Word of the Day – April 18, 2012

Balkanization (noun)

bawl kin uh ZAY shuhn

the breaking up of a large area or group into smaller units: originally, the breaking up of the Balkan Peninsula in the late 19th and early 20th centuries into smaller, often mutually hostile units

Cable penetration is slowly bringing about the Balkanization of the American television audience. That audience, roughly identical to the U.S. population at large, is gradually declaring its independence from three-network cultural hegemony and reconstituting itself into dozens of smaller but more cleanly defined “taste culture” viewing groups. Whereas once CBS, NBC, and ABC were the Sears, the Montgomery Ward, and the K-Mart in a shopping center without boutiques, now the industry offers viewers opportunities for more personalized services.
David Marc     November 1984

… from More Words That Make A Difference

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