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Masduki
Published: 21 October 2021
Media and Communication, Volume 9, pp 52-61; https://doi.org/10.17645/mac.v9i4.4225

Abstract:
In transitional democratic countries with significant digital media user bases, the “authoritarian turn in digital media” has resulted in new forms of media control designed to counter critical media exposure. This article investigates the ongoing digital pressures experienced by Indonesian media organizations and investigative journalists by the partisan supporters of the country’s new authoritarian political leaders. This article provides a critical review of the forms of media control that have emerged in Indonesia within the past five years (2015–2020), giving special attention to the doxing allegedly faced by several news media and journalistic projects: IndonesiaLeaks; Tempo magazine; and WatchDoc. Applying qualitative methods (observation, semi-structured interviews, review of documents), this study finds that the rise of non-state and societal control over critical media leads to self-censorship amongst media and journalists. This study shows that online trolls, doxing, and hyper-partisan news outlets are used as new forms of media control. Control is also exerted by paid-social media buzzers, whose online identity is established by their use of digital and social media platforms to manipulate information and counter critical news regarding incumbent and oppositional political leaders. This article contributes to the academic debate on the intended forms of media control in digital politics of transitional democracies.
Published: 3 August 2021
Journalism Practice pp 1-19; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2021.1960587

Abstract:
Nonprofit digital new organizations, which are proliferating all over the world, are praised for their innovations in audience-focused interventions in journalism. Drawing on direct observation and in-depth interviews, this case study explores audience engagement practices within nonprofit newsrooms in South-East Europe, in order to elaborate on the impact of professional norms on such engagement in a complex media and political environment. This analysis explains how two nonprofit organizations in Kosovo have reinvented engagement by adopting a digital crowdsourcing platform that facilitates bottom-up storytelling and a public service model that transcends traditional journalistic roles. Unlike previous engagement models observed in societies with traditional professional culture, this study reflects how nonprofits with flexible professional boundaries find ways to expand engagement by also practicing advocacy and accountability.
Birgit Røe Mathisen, Lisbeth Morlandstø
Published: 16 December 2020
Journal: Journalism
Abstract:
The article investigates how the regional newspaper Nordlys facilitates public debate in the Arctic region of Norway. In 2014, Nordlys launched Nordnorsk debatt, a new development of the traditional letters to the editor, offering possibilities for audiences to comment and participate in public debates online. The article is based on a study of 883 opinion pieces posted on this website in 2017 and 2018. We analyse the individuals who access Nordnorsk debatt; we identify role and formal positions of the participants, and what issues they engage in. We also discuss how Nordnorsk debatt might contribute to dialogue and diversity in the regional public debate. We find an increasing engagement over the 2 years and a variety of issues brought into public discussion. Although the debate forum has a broad scope of participants, the analyses suggest that it is primarily a forum for the elites. Despite this, even if grassroots representatives do not dominate the agenda, their opinion pieces are mostly shared and disseminated.
, Hayley Blackburn, Stephen McConnell
Published: 26 October 2020
Newspaper Research Journal, Volume 41, pp 433-454; https://doi.org/10.1177/0739532920968338

Abstract:
As news commenting has evolved as a participatory tool and journalists have developed traditional practices for moderation, there are questions about how to promote quality spaces for news discourse. Using gatekeeping theory, this study analyzes in-depth interviews with 13 news comment moderators to understand how these individuals establish moderation routines and define their professional role. This provides new insight into the journalist–audience relationship and the development of new media practices for online news production.
Published: 10 August 2020
Journalism Practice, Volume 16, pp 19-34; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2020.1798272

Abstract:
Strengthening media coverage of climate change is a top news and societal priority. The magnitude and impact of global warming and rising sea levels is challenging to communicate, and to comprehend, at global and local scales. Media efforts are frustrated by a myriad of factors, including increased audience reliance on social media for news and information and how that can be compromised by brevity or misinformation. Scientific complexity, and political and cultural conflict, along with psychological factors also shape how people engage with climate issues. The situation is exacerbated by a dramatic decline in the number of print and TV local news outlets and loss of journalism jobs, and rising consumer news avoidance and public distaste for negative coverage. Curious Climate is an engaged journalism experiment by Australia’s public broadcaster, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), in collaboration with scientific organisations in the island state of Tasmania. The ABC asked the public for climate change questions which were answered with content and events led by scientists. Survey data from audiences and journalists contributes empirical evidence on how such new approaches to audience-led local journalism can deliver relevant local news, expand audiences, and provide trusted, relevant sources of information on complex issues.
, Stephen McConnell, Hayley Blackburn
Published: 8 August 2020
Digital Journalism, Volume 8, pp 1-20; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2020.1802319

Abstract:
Journalists and commenters have struggled to negotiate the appropriate use of news forums. But research about perceptions of commenters has typically focused on journalists and not the comment moderators who specifically manage content. This study uses in-depth interviews with 13 U.S. news comment moderators to understand through a field theory analysis how moderators perceive commenters as possible threats to the profession and, potentially, help to develop quality commenting into a form of journalistic cultural capital.
, Regina G. Lawrence
Published: 27 February 2020
Journalism Practice, Volume 14, pp 518-536; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2020.1731319

