Tromso, Norway — iTromsø (Case Study)
The “World Press Freedom Index” indicates that Norway is ranked number one in the world press freedom index in front of Sweden and Finland (“2016 World Press Freedom Index | Reporters Without Borders.”). This does not surprise me as Norway is consistently ranked high on many global scales including overall adventure, citizenship, quality of life, and overall happiness (“Norway Ranks Among the World’s Best Countries.”) Norway is a great place to live. The government in Norway passed “The Media Ownership Act” in 1997 (Local, The. “Norway ‘almost Flawless’ for Press Freedom.”) This law forbids any significantly large media agency from owning more than 40 percent of any shares in any tv station, radio station, or newspaper. This media ownership act allows local news organizations to share 60 percent of the news (on average) that citizens in Norway hear or read. This plays a significant role in Norway’s top position on the “World Press Freedom Index”. For the government to maintain national diversity as well as local competition newspapers are subsidized (Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.”). The subsides from the government account for around 3 percent of the newspaper’s revenue in Norway. Norway has a very high standard of living thanks to its abundance of oil plants, gas plants, and countless fisherman as it resides bordering the coast of the Atlantic Ocean (Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.”). Norway has constantly rejected to be a part of the European Union, so it is its own country that can make its own laws, regulations, and currency (Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.”). There is a high level of literacy in the country of Norway. The first newspapers in Norway were established in the year of 1760, but it had taken nearly 100 years for the newspapers to be circulated around the country and read on a widespread level. The country of Norway still reads about the same amount as they did 100 years ago. The number of newspapers in circulation have remained generally constant (Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.”). The focus of newspapers have significantly changed over the years in Norway. The country went from the newspapers covering mostly politics to widespread commercial focuses (Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.”). This is very prevalent when searching through newspapers in Norway. The papers and their respective websites seem to not discuss a significant amount of political issues or achievements, but they instead seem to advertise amenities, attractions, and general positive news about the local communities or country.
The city of Tromsø is in the country of Norway, and it resides around 200 miles north of the arctic circle. Leibowitz states that Tromsø has extremely low seasonal depression rates (Leibowitz, Kari. “The Norwegian Town Where the Sun Doesn’t Rise.). This is an important fact because Tromsø is located so far north, so during the winter, the sun is only out for less than an hour. As we know, people need natural sunshine to aid in their quality of life, but Tromsø has found a way to inject constant positivity into its society.
This sense of positivity in Tromsø may be partly because of their local newspaper “iTromsø”. “iTromso” was first founded in the year of 1898 (“Tromsø | Newspaper Ranking & Review.”). This news organization is both available via print and on their subscription-based website. According to www.iTromso.com, the subscription is monthly based and costs around 99.00 kroner every two months which translates to around $14.00 USD with the current exchange rate. “iTromso” helps to inject positivity into the community of Tromsø by only reporting on positive news that is either local or national. When people read these articles on this news organization’s website or on their newspapers; people in Norway or people that are connected to Norway in some way are proud of either their city, country, or nationality. The news organization promotes local and national news that puts a positive perspective into people’s lives. The online presence of “iTromso” is extremely good. Both the actual news organization has a strong social media presence as well as all its employees including Trond Haakensen (Jakobsen, Stig, Trond Haakensen, and Liv Brandvoll. “Få ITromsø Pluss I to Mnd. for Kun 99,-.” ) (Haakensen, Trond. “Trond Haakensen (@trondhaak).”). The newspaper organization posts all of their articles on their social media, and the employees of the organization post on their social media as well.
The website at www.iTromsø.no has a strictly news section, a sports section, a feedback section, and an opinions section. The feedback section contains many different album and concert reviews, interviews, and comments. The opinions section includes mostly debate related articles. It is a section in the newspaper that allows people to argue their opinions. The news section entails news articles that are mainly local to Tromsø and are generally positive and non-political articles.
Haakensen, Trond. “Trond Haakensen (@trondhaak).” Twitter. Twitter, 05 Apr. 2017. Web. <https://twitter.com/trondhaak>.
Jakobsen, Stig, Trond Haakensen, and Liv Brandvoll. “Få ITromsø Pluss I to Mnd. for Kun 99,-.” Itromso.no. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://www.itromso.no/>.
Leibowitz, Kari. “The Norwegian Town Where the Sun Doesn’t Rise.” The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 01 July 2015. Web. <https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2015/07/the-norwegian-town-where-the-sun-doesnt-rise/396746/>.
Local, The. “Norway ‘almost Flawless’ for Press Freedom.” The Local. The Local, 20 Apr. 2016. Web. <https://www.thelocal.no/20160420/norway-almost-flawless-for-press-freedom>.
“Norway Ranks Among the World’s Best Countries.” U.S. News & World Report. U.S. News & World Report, n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2017. <https://www.usnews.com/news/best-countries/norway>.
Østbye, Helge. “Norway — Media Landscape.” European Journalism Centre (EJC). N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2017. <http://ejc.net/media_landscapes/norway>.
“Trond Haakensen.” Facebook. N.p., n.d. Web. <https://www.facebook.com/trondhaak>.
“Tromsø | Newspaper Ranking & Review.” 4 International Media & Newspapers. N.p., n.d. Web.. <http://www.4imn.com/reviews/16234.htm>.
“70 Interesting Facts about Norway.” Interesting Facts. N.p., n.d. Web. <https://www.factretriever.com/norway-facts>.
“2016 World Press Freedom Index | Reporters Without Borders.” RSF. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2017. <https://rsf.org/en/ranking>.