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  • 1.
    Almgren, Susanne
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    News Users’ (Dis)trust in Media Performance: Challenges to Sustainable Journalism in Times of Xenophobia2017In: What Is Sustainable Journalism?: Integrating the Environmental, Social, and Economic Challenges of Journalism, Peter Lang Publishing Group, 2017, p. 161-179Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this chapter, the sustainability of journalism is explored with interest in how users express trust and distrust towards professional news media. The challenges to the sustainability of journalism have social, financial and environmental tenets. The center of attention here is the social aspect of how users negotiate the end of journalism in society. Users have conflicting views on how professional news media perform, oscillating between if the responsibility of news media should be extended to coverage of conflicting issues or to enable citizens to share a common ground imprinted by solidarity. These aspects merge and manifest in news related to issues of xenophobia and solidarity. The changed financial prospects of the news industry coincide with the timing of globalization’s effects on the local scene, where people experience increasing hurdles across the world. The sustainability of journalism—considered crucial for democracy—is currently under substantial pressure. At the same time, living conditions are deteriorating around the world. People need to migrate to other societies that are becoming ever more polarized between xenophobia and solidarity. News covering this process is constructed within a professional value system that—for the sustainability of journalism—needs to be perceived as legitimate.

  • 2.
    Almgren, Susanne
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Participating Users across News Media SpacesManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 3.
    Almgren, Susanne
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    ‘The monkey mountain’ and other stories of (dis)trust: Online news comments as venues for commonplace politics2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 4.
    Almgren, Susanne
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Undoing Churnalism? Users sharing local news on Facebook2017In: Digital Journalism, ISSN 2167-0811, E-ISSN 2167-082X, Vol. 5, no 8, p. 1060-1079Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study investigates the types of information that users of a local news site share on Facebook. This issue relates to the idea of "churnalism", which concerns a form of weakened journalism that diminishes the ability to perform expected tasks in a democratic society. As a major social media platform, Facebook has acquired substantial influence over news dissemination, and therefore, scholarly focus needs to be directed to users as news disseminators. The manners by which users share news on Facebook indicate whether churnalism is promoted or abated through users' interaction with online news. In this study, a quantitative content analysis illustrates how 348 news articles published on a local news site were shared 7266 times. The results show that concerns related to churnalism should be directed primarily to the fact that the news outlet only rarely provides users with opportunities to interact with serious or hard news, while lightweight news is frequently offered. Despite this, users abate churnalism in the sense that the news they prefer to share is news from in-house sources rather than from external sources. The news extensively shared covers changes in the vicinity, and health care, and has emerged from local and regional events.

  • 5.
    Almgren, Susanne
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Users and producers: Online News as Mediated Participation2017Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this thesis is to illuminate principles that guide mediated participation, taking place through the interplay between users and news producers. Therefore, the study focuses both how spaces for participation are structured (by news producers) and those that exert participatory practices (news users). The research design thus has an approach that ties together analytical strands that previously have been studied separately. The research questions concern how the conditions comprising mediated participation – in terms of opportunities for users’ participatory practices – differ between (1a) various types of online news sites, and (1b) various types of news, as well as how users exercise participatory practices (2a) on various types of news sites, and (2b) in connection to various types of news. The last research question (3) concerns how users express the connection to news producers, through participatory practices within participatory spaces. The thesis includes four papers, that together answer the research questions by applying content and text analyses to various types of news sites (big city national, local rural area, morning broadsheets and evening tabloids) and its content: news articles and features for user participation, such as comments and sharing news through social media (i.e., Facebook and Twitter).

    The results show that users and news producers take diverging approaches to user participation adjacent to online news. This is illustrated by the fact that the categories of news that users are most often permitted to interact with, coincide precisely with the news that users tend to decline to interact with, while the news categories that users tend to interact with (when given the chance) occur comparatively sparse. The results also show that news producers are much more prone to permit users to share news through social media, than to permit them to comment news on the news site. Almost all news are made to permit users to share news through Facebook and Twitter, whereas commenting news is substantially more restricted, and even more so among big city national news sites than among local rural area news sites. When it concerns user practices, users share news on Facebook 20 times more often than they share news through Twitter or comment news on news sites. Tweeting news almost only occurs in news sites affiliated with big city national newspapers, and most prominently so when it concerns evening tabloids. This means (when controlling for differences in circulation) that commenting as a user practice tend to have a more local character than tweeting news, with its more national focus.

    The connection between users and news producers is shaped by the approach these groups of actors take to each other, under different circumstances. Sharing news through Facebook and commenting on news sites, are not interchangeable practices. Nor is tweeting news from a news site affiliated with national tabloid compared to from a local morning newspaper. And although it is well known from extant research that producers hold hesitant views concerning users’ influence over content, users also express distrust when it concerns how professional media practices allow various actors salience in the media. These ideas primarily concern “elites” versus “commoners”, differences between public service and commercial media, regulations and media, including roles, genres, and formats. These ideas also concern whether representational principles should guide media representation or if certain views should be excluded, whether journalists’ political views affect media performance, and how crime news should be presented in terms of what events are published and representations of victims and perpetrators. Overall, the thesis illustrates that there are connections between various forms of electronic communication (i.e., commenting and sharing news through Facebook and Twitter), and the specific contextual and social settings that news sites are embedded within, with its specific situated audience, shaping the connections between users and news producers.

