- Media Environment Overview
- Media Outlet Preferences
- Regional Guide
- News and Information Access and Sharing
- Mobile Money for the Unbanked
- Public Opinion on MDGs
- HIV/AIDS Education: Survey Shows Demand for Better Information
- Malaria Education: Tapping All Means of Outreach
- Survey Methodology
Media Environment Overview
Summary (Click on tabs above for in depth analysis on each topic)
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There are close to 47 FM radio stations, 537 registered newspapers and a dozen television stations in Tanzania, as reported by Freedom House in 2010. The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) reports that there has been a definite increase in media outlets since the introduction of a multi-party democratic system of government in 1992. We profile those with access to the three dominant mass media – radio, television and newspapers. We also track those who regularly use mass media and look for signs of communal use of media.
- Radio access is fairly widespread throughout the country – making it the most consistently available medium for Tanzanians across income levels and locations.
- Income levels play a substantial role in determining household access to media devices other than radio. Household access to television more than triples between income tiers 3 and 4 highest).
- Computer and internet access at home is very limited across Tanzania. For mobile phones, 62 percent of Tanzanians reported having household access. This increases more gradually with each rising income tier.
- At the highest income tier, radio, television and mobile phone access become identical.
- Television viewership outside the home is an important factor: 27 percent have household access, 41 percent watch weekly.
- Communal watching is higher among those with lower tier incomes, and reduces as income levels increase. Rural viewers are more likely to watch TV outside their homes than urban viewers. The communal nature of TV viewing in many areas gives it wider reach than household ownership
- Rural residents and women are less likely to use mass media than their more urban and male counterparts.
Given the many sources available, it would seem that Tanzania has a varied media environment, with diverse and plural sources of information for all citizens. But some Tanzanians face significant obstacles in their access to information due to location of residence, income level and gender inequality. The African Media Barometer’s 2010 report on Tanzania says:
"Despite the relatively high number of newspapers, and radio and television stations in the country, media content largely fails to effectively meet the information, educational and entertainment needs of the various sectors of the population. As such, it is clear that Tanzania still lacks a diverse broadcasting sector essential to a functioning democracy that can contribute to the public interest."
It is thus equally useful to understand non-users -- such groups are often of interest to media development
practitioners, and our research can show who they are and what barriers to information access they face. For broadcast media such as radio and television, the unreliability of electricity and high costs of batteries hamper access for poorer Tanzanians. For another type of mass media – newspapers – poor circulation in remote areas, coupled with low literacy levels are formidable barriers.
Tanzania Africa Media Development Initiative with BBC- Report available at http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/trust/researchlearning/story/2006/12/0, 12
Tanzania Report 2010 African Media Barometer. Published by the Media
Institute of South Africa and FES Media Africa. Available here: http://www.misa.org/programme/mediamonitoring/AMB%20Tanzania%202010.pdf , pg 5
Freedom House – Freedom of the Press 2010 http://www.freedomhouse.org/template.cfm?page=251&year=2010&country=7931