A critical analysis of media professionalism in Kenya
This study seeks to identify and critically interrogate the factors that impede professionalism in Kenyan media. Based on the previous literature on related studies, the study critically reviews several thematic areas, such as political interference, obsession with economic returns, media ownership, journalism training, audience perspective, personnel factor and poor pay. The study is guided by the libertarian theory of the press and social responsibility theory. It perceives professionalism in two broad perspectives, namely the independence of the media practitioners to exercise their skills without interference from internal and external factors as well as responsibility to societal needs. Its findings are based on information obtained from media practitioners and stakeholders purposively identified to provide first hand information on challenges encountered in journalism practice. While the study confirmed factors identified in earlier studies as impediments to professionalism, it also focuses on the magnitude. Poor pay and poor training are the most prominent factors. The study also found out that tribalism is one of the emerging issues in media practice.