of

''at the same time, newspapers are shrinking in the third world,'' savio
stated. ''the prevailing theory is that the market place will put
everything in order, with the formula that the united states will teach the
world how to develop itself.''

this was creating serious distortions in the south, he warned.

(4) Ben Bagdikian, "The Lords of the Global Village," The Nation, June 12,
1989, p. 805.

(5) Ben H. Bagdikian, "The Lords of the Global Village," The Nation, June
12, 1989, p. 807.

(6) "U.S. International Communication and Information Policy," Gist
(Depart- ment of State), December 1988, p. 1.

(7) Meheroo Jussawalla, "Can We Apply New Trade Rules to Information
Trade?" in International Information Economy Handbook, eds. G. Russell Pipe
and Chris Brown (Springfield, VA: Transnational Data Reporting Service,
1985), p. 11. 

(8) Unesco, World Communication Report (Paris: Unesco, 1990), p. 83. 

(9) Sources: Hamid Mowlana, Global Information and World "Communication:
New Frontiers in International Relations (New York: Longman, 1986), p. 28;
International Journalism Institute, The Mass Media in the World, 1987, p.
40, citing World Communication Report (draft), UNESCO, 1988, p. 1.54; World
Commu- nication Report (Paris: UNESCO, 1989), pp. 136-141. 

There are more than one hundred news agencies around the world, yet five
transnational news agencies controlled about ninety-six percent of the
world's news flows.


17.000 Associated Press (AP)
14.000 United Press International (UPI)
4.000 TASS
1.500 Reuters
1.000 Agence France Presse (AFP)

.500 EFE (Spain)
.300 Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (Italy) .115 Deutsche Presse
Agentur (Germany)
.150 Inter Press Service (Rome, New York) .100 Non-Aligned News Pool
.075 Telegrafska Agencia Nova Jugoslavya (Tanjug) .025 Caribbean News
.020 Pan African News Agency
.018 Gulf News Agency

Source: World Communication Report (Paris: UNESCO, 1989), pp. 136-141;
Draft World Communication Report (Paris: UNESCO, 1988), p. 1.54. 

(10) Howard H. Frederick, Global Communications and International Relations
(Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks-Cole, 1992), chapter on "The Dimensions of
Global Communication.

(11) John S. Quarterman, The Matrix: Computer Networks and Conferencing
Systems Worldwide (Bedford, MA: Digital Press, 1990), pp. xxiii-xxiv. 

(12) International Commission for the Study of Communication Problems
[MacBride Commission], One World, Many Voices (Paris: Unesco, 1980), p.

Howard Frederick
Institute for Global Communications
18 De Boom Street
San Francisco, CA 94107


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