Breaking through Barriers to Entry

By: Steven Pope  

As a case study, TIME: The Kalief Browder Story exemplifies one success story of how a social change documentary can make its way into the concentrated cable/broadcast media industry. This report analyzes the production foundations of TIME to determine how the documentary recounting Kalief Browder's time spent in solitary confinement made its way past concentrated barriers to entry. Following the production analysis, this article also includes a brief synopsis of how the production foundations of TIME resulted in well-rounded storytelling unseen in commodified entertainment. The main finding from this report argues that the community backing and alternative support for the documentary lead to the successful creation and dissemination of TIME. From this, the praxis of the research suggests that in order to increase the amount of socially meaningful media in the cable/broadcast industry audiences must be incentivized to donate to their community media production companies. One possible solution proposed to incentivize audience would be to provide tax deductions or write offs for audiences who donate to their community media projects or alternative media outlets.

Cable, Broadcast, Documentary,
2018 Special Focus: Alt-Media - The Shifting Tide of Political Communication
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Steven Pope

Lab Instructor, Department of Communication, Florida State University, United States
-, United States

Steven Pope ( is a master's student in Media and Communications Studies at Florida State University. As an undergraduate student, Steven was first exposed to film and documentary studies and from then on has worked to integrate political economy theory into the greater acadmeic interest of documentary. Steven's other research interests include rhetorical criticism, sociolinguistics, historiography, and interpersonal communication.