Abstract:
Building upon the sociotechnical perspective presented by Lewis and Westlund (2015, “Actors, Actants, Audiences, and Activities in Cross-media News Work: A Matrix and a Research Agenda.” Digital Journalism 3 (1): 19–37. doi:10.1080/21670811.2014.927986), this study examines organizational dynamics, technological affordances and professional challenges of engaged journalism practices by analyzing how Hearken, one of the most celebrated audience engagement companies, and its tools and services are being implemented in 15 U.S. news organizations. This framework identifies Hearken and organizations like it as important “external actors” providing technological “actants” that are shaping how newsrooms report the news by providing ways for audiences to be brought into producing the news, particularly during the earlier phases of the reporting process. Based on in-depth interviews, we find that nearly every news organization in our sample reports some measure of success by using Hearken for involving audience members throughout the production of news. At the same time, we also identify how this implementation is significantly shaped by organizational imperatives and the models particular organizations create for producing audience-centric news work. Ultimately, this study presents a partial update to the decades-long literature on participatory journalism by suggesting that engaged journalism practices actually create opportunities for meaningful audience involvement.
Published: 8 February 2020
New Media & Society, Volume 23, pp 894-919; https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444820904365

Abstract:
Building on existing theoretical frameworks for the study of incivility, interactivity, and negativity bias, this study contributes to the growing body of literature on the impact of incivility in online comments. Specifically, it tests incivility’s impact on news engagement intentions; investigates political and personality predispositions’ roles as perceptual filters; and extends this scholarship to the context of multiple scientific news topics. It found that, when dealing with news about two of the more politically divisive technologies—fracking and synthetic biology—ideology moderated the effects of incivility, with uncivil comments encouraging engagement among conservatives but not among liberals. However, in the less politically divisive context of nanotechnology, self-monitoring played a significant role in moderating incivility’s effects: with high self-monitors being more motivated, and low self-monitors less motivated, to share nanotech news after exposure to uncivil comments. These results imply that individual predispositions and topic-specific factors both underlie the impact of incivility on news engagement intentions.
Published: 1 January 2019
Zbornik radova Pravnog fakulteta, Nis, Volume 58, pp 315-330; https://doi.org/10.5937/zrpfn0-23433

Abstract:
The huge impact of digital technology has led to reconsidering the concept of the media. In theory, there is a common agreement about the new concept of the media, offered by Karol Jakubowicz (2009), which includes new content forms, new creators of content, and new media activities. Starting from this conception of the media, the European regulatory framework redefines many earlier solutions in its documents. A significant change is the "broadening" of the media concept that now includes Internet publications. On the other hand, editorial responsibility is a necessary condition for the website to be considered as a medium, and this requirement is defined in European media policy documents. The phenomena created as a result of the new digital environment pose significant challenges for media regulation. The Internet has enabled the direct participation of citizens who set up online content using new distribution channels; among other things, it leads to weakening the boundaries between the public and the private sphere. New intermediaries are entering the media sphere, such as Internet browsers and Internet content aggregators, which perform some media functions and functions similar to the media. The paper analyzes the solutions offered by European media regulations and Serbian legislation in this field.
Johanna Fulda
Published: 29 December 2018
The publisher has not yet granted permission to display this abstract.
Patricio Moya Muñoz,
Spanish Maintenance and Loss in the U.S. Southwest, Volume 15, pp 369-391; https://doi.org/10.1075/sic.00019.car

Abstract:
O: El objetivo de este estudio es identificar la variación cuando se utilizan mecanismos de intensificación en los comentarios en español sobre las noticias digitales que publican dos periódicos: El País (España) y Emol (Chile), y en dos ámbitos temáticos diferentes: la política y los deportes. Para lograr este objetivo, se analizó un corpus compuesto de 2,400 comentarios con la herramienta para el análisis de corpus UAM Corpus Tool. Los resultados obtenidos señalan que, por un lado, los comentarios de los escritores españoles correspondientes al diario El País presentan una mayor cantidad de intensificadores que aquellos escritos en Emol. Por otro lado, se detectó que el ámbito temático no influye de forma determinante en la frecuencia de los intensificadores en ambos sub-corpus. Por último, se distingue la presencia de estrategias relacionadas con el español coloquial conversacional como, por ejemplo, la personalización mediante yo y .
Published: 5 July 2018
Journal: Journalism
Journalism, Volume 20, pp 827-847; https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884918784733

