Admitted to the MA Journalism and New Media.
Introducing new technologies inside the newsrooms creates new professional cultures, organisational structures, and business models. Although there has been a recent uptick in the literature that addresses innovation in journalism, the speed with which new technologies develop has left journalists and media scholars playing catch-up. In this course, we will pay attention to different areas of news production, from how journalists gather and analyse data to how they distribute new information using evolving digital platforms and news assistants.
During our lectures, we will draw from theories of innovation in journalism to identify and understand the current challenges journalists face today: Do platforms like Facebook and Google negatively impact newsroom autonomy? How can journalists discern between fake news and essential information in big data? How are algorithmic news recommenders and audience metrics changing how reporters imagine their audiences? Is artificial intelligence a threat to the democratic role of journalism?
Our seminar sessions are tailored to cover new developments in the industry. To achieve this, the sessions draw from a diverse set of articles covering topics such as:
Data and journalism
Platformization and multimodalities
News recommenders and voice assistants
At the end of this course, the student can recognise the most critical debates around innovations happening today in newsrooms across the world.
The student can demonstrate a critical understanding of contemporary debates about data, journalism, and the relationship between ethics and new technologies.
The student can critically examine innovative technologies in journalism and their use in media projects and formulate an opinion about the opportunities and challenges they bring to the industry.
The students have gained insights into the critical phase of designing, implementing, and evolving new technologies inside newsrooms.
The students can assist with the implementation of new technologies inside newsrooms to gather, analyse, and disseminate journalistic stories.
The students can reflect on fundamental journalistic questions about technological innovations, such as ethical and legal issues, transparency, fairness and accuracy.
The timetables are available through My Timetable.
Mode of instruction
Halfway through the course, students submit an individual essay based on the material reviewed during the first five weeks, including the assigned articles and the in-class discussion.
Toward the end of the course, students make a live, in-person group presentation to a committee of journalists and media workers. The presentation should focus on new technologies' challenges and opportunities for journalism. A small written reflection is also submitted.
Individual Essay: 50%
Group pitch and group reflection: 50%
The resit for the mid-term essay will consist of a written essay based on the assigned readings and/or lectures content (i.e., same format, more content to cover). The hightest possible grade is a 6.0.
The resit for the group pitch will consist of an oral exam, where the group will go through a Q&A session about the presented material. The highest possible grade is a 6.0.
The resit for the individual reflection will consist of an oral exam, where the student will go through a Q&A session about the presented material. The highest possible grade is a 6.0.
Inspection and feedback
How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.
Week 1. Data, journalism, and innovation
Steensen, S. (2009) What’s stopping them?, Journalism Studies, 10:6, 821-836, DOI: 10.1080/14616700902975087
García-Avilés, J. (2021). “Review article: Journalism innovation research, a diverse and flourishing field (2000-2020)”. Profesional de la información, v. 30, n. 1, e300110. https://doi.org/10.3145/epi.2021.ene.10
Week 2. Data journalism
Rogers, S. (2014). Data journalism is the new punk. British journalism review, 25(2), 31-34, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0956474814538181
Casselman, B. (2019, Nov 13). “In Data Journalism, Tech Matters Less Than the People”. The New York Times
Jamil, S. (2019): Increasing Accountability Using Data Journalism: Challenges for the Pakistani Journalists, Journalism Practice, DOI: 1080/17512786.2019.1697956
Week 3. Data analysis and visualisation
Horky, T., & Pelka, P. (2017). Data Visualisation in Sports Journalism: Opportunities and challenges of data-driven journalism in German football. Digital Journalism, 5(5), 587-606, DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2016.1254053
Gray, J. (2012, May 31). “What Data Can and Cannot Do”. The Guardian
Dick, M. (2014) Interactive Infographics and News Values, Digital Journalism, 2:4, 490-506, DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2013.841368
Week 4. Platformization and multimodalities
Meese, J., & Hurcombe, E. (2021). Facebook, news media and platform dependency: The institutional impacts of news distribution on social platforms. New Media & Society, 23(8), 2367-2384, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444820926472
Helmond, A. (2015). The platformization of the web: Making web data platform ready. Social media+ society, 1(2), 2056305115603080, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/2056305115603080
Week 5. Digital cultures
Hoffmann, A. L., Proferes, N., & Zimmer, M. (2018). “Making the world more open and connected”: Mark Zuckerberg and the discursive construction of Facebook and its users. New media & society, 20(1), 199-218, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444816660784
Gillespie, T. (2014). The relevance of algorithms. Media technologies: Essays on communication, materiality, and society, 167(2014), 167.
Week 6. Virtual reality
Pavlik, J. (2000) The Impact of Technology on Journalism, Journalism Studies, 1:2, 229-237, DOI: 10.1080/14616700050028226
Jones, S. (2017) Disrupting the narrative: immersive journalism in virtual reality, Journal of Media Practice, 18:2-3, 171-185, DOI: 10.1080/14682753.2017.1374677
Week 7. News recommenders and voice assistants
Helberger, N. (2019). On the democratic role of news recommenders. Digital Journalism, 7(8), 993–1012. https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2019.1623700
Thurman, N., Moeller, J., Helberger, N., & Trilling, D. (2019). My Friends, Editors, Algorithms, and I: Examining audience attitudes to news selection. Digital Journalism, 7(4), 447–469. https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2018.1493936
Bastian, M., Helberger, N., & Makhortykh, M. (2021). Safeguarding the Journalistic DNA: Attitudes towards the Role of Professional Values in Algorithmic News Recommender Designs. Digital Journalism, 9(6), 835–863. https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2021.1912622
Week 8. Audience metrics
Helberger, N. (2020) The Political Power of Platforms: How Current Attempts to Regulate Misinformation Amplify Opinion Power, Digital Journalism, 8:6, 842-854, DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2020.1773888
Tandoc Jr, E. C., & Thomas, R. J. (2015). The ethics of web analytics: Implications of using audience metrics in news construction. Digital journalism, 3(2), 243-258. DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2014.909122
Week 9. Automation
Lokot, T., & Diakopoulos, N. (2016). News Bots: Automating news and information dissemination on Twitter. Digital Journalism, 4(6), 682-699, DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2015.1081822
Diakopoulos, N., Trielli, D., & Lee, G. (2021). Towards understanding and supporting journalistic practices using semi-automated news discovery tools. Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction, 5(CSCW2), 1-30.
Week 10. Artificial intelligence
Broussard, M., Diakopoulos, N., Guzman, A. L., Abebe, R., Dupagne, M., & Chuan, C. H. (2019). Artificial intelligence and journalism. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 96(3), 673-695, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1077699019859901
Stray, J. (2019). Making artificial intelligence work for investigative journalism. Digital Journalism, 7(8), 1076-1097, DOI: [10.1080/21670811.2019.1630289]https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21670811.2019.1630289)
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