Journalists' practice clashes with their ideals

Posted By: Staff
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Washington, Nov 4 (ANI): Intense competition pushes journalists to gather eye catching news and write attention grabbing articles even though the heightened focus on audience clashes with their journalistic ethics, says a new Swedish study.

Ulrika Andersson, a doctoral student at the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden presented the theory in her thesis' Journalister och deras publik.

Forhallningssatt bland svenska journalister' - 'Journalists and their audiences. Attitudes among Swedish journalists'

Andersson said: "Journalists generally feel it is important to respond to what the audience wants, but at the same time they often don't really know what this is."

Ideally, journalists have a two-pronged task, firstly, they have to deliver news that is relevant to the common man, and secondly, as professionals they have the responsibility to determine what people must know to be able to live as good citizens.

Anderson brings this out by saying: "The journalistic task is double-natured to some degree, and this affects how journalists approach their audience."

The study also spells out that female journalists, especially young ones are more likely to consider the audience as they hunt for news, on the other hand male journalists, more so the older ones often follow traditional ideals while working.

The results show that the view of the journalist's role and the method by which journalists draw their audience are influenced by the brisk transformation in the field over the past decade or two.

"But it is important to remember that this issue concerns primarily attitudes and not actual behaviour," Andersson pointed out.

She added: "Journalists tend to overestimate people's interest in entertainment-related material and underestimate their interest in news." (ANI)

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