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Media in Mauritius
Mauritius is well known in the African region for its democratic characteristics and social peace; these are reinforced by the way the media disseminate their information which is very crucial in such a multi ethnic society. In fact the first newspaper to be published in the African region was done in Mauritius (the printing machines are exposed in the photography museum of Port Louis) under the French rule. After the labourers brought onto the island got used to living in Mauritius and were free people, they produced their own newspapers namely the Chinese daily news (1932) by the Chinese and the Advance by the Indians (1939). As the level of literacy rose, more newspapers got published and today Mauritius boasts its understanding towards both public and private media. The national broadcasting service is the Mauritius Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) that provides for 3 main channels (mbc1, mbc2, mbc3). In 2005, the MBC launched the Terrestrial Digital Television (TDT) offering 3 more analogical channels and 6 numerical ones. There is also the TNT that broadcasts more channels to the pleasure of all Mauritians. Most programmes are in French or Creole with few in English; to promote cultural diversity, programmes concerned with all the ethnic communities on the island are offered (Hindu, Muslim, Telegu, Marathi, Chinese etc). The MBC also hoists the national radio station on the island. Ever since the government liberalised the broadcasting system, three private radio stations have emerged namely Radio Plus, Radio 1 and Top FM. These are very important as mass media communication means as most Mauritians always have their radios turned on all day long. Most of the programmes are in French, Creole and Hindi and there are live interventions from all sorts of people (Ministers, heads of big businesses etc) making the programmes quite interactive and interesting. Radio France Internationale (RFI) also broadcasts on the island. In terms of newspapers, there are quite a number of presses on the island ranging from daily papers to weekly ones. Amongst the daily ones are L’Express, Le Mauricien, Le Matinal; in the category of weekly ones are Weekend, Le Defi, Samedi Plus, Le Dimanche. All the newspapers are basically written in French with few articles in English; News on Sunday is the only newspaper written wholly in English. Information concerning local events, actualities, politics, cinema etc can be read and some newspapers even offer kids’ corners. Other media include Mauritian magazines such as Panorama which are obtained free with some newspapers or private magazines such as Essentielle. Today though, it is trendy to find most of the newspapers and radio broadcasts online thus making them more accessible worldwide.