Abstract:
Participation has become a key issue in contemporary journalism studies, yet research on how the participatory space is being appropriated by users is rather limited. This article attempts a methodological contribution by offering a way to analyze participatory journalism in reference to variant participatory affordances enabling different levels of creative effort, control, and editorial permeability. To do so, it understands participation as the active involvement of users, and makes an analytical connection among technological affordances, motivations, and contextual factors. The article offers empirical evidence challenging both cyber-optimist and cyber-pessimist assumptions about participation. Drawing on insights from a web-based survey, it is argued that the ‘reluctant audience’ paradigm may be interpreted in terms of the ‘lazy audience’ and the ‘fearful audience’, which seem to coexist along with the ‘reactive audience’.
Published: 11 June 2018
Journalism Studies, Volume 20, pp 1149-1166; https://doi.org/10.1080/1461670x.2018.1493949

Abstract:
Journalists see online commenters as outsiders who are a potential threat to the reputation and legitimacy of professional journalism. But should commenters be seen as potential new journalistic agents, or are they serving a political role? This study uses field theory to consider how online commenters at one large news organization engage in promoting ideology and how journalists respond. Commenters see themselves as the duty-bound defenders of political perspectives rarely seen in media. Journalists see this as a threat to their profession. The potential political role for the online commenter in journalism is discussed.
Published: 23 February 2018
Digital Journalism, Volume 6, pp 436-453; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2018.1440972

Abstract:
Spurred by the increasingly central role of audience metrics in the editorial process, a new set of roles is being introduced in the newsroom primarily focused on navigating audience data. This paper aims to understand these emerging audience-oriented roles and to what extent considerations of the audience figures in editorial choices. This paper draws from a set of 15 in-depth interviews with engagement editors, social media editors and audience editors from different media systems around the world. Three major findings emerge: First, the definition of engagement is almost entirely centered on different types of metrics. Second, while audience-oriented editors take part in the editorial process, their role is to help journalists negotiate between the information obtained by their metrics and their journalistic intuition to make editorial decisions. Third, there is a lack of cohesiveness regarding what these newsroom positions are and how they operate. The paper contributes to the growing literature on the pervasiveness of metrics and quantification of journalistic processes by offering a more nuanced understanding of a new set of editorial roles.
Published: 2 January 2018
Journal of Radio & Audio Media, Volume 25, pp 77-91; https://doi.org/10.1080/19376529.2017.1370712

Abstract:
This study was conducted in an environment of widespread use of social media and mobile applications in the mass media. The general goal of the study was to analyze the use of WhatsApp in cybermedia, specifically in radio. A case study was proposed to examine the use of WhatsApp on the program Las mañanas de RNE, broadcast by Spanish National Radio. It was found that the public was very accepting of the program’s initiative to solicit WhatsApp voice messages, beginning in November 2015. The case study used audio files of a direct broadcast that included specific times for audience participation. The use of WhatsApp was accepted by the audience, in addition to the use of the conventional telephone, as a tool well-suited to listener participation in radio programming. Finally, the study highlights the importance of interactive, participatory spaces in broadcasts through the creation of synergies with new forms of online participation.
, Mariska Kleemans
Published: 14 November 2017
Journal: Electronic News
Electronic News, Volume 12, pp 113-127; https://doi.org/10.1177/1931243117739947

Abstract:
This study investigates the truism that sensationalism in news is a guarantee for success in terms of selling the story to the public. More specifically, it investigates the impact of sensationalist content and packaging features on news viewing behavior. A web-based experiment among 190 participants was conducted in which participants could watch a maximum of 16 news stories that varied in content (neutral vs. negative stories) and packaging (standard vs. tabloid stories). The viewing time per news story was the dependent variable. Results show that sensationalism stimulates viewing time, but also that there are limits to the power of sensationalism. In all, the truism about sensationalism as a guarantee for success appears to be largely true, but not completely.
Published: 7 November 2017
Journalism Studies, Volume 20, pp 500-522; https://doi.org/10.1080/1461670x.2017.1392255

Abstract:
Integrating user-generated content (UGC) has become an everyday practice in online journalism. Previous research suggests this can have both a beneficial and detrimental effect on a recipient’s perception of online journalism’s trustworthiness. We conducted an online experiment that, on the one hand, examined the overall influence of integrating UGC in an online news article compared to leaving it out altogether. On the other hand, we also analyzed how two specific modes of integrating UGC, namely its verification and visualization, influence trustworthiness. Controlling for different news topics, our results show that UGC is not a way to boost journalistic trustworthiness. In general, the journalistic use of UGC has a negative but overall weak impact on recipients’ perceived trustworthiness of a news article. Regarding the mode of integration, the verification of UGC to some extent positively increases trustworthiness, while visual integration has no substantial impact. Overall, the study sheds light on the hitherto somewhat neglected recipients’ perspective on UGC and lays the groundwork for future studies focusing on the reasons behind the uncovered effects of UGC on trustworthiness.
Published: 26 October 2017
Journalism Practice, Volume 12, pp 1220-1240; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2017.1391712

