What is the Media Diversity Index?

This Media Diversity Index (MDI) is an online rating tool which provides a window into the diversity or lack thereof in South African media content on a range of parameters, including diversity of topics, sources, geographical coverage, as well as levels of original and recycled content. These series of indicators help us understand the state of our media diversity in a manner that we can assess and monitor performance over time and fashion out ways of improving.

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Why is it important?

Diversity is critical for democracy, especially in a society like South Africa where we have so much difference in almost every aspect of our society, from age, sexuality, and race, and nationality, language to people, space, religion and ethnicity. We also live in an unequal society in terms of wealth, resources and power. So how do our media perform in representing the diversity of our country?

How is it measured?

There are three different tools used to determine media diversity. By looking at all monitored content published on a daily basis we are able to tell the topics covered, places mentioned and sources accessed. We also track where news content originates and ends and thereby determine the amount of original and recycled content in our news.

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