Migration and Media
Author: Mariam Gersamia
This chapter discusses the influence of media and other means of communication on migratory processes, migrants perception in the society and migrants’ themselves. Researchers agree that “migration narrative” determines attitudes towards migrants, forms stereotypes, and strengthens media stigmas. It is noteworthy to highlight the peculiarities of portrayal of migrants as a minority group in media and media effects, which is characteristic and typical for many media sets in different countries, however, researches in this field are innovation in Georgian context. Further, discussion of migration issues is noteworthy in light of ethics and journalistic standards. Media – be that traditional or social media – often is an important source of information for migrants, including potential migrations. It presents conditions of life in destination countries, social, economic and cultural situation in these countries, and can also serve as a pull factor for a person to migrate to the specific country or region. Therefore, this area of media influence will be also discussed in this chapter. Taking the above mentioned into account, this chapter will cover: 1. General analysis of influence of media on migration processes 2. Review of the images created by media regarding migrants and the society’s perceptions on migration processes in different countries; 3. Media as a source of information for migrants themselves; 4. Media and migration nexus in Georgia. Two cases studies are presented at the end of the chapter for further discussion (situation analysis), which caught the attention of media and were broadly covered in Georgia and internationally. These are: a case of mass deportation of ethnic Georgians from Russia in 2006 (1) and media coverage of Indian farmers’ immigration to Georgia (2).