Do news written in a narrative form better attract younger audiences? This presumption was tested in a new study by Mariska Kleemans, Gabi Schaap and Mitchel Suijkerbuijk, of Radboud University.
The participants representing different age groups were given four online news articles written in either a narrative or an inverted pyramid stucture. The study measured information recognition and appreciation.
Results show that narrative news inform people more than the inverted pyramid form. This applies to all ages, at least in situations where background information cannot be used. Appreciation for the narrative form news was lower, however. This may be because it does not fit the traditional “serious” news format, the authors write.
Overall, younger participants expressed lower appreciation towards all the articles, regardless of format. When targeting younger audiences only, the narrative structure may still be the better choice, the authors reflect. Future research should look at varying media and platforms, as well as different topics.
The article “Getting Youngsters Hooked on News” was published in Journalism Studies and is available online (free abstract).
Picture: Untitled by Neonbrand, license CC0 1.0