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Humanitarianism, Communications and Change

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Simon Cottle and Glenda Cooper

Humanitarianism, Communications and Change is the first book to explore humanitarianism in today’s rapidly changing media and communications environment. Based on the latest academic thinking alongside a range of professional, expert and insider views, the book brings together some of the most authoritative voices in the field today. It examines how the fast-changing nature of communications throws up new challenges but also new possibilities for humanitarian relief and intervention. It includes case studies deployed in recent humanitarian crises, and significant new communication developments including social media, crisis mapping, SMS alerts, big data and new hybrid communications. And against the backdrop of an increasingly globalized and threat-filled world, the book explores how media and communications, both old and new, are challenging traditional relations of communication power.

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Part Two: Cash, Charity, and Communication

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Cash, Charity, and Communication p a r t t w o c h a p t e r f i v e ‘Give us your ****ing money’ A Critical Appraisal of TV and the Cash Nexus glenda cooper At 3 pm on 13 July 1985, Bob Geldof, the organiser of Live Aid, burst out on live television: “People are dying NOW. Give us the money NOW…. F*** the address, give us the phone, here’s the number.” It was, in fact, the first time such an expletive had been used on such a ‘family friendly’ occasion (Franks, 2013) Geldof ’s swearing may have broken boundar- ies in taste terms—yet after this outburst, giving increased to £300 per second (Geldof, 2014). And Live Aid would, more important, come to symbolise the increasing importance of the cash nexus to the aid industry. Thirty years on, the relationship between rock-’n’-roll, charity, and money claimed the headlines in a very different way, when at the end of 2013 it emerged that the international NGO World Vision UK had paid Elizabeth McGovern (better known as the Countess of Grantham in TV series Downton Abbey) £28,000 to subsidise her band Sadie and the Hotheads, as part of a deal in which she would become an ambassador for the charity. In three decades we have moved from rock stars raising money for aid agencies to aid agencies paying money to rock stars to raise their profile. This chapter will deal with the increasing importance of the...

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