Building a Nation's Image on the World Wide Web: A Study of the Head of State Web Sites of Developing Countries

by T. Kenn Gaither

Table of Contents

List of Tables

List of Figures

Chapter 1: Introduction--Surveying The Cyberterrain Of Developing Country Head Of State Web Sites

Public Relations in Context: A Global Overview




Middle East


Chapter 2: Background

Public Relations and the World Wide Web


Government Relations


International Public Relations

The Case Study

Corporate Public Relations

Applying Western Theories around the Globe


Chapter 3: Public Relations, Propaganda, and Persuasion Theory

Explicating the Relationship between Public Relations, Propaganda, and Persuasion

Relevant Persuasion Theory and Theoretical Underpinnings of IPA Propaganda Devices


Research Questions and Hypotheses

Chapter 4: Methods of Study

Quantitative Method

Qualitative Method

Narrative Analysis and “Data Rich” Web Sites

Narrative Analysis Criteria

Chapter 5: Quantitative Content Analysis Results

Web Site Frequencies: Dialogic Functionality

Dialogic Function by Communication with Web Sponsors

Web Site Frequencies: Propaganda (neutral) and Impropaganda

Hypotheses Testing

Quantitative Content Analysis Summary

Chapter 6: Narrative Analysis Results

Describing the Typical Homepage

Summary of a “Typical” Homepage

Narrative Analysis Criteria

Country Overview: Philippines

Analysis of President Arroyo’s Homepage

Portraying PGMA

Web Site of Philippines President Arroyo

Identifying a PGMA Web Site Narrative: Language and Paronomasia

A U.S.-Centric Theme

Philippines Domestic Narrative

Summary of PGMA Web Site Emerging Narrative

Country Overview: Latvia

Analysis of Latvian President Freiberga’s Homepage

General Observations: Homepage of Latvian President Vaira Vike- Freiberga

Identifying a Latvian President Web Site Narrative

Legitimacy and Language

A Narrative of Assimilation

The Human Narrative

The President’s Family

Riga Castle’s Playground

A Game


Country Overview: Nigeria

Analysis of Nigerian President Obasanjo’s Homepage

General Observations: Homepage of Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo

Identifying a Nigerian Presidential Web Site Narrative: Achievement

President Obasanjo’s Comparative Strategy with Use of Two-Sided Messages

Open Storefront, Empty Shelves

Summary: The Static Hopeful Narrative

Country Overview: Russia

Analysis of Russian President Putin’s Homepage

Web Site of Russian President Vladimir Putin

Putin as Human Narrative

A Dialogic/Transparent Narrative

Identifying Priorities

The Putin Construct: A Summary

Summary of “Data Rich” Head of State Web Sites

Chapter 7: Discussion

Synthesizing Findings

Identifying Developing Country Head of State Web Site Similarities

Web Site Content and Design

Functional Patterns in Studied Sites

Propaganda Usage by Heads of State

Transcending Boundaries with Propaganda (neutral) on the Web

Explicating Impropaganda

Toward Answering the Research Questions


Research Questions

Testing a Prototype Model of Public Relations, Propaganda, and Persuasion

Limitations of This Study and Directions for Future Research

Appendix A: Propaganda Device Descriptions

Appendix B: Coding sheet for Government/Presidential Web sites — Developing Countries

Appendix C: Email Copy to Head of State Sponsors and AA-IRB Approval

Appendix D: Qualitative Coding Sheet with Annotated Descriptions

Appendix E: Responses from Head of State Web Site Sponsors




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