Abstract:
In recent years, the rapid expansion of Web 2.0 tools has opened new possibilities for audience participation in news, while “engagement” has become a media industry buzzword. In this study, we explore approaches to engagement emerging in the field based on in-depth interviews with editors at a range of news outlets from several countries, and we map these approaches onto the literature on participatory journalism and related innovations in journalism practice. Our findings suggest variation in approaches to engagement that can be arrayed along several related dimensions, encompassing how news outlets measure and practice it (e.g. with the use of quantitative audience metrics methods), whether they think about audiences as more passive or more active users, the stages at which they incorporate audience data or input into the news product, and how skeptically or optimistically they view the audience. Overall, while some outlets are experimenting with tools for more substantive audience contributions to news content, we find few outlets approaching engagement as a way to involve users in the creation of news, with most in our sample focusing mostly on engaging users in back-end reaction and response to the outlet’s content. We identify technological, economic, professional, and organizational factors that shape and constrain how news outlets practice “engagement.”
Published: 2 October 2017
Visual Communication Quarterly, Volume 24, pp 203-218; https://doi.org/10.1080/15551393.2017.1388701

Abstract:
While business models and technological innovations continue to disrupt journalistic practice, global image culture has never been stronger. Developed society is inundated daily with a torrent of images. Yet some of these are barely seen, while others almost instantly accrue scores of likes, shares, and comments. What, then, are the factors that constitute engaging, social photojournalism? Using Q methodology, which bridges qualitative and quantitative approaches, 30 participants ranked photos published on Instagram by news organizations or photographers and shared insight through interviews on what factors affect their engagement. In this way, the users' and the images' characteristics were both studied to shed light on why certain photos accrue more engagement and why certain types of people “like” certain types of content. The findings identify three types of users—feature lovers, newshounds, and optimists—and describe their motivations for interacting on the platform. Insights on how the number of people in the frame, the visibility of facial features, the presence of watermarks, and the post type affect user engagement were also gathered and discussed.
, Edgar Simpson
Published: 18 August 2017
Journalism Practice, Volume 12, pp 1148-1164; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2017.1359653

Abstract:
This study analyzes online reader comments on top US newspapers’ stories related to former congressman, Anthony Weiner’s, August 2016 sexting scandal. Audience gatekeeping was seen through such discussion themes as gender bias and sexism, political scandals, and sex addiction. The analysis revealed that the majority of reader comments significantly diverged from the news topic, and many comments about US politicians were uncivil. Furthermore, online discussions “drowned out” newspapers’ intended message about Weiner’s inclusion of his toddler son into a sexually explicit selfie. This study argues that online commentary should not be perceived as a dichotomy—a negative or positive development, a contributor or preventer of public discourse—but rather as a continuum of citizen engagement.
J. David Wolfgang
Published: 11 July 2017
Digital Journalism, Volume 6, pp 21-40; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2017.1343090

Abstract:
Online commenting has become a popular form of audience–journalist interaction. However, journalists have become frustrated with commenters who use forums to attack and make assertions. As journalists look for ways to reign in commenters, it becomes important to consider how journalists make decisions about moderation policies and practices. This study used gatekeeping theory to consider how one organization approached moderation and related issues of content management. The researcher conducted a one-month ethnography of a large news organization and their online forums and discovered that journalists set high expectations of commenters, but willingly accept low-quality content. Journalists appear to struggle with how to institute policies that promote high-quality discourse without engaging in intense battles with the audience and having to devote more resources to moderation. Journalists focus on establishing balance between allowing the audience to have a conversation without allowing that conversation to disrupt the traditional practices of journalism.
Eun-Ju Lee,
Published: 7 July 2017
Human Communication Research, Volume 43, pp 436-449; https://doi.org/10.1111/hcre.12123

The publisher has not yet granted permission to display this abstract.
Published: 9 February 2017
Journalism Practice, Volume 12, pp 115-135; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2016.1270171

Abstract:
This study examines the quality of winners and finalists in major national and international data journalism awards. We completed a content analysis of data projects submitted by Canadian media to three journalism associations—the Online News Association, the Global Editors Network and the Canadian Association of Journalists—as far back as the first award in this category in 2012. Our research addresses how journalists executed what could be considered excellent data journalism. Our findings point to a lack of accepted standards regarding what is considered as excellence. The quality of the projects was limited by two key factors: the use of free online options such as Google Maps that were not easily customizable; and the number of practitioners who worked on the data projects largely within traditional journalism frameworks. The most used visual elements were dynamic maps, graphs and video. With respect to interactivity, all but one of the projects contained an interactive element. The most popular interaction techniques were inspection and filtering, considered entry-level techniques in the field of information visualization. These techniques suggest a need for collaborative interdisciplinary approaches to data journalism, and further study on the implications of tools such as Google Maps on practice.
Published: 2 February 2017
Digital Journalism, Volume 5, pp 1281-1299; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2017.1279979

