The Ubiquity of the Media Mediation Model

Jannie Botes

Assistant Professor, Program on Negotiations and Conflict Management, University of Baltimore

Interviewed by Julian Portilla, 2003

This rough transcript provides a text alternative to audio. We apologize for occasional errors and unintelligible sections (which are marked with ???).

... People have said to me, "You know, yeah, but it's Nightline and Ted Koppel. There aren't many examples of that."

I really completely disagree with that and the reason I do... I have two reasons. One, the model of the journalist moderator sitting and interviewing two parties in a conflict is repeated a million times a day over the world, on radio, on television and it's also repeated in print in an indirect way. In print, you don't have the people it right in front of you, but in print you go to these people and say, you speak to party A, you speak to party B and then you call party A back and say well party B says such and such. So you can see that same dialectic between party A and B and how in a sense the journalist either pulled comparisons or huge differences between them. Maybe the big difference is that journalists and the media kind of thrive on differences whereas we as third parties and peacemakers and facilitators and mediators certainly thrive on trying to point out points of agreement in the facilitative model. Therefore the reason I think that it is really important to look at that way is that model is repeated everywhere, in small towns, in large towns, in radio, in TV, and I think the model exists in print as well.