Across 50 chapters, organized thematically over seven sections, contributions examine a range of pressing challenges for news reporting – including digital convergence, mobile platforms, web analytics and datafication, social media polarization, and the use of drones. Journalism’s mediation of social issues is also explored, such as those pertaining to human rights, civic engagement, gender inequalities, the environmental crisis, and the Black Lives Matter movement. Each section raises important questions for academic research, generating fresh insights into journalistic forms, practices, and epistemologies. The Companion furthers our understanding of why we have ended up with the kind of news reporting we have today – its remarkable strengths, the difficulties it faces, and how we might improve upon it for tomorrow.
Completely revised and updated for its second edition, this volume is ideal for advanced undergraduates, postgraduates, researchers, and academics in the fields of news, media, and journalism studies.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The value(s) of truth-seeking in news and journalism
PART I Journalism and Democracy
News and the Public Sphere
India’s Imperilled Public Sphere: Challenges to Independent Journalism in the World’s Largest Democracy
The Political Economy of Contemporary Journalism and the Crisis of Public Knowledge
Peter Golding and Graham Murdock
Journalism and Community Engagement as if Democracy Matters
Lana F. Rakow
The so-called “crisis” of trust in journalism
Rachel E. Moran
Journalists, Epistemology, and Authority
Social Roles of Journalism
Bargaining with local journalism’s value
Kristy Hess and Lisa Waller
PART II Rewriting the Rules of Reporting
Journalism’s Multiple Gods: Objectivity, Its Variants, and Its Rivals
Newsroom cultures at risk? Journalism’s reliance on web metrics and analytics
Valérie Bélair-Gagnon and Avery E. Holton
The Changing Status of Women Journalists
Linda Steiner and Dinfin Mulupi
Digital Journalism in China: Media Convergence, the ‘Central Kitchen’ and the Platformization of News
Jing Meng and Shixin Ivy Zhang
Convergent Journalism: Cross-media content strategies to improve the quality of Thai news reporting
Pop Up Newsrooms: From New Collaborations to Counter Narratives
Online trolling of journalists
PART III News, Mobilities and Data
Witnessing George Floyd: Tracing Black mobile journalism’s rise, impact and enduring questions
Allissa V. Richardson
Mobility, smartphones and news
Andrew Duffy and Oscar Westlund
Journalism and Data Justice: Critically Reporting Datafication
Arne Hintz, Emiliano Treré and Naomi Owen
Balancing between “statistical panic” and “statistical boredom”: News, numbers and narratives in the risk society
Brendan Lawson and An Nguyen
Stephen D. Reese
Podcast journalism and performative transparency
Drone journalism: the invisibility of the aerial view
PART IV Crisis, Conflict and War Reporting
News reporting of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Perspectives from the Global South
Sara Chinnasamy and Felipe F. Salvosa II
Risk journalism and globalized crisis ecologies: Journalists as ‘cosmopolitan’ actors
Video Journalism and Human Rights
Beyond verification: UGC as embodied testimony in conflict news
Lilie Chouliaraki and Omar Al-Ghazzi
The Ethics of War Reporting
News Reporting of Pakistan and the War on Terror
Shahzad Ali and Ahmer Safwan
Photojournalism and the US-led invasion of Afghanistan
PART V Representing Realities
Journalism and Environmental Futures
News reporting of poverty and inequality
Journalism and Gender Violence
Women in Sports News: Challenges posed by the emergence of popular feminism
Celebrity News Online: Changing Media, Actors, and Stories
Anne Jerslev and Mette Mortensen
Girls, News, and Public Cultures
Cynthia Carter and Kaitlynn Mendes
Socially Responsible Journalism: Diverse Responses to Polarisation
PART VI Envisioning Alternative Journalisms
News Audiences and the Challenges of Digital Citizenship
Contextualizing Citizen Visual Journalism: Narrative and Testimony
Mary Angela Bock
Citizen Journalism, electoral conflict and peace-building processes in Kenya and Zimbabwe
Jacinta Maweu and Admire Mare
Journalism and counterpublics: Is journalism for all the people?
Bolette B. Blaagaard
News Literacy Practice in a Culture of Infodemic
Journalism and Ethnoracial Minorities
Sherry S. Yu and George L. Daniels
Teaching innovation and entrepreneurship. Journalism students as change agents?
Marcel Broersma and Jane B. Singer
PART VII Globalising Journalisms
Comparing journalistic cultures across nations
Fringe Benefits: Weekly Magazines and Access Journalism in Japan
David McNeill and Kaori Hayashi
Arab Investigative Journalism: Exploring Processes of Cultural Change
Theorizing Journalism and the Global South
Bruce Mutsvairo and Kristin Skare Orgeret
Mapping anti-press violence in Latin America: Prospects for reform
Devalued News Workers in the Labor of International Journalism: Local Stringers and Fixers
Abstract: Rapid changes in audience habits, media technologies and market dynamics have prompted searching questions about the role and relevance of public service broadcasting (PSB) in the modern digital media landscape. In the UK, where cultural policymaking is increasingly politicised, the normative ideals traditionally associated with PSB are being openly contested. This article evaluates how PSB generates varied forms of “public value” of benefit to viewing and listening publics, policy stakeholders and the creative sector. On the basis of its qualitative analysis of policy documents and related research literatures over two decades, a typology of six values – social, cultural, economic, industrial, representational and civic – is identified and critiqued across regulatory and institutional frameworks. In assessing the challenges, risks and opportunities for sustaining these public values, this article offers its typology for informing cultural and media policy debates on the future of PSB in the UK and beyond.