Abstract:
Trust has long been considered an important factor that influences people’s relationship with news. However, the increase in the volume of information available online, together with the emergence of new tools and services that act as intermediaries and enable interactivity around the news, may have changed this relationship. Using Reuters Institute Digital News Report survey data (N = 21,524), this study explores the impact of individual trust in the news media on source preferences and online news participation behaviour, in particular sharing and commenting, across 11 countries. The results show that those with low levels of trust tend to prefer non-mainstream news sources like social media, blogs, and digital-born providers, and are more likely to engage in various forms of online news participation. These associations tend to be strongest in northern European countries, but are weaker elsewhere. Seeking alternative views and attempting to validate the credibility of news may be among the motivations behind these associations.
Published: 8 September 2016
Journalism Practice, Volume 11, pp 247-265; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2016.1223552

Abstract:
A collaborative relationship between citizen journalists and professional journalists has long been an aspiration for many media scholars. While tensions surrounding professional control are significant, scholars also have to consider the structural dynamics of content online and across social media networks, particularly in an era of the corporatized and commercialized Web. The rise of social discovery tools and algorithms is also addressed. This article aims to bring to light these concerns and moves the conversation about citizen journalism forward by proposing a model that identifies the pathway through which news organizations gather, select, package, and disseminate citizen journalism content.
Published: 1 September 2016
Journalism & Communication Monographs, Volume 18, pp 112-157; https://doi.org/10.1177/1522637916656332

Abstract:
This study analyzes the ways in which one community newspaper connects a broad, diverse population bound by a common ideal. The subject of the research is the national edition of The Budget, a weekly newspaper produced by and mailed to Amish and Mennonite readers. The newspaper’s correspondents typically pass along information about local life, such as illnesses, marriages, and descriptions of community activities. Using Benedict Anderson’s construct of “imagined communities” as a framework, this research explores the portrayals of Amish and Mennonite life in those dispatches and considers the ways those portrayals unite readers. The study identifies four dominant themes around which imagined Amish and Mennonite communities may coalesce: emphases on community, tradition, worship and spirituality, and outward symbols of community membership. The study argues that those common themes are especially important to the Amish and Mennonite communities given their growing geographic dispersal. The study illustrates the way a media outlet may affirm community membership in a diaspora. By providing a platform for writers to share daily routines, the newspaper creates a space for the vicarious experience of community.
Published: 31 August 2016
Journalism Practice, Volume 11, pp 160-176; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2016.1219963

Abstract:
Increased interest in hyperlocal news has led to growing evidence of its economic value, its ability to play traditional democratic roles associated with news, and its merits and deficiencies in comparison with the outputs of a declining established commercial news industry. Given many hyperlocal producers cite the desire to play a role in producing better communities, this paper breaks new ground in examining the social and cultural dimensions of hyperlocal journalism’s news-making, community-building, and place-making roles. We examine this emergent cultural form’s affinity with telling stories, and enabling conversations, about civic and political concerns, but also its affinity with, and celebration of, the banal everyday. Employing the novel theoretical concept of reciprocal journalism, we provide new evidence about the mutually reinforcing online, and offline, practices that underpin relationships between producers and the communities they inhabit and represent. Drawing on evidence from the most extensive multi-method study of UK hyperlocal news to date, it demonstrates the different kinds of direct and indirect reciprocal exchange practices common in community news, and shows how such work, often composed of journalistic and community-activist practices, can enable and foster relationships of sustained reciprocity which improve and strengthen both hyperlocal news and the communities it serves.
Published: 5 August 2016
Digital Journalism, Volume 5, pp 903-918; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2016.1224671

Abstract:
This mixed-method study assessed the relationship between the content in news articles about mental health and illness and the reading and sharing of this content by the news audience. It used Web analytics from three major Canadian news sites. Regression analysis indicated a tendency for social media users to share news about mental health and illness that was neutral in tone and that contained recovery and intervention as themes. Stories on mental health that had themes of violence and criminality, however, did not increase the article’s readership or online sharing. This research is considered in the context of the sociological process of making news, network gatekeeping, and uses and gratifications theory.
Published: 3 July 2016
Digital Journalism, Volume 5, pp 731-752; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2016.1189840

Abstract:
A large body of research has explored the employment of user-generated content (UGC) in journalism websites. While rich and informative, accumulated research offers discrete insights into an array of research questions but lacks a comprehensive account of the larger picture that emerges. With this in mind, we propose an analytical framework for evaluating UGC’s roles in professional news websites. Based on a synthesis of accumulated research, we differentiate between the realm of journalism as a business and a practice; and the realm of democracy, wherein news media may play a role as a public sphere and a means of political empowerment. By offering a comprehensive examination of key findings and themes arising from UGC research, the article seeks to advance our understanding of the evolving news media landscape. It concludes with directions for further research.
Published: 23 June 2016
Journalism Practice, Volume 11, pp 740-759; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2016.1193821

