Online news sites do not use transparency, background information, or participation promoting features as much as they could, write Edda Humprecht and Frank Esser, both of University of Zurich. The authors analysed 1 660 news stories on 48 different news websites.
Against the authors’ expectations, no clear country clusters could be found. Outlets from Switzerland, Germany, France, Italy, Great Britain, and the United States were investigated. Instead ownership had an effect: publicly owned outlets used more new technological features than privately owned ones.
Humprecth and Esser divide the investigated news outlets into three, broad categories. Some outlets clearly emphasized transparency features and others background information providing features. Finally, a group of “print-oriented” outlets, which used these features very conservatively, was identified.
The article “Mapping digital journalism” was published by the journal Journalism. It is available online (abstract free).
Picture: Untitled by Mari77, licence CC0 1.0.