Algerian French-language press companies: Strategies and journalistic practices to expand the public.
Algeria’s French-language press generally targets a readership belonging to the bilingual classes, westernised in both its references and lifestyle. It has been regarded for a long time as an „elitist media“, compared to a „popular“ Arabic press. However, what we have found in a small corpus of everyday speech among journalists covering a football match between Algeria and Egypt is the use of „slang“ as a new journalistic practice. Our initial hypothesis was to show that the French press is using this strategy in order to reach more readers, because we assume that in Algeria the French language fosters lower reading habits. The corpus consists of two selected newspapers specialising in sport, „Le Buteur“ and „Competition“, in addition to two other general newspapers, „Le Soir“ and „El Watan“, during the month of November 2009. We explore how these four newspapers tried to boost their readership through their coverage of a sporting event (Algeria’s qualification for the World Cup). Then we focus on how these newspapers treated the events of the „Arab Spring“. This will allow us, for the first time, to verify whether the use of „slang“ was dictated by the choice of the event or whether it is a common practice. Then we analyse the discursive strategies of the same press in relation to the protest movements in the Arab world (the case of Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt during the period 18 December 2010 to 25 February 2011). Our goal is to detect dynamic discursives and highlight the strategies used by the press to cover these events in a way that would broaden its readership. To specify a transversal approach, we note that our research is part of an axis of „The Industrialization of Culture, Information and Communication“ and also addresses issues of „the publicizing and mediatisation of social structures“. We will look at the operation of the Algerian French-language press and its relationship with advertising and printing companies owned by central government, as well as at the visibility of societal space, and its attempts to rehabilitate certain forms of expression used in conversational media such as Facebook. Main theoretical references: Balandier. Bonnafous. Bouquillon. Brahimi. Cabedoche. Charaudeau. Esquenazi. Habermas. Negt. Miege. Le Bohec. Lounici. Marcchetti. Neveu. Olivesi. Ruellan.