Abstract:
Online resources are increasingly facilitating research for those traveling for business or leisure. Professionally produced articles and guides are now consulted alongside TripAdvisor, blogs, wikis, and other non-professional sources. This research seeks to understand the role of travel journalists, to explore their occupational ideology and how they distinguish themselves from other content creators. Through content analysis and interviews with English-speaking journalist and bloggers who focus on Paris as a destination, researchers were able to identify an ideology specific to professional travel journalists. Ultimately they do not do anything that amateur writers cannot, and often rely on their branded publication to give them credibility. Travel journalists do, however, adopt some practices inherent to bloggers interviewed, including moving towards more personal writing and lowering reporting standards, while resisting social media. While in a moment of identity crises, travel journalists still differentiate themselves from bloggers, further research will reveal if this phenomenon is unique to a highly mediatized destination like Paris.
Published: 23 June 2016
Digital Journalism, Volume 5, pp 791-808; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2016.1195133

Abstract:
This article investigates commentary journalism online, based on a case study of the Norwegian regional newspaper Nordlys and its online commentary and debate section. The aim is to discuss how journalists perceive the loss of control when technologies and users interact with the debate agenda online. Actor-network theory is used to explore the interaction amongst editorial staff, new technologies, professional norms and the participation of audiences. The findings reveal that digital technology becomes a powerful actor in the network of public media, as it directly affects the forms of journalistic presentation and public debates. In addition, new technologies contribute to the empowerment of audiences, who gain better access to both the newsroom and the wider public.
Published: 13 October 2015
Digital Journalism, Volume 4, pp 764-783; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2015.1090882

Abstract:
Many news organizations provide online readers with an opportunity to comment on public issues in the news through a news-mediated forum for discourse. These spaces are provided by news organizations as part of a mission to provide a public space for discourse, but are governed by a commenting policy that establishes the rules for discourse and behavior. These rules can help to meet the ideals of public discourse or stand in the way of productive public deliberation. This study examines the commenting policies of 21 news corporations in the United States to see how the policies facilitate or inhibit the creation of a space for ideal public discourse. A constant comparative analysis of the policies guided by the ideals of Habermas’ public sphere, as well as the expectations of civility norms, shows that news organizations establish rules to protect respectful and egalitarian spaces for the public, but fail to meet other critical needs of public discourse, including rationality, tolerance, reflexivity, and the pursuit of common understanding and solutions. The implications of these findings are further explored and possible objectives for news organizations are provided.
Aske Kammer
Published: 15 July 2015
Journalism Practice, Volume 9, pp 872-889; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2015.1051371

Abstract:
Integrating perspectives from research into cultural and post-industrial journalism, this article presents a pilot study of websites with reviews of arts and culture conducted by amateurs. Such websites constitute a popular space for cultural criticism, and one that challenges traditional hierarchies within journalism. The article maps which Danish websites conduct arts and culture reviews, asks what features these websites have that facilitate public discourse, and measures the actual discussion on the websites. While academic diagnoses of the state of the online public sphere have generally been discouraging, this article argues that this is partly due to a strong focus on politics rather than on culture and illustrates how the cultural public sphere of online reviews constitutes a heterogeneous space for a public discussion about arts and culture. Furthermore, it shows that some amateur reviewers have highly specialized knowledge of culture and, on that basis, argues that the emergence of this type of critic might represent a qualitative strengthening of cultural criticism.
Published: 15 July 2015
Journalism Practice, Volume 9, pp 760-772; https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2015.1051357

Abstract:
This special issue addresses a topic of journalism studies that has previously been somewhat neglected but which has gained increasing scholarly attention since the mid-2000s: the coverage and evaluation of art and culture, or what we term “cultural journalism and cultural critique.” In this introduction, we highlight three issues that serve to frame the study of cultural journalism and cultural critique more generally and the eight articles of this special issue more specifically: (1) the constant challenge of demarcating cultural journalism and cultural critique, including the interrelations of “journalism” and “critique”; (2) the dialectic of globalisation’s cultural homogenisation, on the one hand, and the specificity of local/national cultures, on the other; and (3) the digital media landscape seen in terms of the need to rethink, perhaps even redefine cultural journalism and cultural critique.
, Mikko Villi
Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies, Volume 23, pp 182-196; https://doi.org/10.1177/1354856515592511

Abstract:
This article explores processes of co-creation in the media industry, particularly in the context of magazine media brands. We discuss the content and practices of creative collaboration between editorial teams and online audience communities. Based on two empirical case studies using analytical interviews and focus group discussions, we introduce a new model and framework for analysing co-creative processes. The model of co-creative collaboration is focused on three areas of media work: production, marketing and development. We conclude that co-creative processes between editorial teams and audience communities have a definite impact on the future of media work and media management. Importantly, the work of editorial teams is transformed from content production through creating platform concepts to coordinating, managing and nurturing audience communities.
The International Journal of Press/Politics, Volume 20, pp 317-338; https://doi.org/10.1177/1940161215581926

