It’s not all cat videos: moving beyond legacy media and tackling the challenges of mapping news values on digital native websites

CANTER, Lily (2018). It’s not all cat videos: moving beyond legacy media and tackling the challenges of mapping news values on digital native websites. Digital Journalism, 6 (8), 1101-1112.

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The question “what is news?” has been a topic of scholarly examination for more than 60 years as researchers have sought to develop and revise the taxonomy of news values to inform journalism education and wider public debates on the subjectivity of journalists. However, these studies have focused on legacy print and broadcast media even when attempting to bring their findings into the digital era by examining online content. To date, there has been limited research, in the UK and internationally, on news values on digitally born news websites–platforms that only exist online such as Huffington Post, Buzzfeed News and LADbible, which are consumed by a third of the UK population at least once a week. A significant impediment is the complexity of mapping offline latent coding methods to fluid online content. Digital native websites are particularly problematic due to their varied appearance across platforms–desktop, tablet and mobile–and their multiple access points–via web browser, social media and App. Yet, content analysis has a rich history dating back to the clergy's examination of newspapers in the late 1600s and the method has proved to be an adaptable tool for measuring news output as each new media technology has emerged. This paper argues that it is imperative that researchers look beyond legacy media when studying digital news values due to the growing significance of digital native news websites in the marketplace. The secondary purpose of this methodological paper is to highlight the challenges of capturing and analysing news values on digital native news platforms and suggest how researchers can begin to tackle the complexities of liquid content analysis in this field.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute > Communication and Computing Research Centre
Identification Number:
Page Range: 1101-1112
Depositing User: Carmel House
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2018 12:31
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 02:15

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