Digital Europe Economic seminars

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Ken­za Lamot (Uni­ver­si­ty of Antwerp)

Metrics For News. The Uses and Effects of Ana­ly­tics in Journalism

Quali­ty jour­na­lism in the pre­vio­us cen­tu­ry was still con­si­de­red as jour­na­lism that har­dly needed to take into acco­unt its audien­ce. Seve­ral deve­lop­ments, such as incre­asing com­mer­cial pres­su­res and advan­cing tech­no­lo­gi­cal and digi­tal capa­bi­li­ties, have bro­ught abo­ut a gre­ater focus on audien­ces. Mean­whi­le, news media have embra­ced the­ir reader­ship and it is wide­ly accep­ted that edi­tors take into acco­unt the inte­re­sts and pre­fe­ren­ces of the­ir audien­ce. Ana­ly­ti­cal tools such as Chart­be­at, Google Ana­ly­tics and Smar­tOc­to are the­re­fo­re being sold to new­sro­oms to help them bet­ter under­stand the­ir audien­ce and incre­ase „audien­ce enga­ge­ment” with news.  

The dis­ser­ta­tion seeks to inve­sti­ga­te how Fle­mish new­sro­oms use audien­ce ana­ly­tics and what effects this use has on the deci­sion-making jour­na­li­sts make during the news selec­tion pro­cess and on the news sup­ply itself. It wants to exa­mi­ne, among other things, whe­ther the gro­wing atten­tion for click- and reading figu­res could have the down­si­de that the news sup­ply shi­fts towards softer, tri­vial sub­jects that are cate­ring to audien­ce demand. Using vario­us empi­ri­cal methods (in-depth inte­rviews, a survey, an expe­ri­ment and a con­tent ana­ly­sis), the rese­arch attempts to get a grip on the­se questions.
The results of the dis­ser­ta­tion show that the use of ana­ly­tics is com­mon and wide­spre­ad among Fle­mish new­sro­oms. Ana­ly­tics are used for abo­ut six prac­ti­ces, inc­lu­ding con­tent opti­mi­za­tion such as the pla­ce­ment or pre­sen­ta­tion of an artic­le. Howe­ver, digi­tal edi­tors indi­ca­te that jour­na­li­sts» gut feeling and know­led­ge would always pre­va­il when edi­to­rial cho­ices are made. Indi­vi­du­al jour­na­li­sts are also fami­liar with the use of tho­se ana­ly­tics, altho­ugh often indi­rec­tly thro­ugh com­mu­ni­ca­tion from the­ir edi­tors. It is rather the youn­ger jour­na­li­sts who use tho­se ana­ly­tics on the­ir own and who adopt the same posi­ti­ve mind­set of the­ir edi­tors. Even tho­ugh the use of ana­ly­tics is nuan­ced in both stu­dies, more in-depth ana­ly­ses of the effects of ana­ly­tics reve­al that ana­ly­tics pri­ma­ri­ly dri­ve the selec­tion of „softer” news. Ana­ly­tics had an effect on the pla­ce­ment of soft new headli­nes and Face­bo­ok selec­tion is also more like­ly to dri­ve softer con­tent based on ana­ly­tics.

In short, the pre­sen­ta­tion pro­vi­des a nuan­ced pic­tu­re of the dif­fe­rent effects and uses of ana­ly­tics. Jour­na­li­sts seem to be sear­ching for a mid­dle gro­und that tries to recon­ci­le com­mer­cial and jour­na­li­stic moti­ves witho­ut com­pro­mi­sing on quali­ty, the thin line they have been balan­cing on for decades.

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Tematy kolejnych spotkań:

TBA

TBA

W przypadku pytań zapraszamy do kontaktu z dr. Wojciechem Hardym

Semi­na­ria są jed­nym z dzia­łań zwią­za­nych z pro­gra­mem „Ini­cja­ty­wa Dosko­na­ło­ści – Uczel­nia Badaw­cza” (IDUB). Pod­czas spo­tkań pn. „Digi­tal Euro­pe Eco­no­mic Semi­nars” pre­zen­to­wa­ne będą bada­nia z zakre­su cyfry­za­cji, pro­wa­dzo­ne przez czo­ło­wych aka­de­mi­ków i aka­de­micz­ki Unii Europejskiej.

Celem semi­na­rium jest wymia­na wie­dzy i zawią­za­nie rela­cji pomię­dzy bada­cza­mi i badacz­ka­mi z róż­nych kra­jów człon­kow­skich Unii Euro­pej­skiej. W semi­na­riach będą mogły uczest­ni­czyć tak oso­by pra­cu­ją­ce na uczel­ni jak i stu­diu­ją­ce, w tym w kra­jach innych niż Pol­ska. Ini­cja­ty­wa pozwo­li na posze­rze­nie hory­zon­tów badaw­czych oraz stwo­rze­nie sie­ci kon­tak­tów dla poten­cjal­nej przy­szłej współ­pra­cy i wymia­ny wiedzy.

 

Spo­tka­nia “Digi­tal Euro­pe Eco­no­mic Semi­nars” odby­wa­ją się dwa razy w mie­sią­cu, z kolej­ny­mi spo­tka­nia­mi zapo­wia­da­ny­mi z wyprze­dze­niem na stro­nie semi­na­rium. Semi­na­ria odby­wa­ją się w języ­ku angiel­skim. Dotych­cza­so­we wystą­pie­nia moż­na obej­rzeć tak­że na kana­le DELa­bUW na YouTu­be. Zapra­sza­my do uczestnictwa!

Seminaria DELab UW
„Digital europe economic seminars”

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