Abstract:
This article analyzes the nature of debate on “below the line” comment fields at the United Kingdom’s Guardian, and how, if at all, such debates are impacting journalism practice. The article combines a content analysis of 3,792 comments across eighty-five articles that focused on the UN Climate Change Summit, with ten interviews with journalists, two with affiliated commentators, plus the community manager. The results suggest a more positive picture than has been found by many existing studies: Debates were often deliberative in nature, and journalists reported that it was positively impacting their practice in several ways, including providing new story leads and enhanced critical reflection. However, citizen–journalist debate was limited. The results are attributed to the normalization of comment fields into everyday journalism practice, extensive support and encouragement from senior management, and a realization that comment fields can actually make the journalists’ life a little easier.
Published: 23 April 2015
Digital Journalism, Volume 3, pp 1-19; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2015.1034525

Abstract:
This article presents the findings of an exploratory piece of research focusing on contributors to the participatory news photo agency Citizenside (launched in France in 2006 and based on a business-to-business model, equivalent to iReport, Blottr, or Demotix). The authors have studied the viewpoints of contributors themselves, through an online questionnaire and through in-depth interviews. The responses help to identify the profiles, practices, and motivations of so-called citizen photojournalists. Contrary to bloggers or users regularly commenting on online news articles—which research has often scrutinized since the mid-2000s to understand better online areas of participation—the active audiences or publics producing news images are driven by logics which remain poorly known, if not stereotyped. Several features showing the shift from ordinary to organized practices are discussed in the paper, including the minor use of smartphones as well as the importance of the preparatory fieldwork versus the minority of events captured “by chance.” In this respect, the motivations and profiles of Citizenside’s contributors go further than citizenship aspects, as they behave actually as independent eye-witnesses and photographers/videographers, some of whom are even remunerated. Therefore, in the authors’ view, these publics, considered as “amateurs” from afar, are in fact driven by (semi-)professional logics.
Published: 13 January 2015
Mobile Media & Communication, Volume 3, pp 214-229; https://doi.org/10.1177/2050157914552156

Abstract:
This paper examines the significance of user-distributed content (UDC) for news consumption, thereby offering an innovative take on mass communication and the participatory audience. From the viewpoint of media organizations, UDC is a process by which the mass media converge with online social networks through the intentional use of social media and other platforms and services in an effort to expand the distribution of media content. In order to focus specifically on mobile news consumption, this paper sheds light on the novel phenomenon of mobile user-distributed content (mobile UDC). Mobile UDC is manifested in mobile users’ ability to share online media content on a perpetual and ubiquitous basis. The study utilizes the results from a survey carried out with Finnish Internet users. The main finding is that mobile Internet users are more active in UDC than those who do not use the Internet with mobile devices. It is thus argued that mobile UDC, as a developing concept, can be used to explain the practices that are characteristic of mobile online news consumption.
José Alberto García-Avilés
Published: 29 September 2014
Journal of Mass Media Ethics, Volume 29, pp 258-272; https://doi.org/10.1080/08900523.2014.946600

Abstract:
Digital journalism poses new ethical challenges in journalism. As part of a comparative analysis of online journalism in three European countries, Spain, Italy and Belgium, the results of the second phase of fieldwork conducted in Belgium, which consisted of a series of in-depth exposed to journalists who work in the online media for its position on issues that affect their ethical decisions in this more interactive and dynamic context in which it conducts journalistic rutine.El periodismo digital plante nuevos retos deontológicos en la profesión periodística. En el marco de un análisis comparativo del periodismo online en tres países europeos, España, Italia y Bélgica, se exponen los resultados de la segunda fase del trabajo de campo llevado a cabo en Bélgica, el cual consistió en una serie de entrevistas en profundidad a periodistas que desarrollan su actividad en el medios online para conocer su posición sobre cuestiones que afectan a sus decisiones éticas en este contexto más interactivo y dinámico en el que se lleva a cabo el trabajo periodístico
Published: 14 April 2014
Journalism Studies, Volume 15, pp 619-631; https://doi.org/10.1080/1461670x.2014.895527

Abstract:
Audience participation has become a salient component of contemporary digital news environments, challenging traditional boundaries between readers and journalists. In this paper, we present an analytical framework for the evaluation of participation features in news websites, consisting of five axes: Chronology—the stage of news production; Visibility—transparency and prominence; Agency—users' and editors' level of activity; Integration—segregation versus embeddedness of participatory features; and Share-ability—inner, public and social circles of activity. This framework was developed in a cross-cultural study based on a grounded theory approach. We examined participation features in 15 prominent news websites in the United Kingdom, the United States and Israel, and conducted a cross-national and cross-organizational analysis. Other than the use of advanced social plugins, no significant cross-national differences were found in the implementation of participatory features. However, the differences discovered between news organizations require further investigation into the factors shaping the selection and construction of news-based participatory features.
Ori Tenenboim, Akiba A Cohen
Published: 31 December 2013
Journal: Journalism
Journalism, Volume 16, pp 198-217; https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884913513996

