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The dramatic societal changes such as globalisation and information revolution transformed terrorism into a global challenge at the turn of the millennium. Today’s widespread global terrorism is a product of informational age because terror is a communication act, a means to transmit messages to the authorities. Terrorists use the media as a retransmitter and the society as a resonator. The potential of mass self-communication gives them the possibility to broadcast a large amount of data that can be also widely republished by the traditional media. Content analyses of the media show that journalists are responsible for provoking panic, victimization and collective stress within the community (Altheide, 2002, 2009). That is why media relations are one of the most important actions in anti-terrorist policy.
The presentation shows multidisciplinary analysis of terrorism in terms of social control and crisis followed by recommendations for governmental communication strategies. Terrorism represents an alternative way of social control ‘from below’ through fear, conflict and victimization of the society. The governments should increase their own informal ways of social control to oppose manipulations of any kind, including terrorism. That can be done by means of communication. Most crisis researches classify terrorism as a crisis of malevolence and a conflict-type crisis. Crisis management expert Paul Shrivastava (2005) qualifies terrorism crisis as a particular crisis type that needs special research and response strategies, including crisis communication and media relations.
The presentation gives recommendations for Antiterrorist Governmental Media Policy used in practice by the Information Policy Department of the Presidential Administration of Russia.