Just over a year ago, Tom Chivers and I co-wrote a submission of written evidence in response to the ‘Consultation on a change of ownership of Channel 4 Television Corporation,’ Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (14 September, 2021). This DCMS consultation called for views and evidence on the potential change of ownership of Channel 4 Television Corporation.
Our submission is now in the public domain via the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (Nesta, London). Any and all comments welcome!
This Discussion Paper presents the findings of a study examining British newspaper coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the cultural and creative industries (CCIs) from 1 January to 31 December 2020 (n.4,162). It assesses the broad contours of this coverage before focusing on a pivotal week – 3 to 10 July – where we find the highest concentration of items reporting on the Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) and on freelancers in the arts and cultural sector (n.215). We explore the following questions: (1) how are issues central to the Culture Recovery Fund and freelancers framed / represented in the coverage? (2) How is the government response to the crisis in the cultural and creative industries characterised and responsibility attributed?; (3) what actors (sectors, institutions, locations) are present in the coverage, which ones are the key sources, and how are their views represented? We found that the framing of the issues in news items mostly offered narrow parameters of discussion, proving overly reliant upon official press releases, and affording space to a limited range of voices.
Available for free here. All comments and suggestions welcome!
Chivers, T. and Allan, S. (2022) ‘Privatising Channel 4: The evidence behind the debate,’ 12 April, Creative Industries Policy & Evidence Centre. London: Nesta.
Allan, S. and Chivers, T. (2022) ‘Envisioning Broadcasting Anew: Responding to the White Paper on the future of UK broadcasting policy,’ 11 May, Creative Industries Policy & Evidence Centre. London: Nesta.
Please follow Tom and me on Twitter for further posts.
Chivers, T. and Allan, S. (2022) ‘BBC funding: licence fee debate risks overlooking value of UK’s public broadcasters,’ The Conversation, 19 January.
“The proposed two-year freeze in the TV licence fee has prompted a lively debate about BBC funding…
Here is a link to our (free) article, a version in The Western Mail, plus an earlier one (also free) published by CITYAM newspaper and website:
Chivers, T. and Allan, S. (2022) ‘In an age of Netflix, Britain’s public broadcasters must step up to the challenge,’ CITYAM.com, 11 January.
“The BBC has become a lightning rod for debate over the role of public service broadcasting and its role in our society. As the broadcaster prepares for its mid-term charter review and Channel 4 faces down the challenge of privatisation, we must re-evaluate how we look at the notion of maximum possible benefit to the public…”
This discussion paper elaborates the concept of ‘public value’ to inform an evaluative framework for examining public service broadcasting (PSB) in the UK, particularly with respect to emerging debates on the future of policy-making in rapidly evolving media contexts. We begin with a case study of the implementation of public value tests at the BBC from 2004 to the present day, analysing how this strategic concept has encapsulated a varying set of principles, regulatory objectives, political challenges and economic pressures facing the UK’s largest public service broadcaster. Following this, we offer a prospective typology of six values — social, cultural, economic, industrial, representational and civic value — for defining and assessing the public benefits of PSB within a new media ecology. In so doing, we discern various tensions warranting greater attention in forthcoming discussions regarding a renewed policy settlement for the UK’s PSB model.
Please click this link for a PDF copy. All comments and suggestions welcome!
I’m pleased to say a conceptual article Chris Peters and I have co-authored has appeared in the journal Digital Journalism. DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2021.1903958
‘Weaponizing Memes: The Journalistic Mediation of Visual Politicization’
Chris Peters & Stuart Allan
This article develops the concept of “mimetic weaponization” for theory-building. Memes recurrently serve as identificatory markers of affiliation across social media platforms, with ensuing controversies potentially proving newsworthy. Our elaboration of weaponization refers to the purposeful deployment of memetic imagery to disrupt, undermine, attack, resist or reappropriate discursive positions pertaining to public affairs issues in the news. For alt-right memetic conflicts, impetuses range from “sharing a joke” to promoting “alternative facts,” rebuking “political correctness” or “wokeness,” defending preferred framings of “free speech,” or signalling cynicism, distrust or dissent with “mainstream” media, amongst other drivers. Of particular import, we argue, is the politics of othering at stake, including in the wider journalistic mediation of a meme’s public significance. Rendering problematic this contested process, this article focuses on Pepe the Frog as an exemplar, showing how and why variations of this mimetic cartoon have been selectively mobilized to help normalize – ostensibly through humour, parody or satire – rules of inclusion and exclusion consistent with hate-led agendas. Digital journalism, we conclude, must improve its capacity to identify and critique mimetic weaponization so as to avoid complicity in perpetuating visceral forms of prejudice and discrimination so often presented as “just a bit of fun.”
If you would like to read a free copy, please click here.
All comments welcome, of course (email probably best!)