Abstract:
This study examined the relationship between two mechanisms of online participation – clicking and commenting – as well as the characteristics of heavily clicked versus highly commented-upon news items. Based on 15,431 items from a popular Israeli website, correlations between clicking and commenting were calculated for 12 separately analysed months from 2006 to 2011. In addition, overlap rates were determined, showing that 40–59% of the heavily clicked items in any given month were different from the highly commented-upon items. A subsequent content analysis indicated that while sensational topics and curiosity-arousing elements were more prominent among the heavily clicked items than among the highly commented-upon items, political/social topics and controversial elements were more prominent among the highly commented-upon items. The study contributes to deepening our understanding of the role of user comments in constructing social/group identity and offers a new perspective on a prolonged controversy surrounding audiences’ news preferences.
Aske Kammer
Published: 1 December 2013
Journal: Nordicom Review
Nordicom Review, Volume 34, pp 113-126; https://doi.org/10.2478/nor-2013-0108

Abstract:
The potential of audience participation constitutes a most important characteristic of digital journalism. This article presents an inductive study of audience participation in the production of online news in a Danish context, analysing how audiences participate, and what relationships between journalists and audiences accompany this participation. The article discusses the concept of participation, arguing on the basis of sociological theory that it should be understood as those instances where the audience influences the content of the news through their intentional actions. Applying this definition, it proposes four ideal types of audience participation in the production of online news, namely sharing of information, collaboration, conversation and meta-communication.
Published: 14 November 2013
Digital Journalism, Volume 2, pp 44-61; https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2013.850200

Abstract:
Using qualitative data drawn from in-depth interviews with journalists, this study investigates how leading print newsrooms in Zimbabwe are adapting to the wave of changes spawned by readers’ comments on their websites. It specifically examines how newspaper journalists are handling the “new” context in which strangers contribute and respond directly to something they alone once controlled. The paper further explores the professional and ethical dilemmas emerging with the volumes of user-generated content posted on the websites and the approaches taken by newsrooms in managing and “gatekeeping” the content. The study generally observes that while newsrooms are still broadly adjusting to the influx of readers’ voices in their territory, the comments are increasingly shaping and contributing to the dynamics of newsmaking in ways that point to an emerging ecological reconfiguration and recasting of dimensions of news production. In the same way, the comment forums embody spaces for public deliberation. However, the lack of clear gatekeeping strategies has opened floodgates of abuses and extremist views that pose serious threats to the core values of news as well as the normative ideals of traditional journalism.
Published: 7 August 2013
Journalism Studies, Volume 15, pp 411-430; https://doi.org/10.1080/1461670x.2013.831232

Abstract:
The audience has always been an important reference for journalism although, under mass media conditions, it remained an “operative fiction” for its practitioners, reflecting a clear distinction between sender and recipients. Recent shifts in mediated communication towards networked public spheres and the increasing implementation of participatory features force media organizations, journalists and scholars alike to rethink the journalism–audience relationship. We introduce the concept of audience inclusion in journalism, to provide an analytical framework to investigate the relationship between journalists and (their) audience. The article presents the results of a multi-method case study of the German television newscast “Tagesschau” and its online platform tagesschau.de, and compares the attitudes of journalists and audience members towards the role of journalists, the relevance of participatory functions, the motivations for participation, and their general assessment of audience participation. By and large we find congruence between journalists' and users' expectations towards audience participation in news journalism. However, there is notable disagreement regarding the (assumed) motivations of users for participating at “Tagesschau”.
Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies, Volume 19, pp 472-495; https://doi.org/10.1177/1354856513493698

Abstract:
The rise in use of social media platforms as tools of communication has presented journalists with an abundance of opportunities and challenges in equal measure. These platforms have enabled journalists to engage directly with their readers and develop new forms of interactivity, both pertinent and banal in nature. By analysing the content of multiple social media profiles at two daily regional newspapers in the United Kingdom, it has been possible to determine how interactivity between journalists and readers is being shaped. This article has identified a spectrum of interactivity, which indicates that individual journalists are engaging with their readers in an informal, personal and reciprocal manner via social media platforms. This is in contrast to the formal approach being taken by their associated media companies that are transferring traditional top–down forms of communication from the offline world to the online world. Research for this article was conducted via interviews and content analysis.
Lily Canter
Published: 19 February 2013
Journal: Journalism
Journalism, Volume 14, pp 1091-1109; https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884912474203

Abstract:
The rise of citizen journalism and widespread use of multimedia technology via Web 2.0 is a growing field of research. Yet the impact on local newspapers in the UK has received limited attention from scholars. At the time of this study, Northcliffe Media’s flagship newspaper the Leicester Mercury was piloting a project with community reporter network Citizens’ Eye to incorporate reader content into the newspaper and its website. This article explores the nature of this experimental relationship and the economic motivations behind it. It identifies that citizen journalists have a variety of fluid roles which flow between source, resource and collaborator. However, the key to the success of the project is the creation of distinctive boundaries between low level reporting carried out by community reporters and investigative journalism carried out by employed, trained staff. The research was conducted via a case study incorporating interviews and observation.
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