How Journalists Sustain Their Autonomy under Ownership Change: A Case Study in Taiwan
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The purpose of this research is to explore how changes in the structure of the print media in Taiwan affect journalists’ autonomy, a key element of free speech in a democracy. The case of China Times faces the change of managerial practice and the formalization of control after the changes in ownership. This research attempts to examine how these changes influence journalists’ autonomy, and further clarify how journalists react to the change of their autonomy. To examine the problem, I interviewed seven journalists who work or have worked in China Times. In addition, I conducted the archival analysis based on interviewees’ blogs and the on-line publications of union at China Times. The results show that with change of managerial practice, which decreased journalists’ autonomy, there is a formalization of control. There were three different owners at China Times, each representing three work regimes: paternalist hegemony, market hegemony and subsidiary hegemonic despotism. The changes in ownership resulted in the formalization of control resulting in the break between managers and employees. This division resulted in journalists feeling less autonomous than before. Faced with less autonomy, journalists had to choose whether to stay or to exit.
Yeh, Yu-Chuan (2014). How Journalists Sustain Their Autonomy under Ownership Change: A Case Study in Taiwan. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from