World Press Encyclopedia: A Survey of Press Systems Worldwide ( TWO VOL. SET )
by Amanda C. Quick
Twenty-one years after publication of the first edition, this completely revised work contains articles on the press and media in 232 countries and territories. Arranged alphabetically by country, entries generally cover the history of the Fourth Estate, press laws, economic framework, censorship, attitudes toward foreign media, a chronology of significant recent events, and a bibliography. Several entries are illustrated with black-and-white graphs depicting Internet use, top-circulation newspapers, and the number of personal computers; basic country data are also included. Three appendixes provide comparative statistical rankings (newspaper circulation, television stations, radio sets, etc.); annotated listing of news associations and organizations; and a collection of regional maps. A unified author-subject index provides easy access to the contents of both volumes.Compiled by 80 contributors, the individual essays vary greatly in quality and length (200-30,000 words). For some smaller and less developed nations, such as Belize and Benin, the essays are quite short. Essays for countries where the press is strictly regulated, such as Cambodia, can also be skimpy. Two additional appendixes would have been helpful: a listing of the Web sites for major newspapers and a general bibliography listing guides, directories, and handbooks to the world press.World Press Encyclopedia is an excellent reference source providing concise information for material currently dispersed in numerous print and Web sources. Especially valuable is the bibliography at the end of each entry. The Ghana essay, for example, cites a wide variety of sources from American media publications to Ghanaian newspapers. Useful for students, scholars, and those seeking quick information, this unique source is recommended for public and academic libraries.