  • 6.
    Almgren, Susanne
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and communication science.
    Ekberg, Sara
    Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Media, Management and Transformation Centre (MMTC).
    User-Generated Content: Organizational Routines and Participatory Practices2013Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This review focuses user-generated content (UGC) in the mainstream media context. The review illuminates different facets of the notion of UGC, as it follows the interlocked and subsequent links in a chain from the mainstream media organizations, the professional journalistic practices, the generated content, the users, and finally the views on the generated content and the users generating it. The contribution of the review is twofold; 1) mapping the field’s current state and its counterpoints from a cohesive and interdisciplinary perspective and, 2) letting the review fall into the construction of ideal type sets that can be used for further theoretical development of the field.

  • 7.
    Almgren, Susanne
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Olsson, Tobias
    Lunds Universitet.
    Commenting, sharing and tweeting news: Measuring online news participation2016In: Nordicom Review, ISSN 1403-1108, E-ISSN 2001-5119, Vol. 37, no 2, p. 67-81Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Social plugins for sharing news through Facebook and Twitter have become increasingly salient features on news sites. Together with the user comment feature, social plugins are the most common way for users to contribute. The wide use of multiple features has opened new areas to comprehensively study users’ participatory practices. However, how do these opportunities to participate vary between the participatory spaces that news sites affiliated with local, national broadsheet and tabloid news constitute? How are these opportunities appropriated by users in terms of participatory practices such as commenting and sharing news through Facebook and Twitter? In addition, what differences are there between news sites in these respects? To answer these questions, a quantitative content analysis has been conducted on 3,444 articles from nine Swedish online newspapers. Local newspapers are more likely to allow users to comment on articles than are national newspapers. Tweeting news is appropriated only on news sites affiliated with evening tabloids and national morning newspapers. Sharing news through Facebook is 20 times more common than tweeting news or commenting. The majority of news items do not attract any user interaction.

  • 8.
    Almgren, Susanne
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Olsson, Tobias
    Lunds universitet.
    Deltagande användare - i princip och praktik2016In: Människorna, medierna & marknaden: Medieutredningens forskningsantologi om en demokrati i förändring, Stockholm: Fritzes, 2016, p. 377-401Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 9.
    Almgren, Susanne
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and Communication Studies.
    Olsson, Tobias
    Lunds Universitet.
    ‘Let’s Get Them Involved’ . . . to Some Extent: Analyzing Online News Participation2015In: Social Media + Society, ISSN 2056-3051, Vol. 1, no 2, p. 1-11Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The development of social media applications, such as blogs, Facebook, and Twitter, has offered new participatory opportunities for everyday media users. This article contributes to research by looking into one specific aspect of the increasingly more participatory media ecology—the news comment feature. Drawing on a quantitative content analysis of 1,100 news pieces, as well as spaces for user comments, the article reveals both how this emerging public space is shaped by the media company and, later, appropriated by their participating users. Our analysis reveals, for instance, that the online newspaper prefers to allow users to comment on lightweight news such as sports and entertainment. The users, however, prefer to post comments on news covering changes in proximity space, politics, and health care, while also clearly ignoring the most available news pieces (sport and entertainment). In the concluding section, the discrepancy in preferences is discussed.

  • 10.
    Almgren, Susanne
    et al.
    Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Media and communication science.
    Olsson, Tobias
    Lunds Universitet.
    Steering the Editorial Filter - User Comments as a Negotiated Space for Participation in Online News2014In: ECREA 2014 Lisboa - Communication for empowerment: citizens, markets, innovations: Book of abstracts, 2014, p. 28-Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The development of social media applications, such as blogs, Facebook and Twitter, has offered new participatory opportunities to everyday media users. In some respects, this also marks a transformation of public space, as the broadcasting era’s “audiences” nowadays also can take on the role as participating “co-creators”. Or to put it slightly differently: Contemporary media landscape allows for new forms of coexistence between producer and user generated content. For traditional media companies, this transformation has brought both challenges and opportunities. User generated content has always played a part in media production, but the current media situation has certainly made it a more salient feature. Among online newspapers, specifically, the new opportunities to include users’ participatory practices have taken different forms. For instance, they nowadays allow for convenient Facebook-liking and users linking blog posts to articles. They also spend both time and energy on making it easier for readers to get in touch with them in order to provide pictures, information, corrections, etc. Within this context of offering new, participatory opportunities to the previous “readers”, online newspapers have also come to adapt to and develop on one specifically salient strategy: To allow readers/users to comment on articles online. Media research has already paid attention to user comments as a participatory practice. These studies have typically looked into what technological features for participation that are offered and how they enable and limit users’ participatory practices (cf. Domingo et al., 2008; Hermida & Thurman, 2008). In this paper, we take on a slightly different approach. Firstly, the paper looks into the conditions for participation in terms of topics: What content are users allowed to comment on? How do content characteristics differ between news that are made available and news that are withheld from comments? After having mapped these conditions for participation we – secondly –analyze how users actually navigate within this (conditioned) space: What news are they interested in commenting on? How does commenting vary between different kinds of articles? These questions are answered by help of an analysis of 1.100 news items and their adjacent user interface in an online news site (affiliated with a professionally produced, local newspaper). In terms of methodology we apply quantitative content analysis. Our analysis reveals that the participatory space offered to the readers is geared towards light news, whereas users themselves have clear preferences for commenting news concerning changes in their local environment, about general national politics and welfare issues. The paper concludes with a discussion on potential explanations as to why this discrepancy exists and it also further reflects on its potential implications for users’ participatory practices.

1 - 10 of 10
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