The Work of News in an Age of Information Abundance

Pablo J. Boczkowski

in News at Work

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780226062792
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226062785 | DOI:
The Work of News in an Age of Information Abundance

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This chapter discusses the empirical examination of the production, products, and consumption of news and the dynamics of imitation. It examines a reduction in content diversity with respect to the culture and politics of contemporary social life. The growth in the proportion of generic news content shared across the mainstream media and the growth in the role of third-party providers, such as wire service agencies, that supply this content might drastically narrow the news agenda put forward by these media and concentrate a substantial portion of the power to set this agenda among a handful of players. The analysis presented in this chapter argues that it might be tied to a rise in the prevalence of generic news content and the importance of the wire services providing it. It may also be related to a decrease in the watchdog role traditionally played by news organizations and the concomitant alterations in the balance of power in society. The analysis also highlights the inability of consumer-driven alternatives to reach large segments of the population with a wider and more diverse set of stories.

Keywords: news media; information resources; news consumption; imitation; social life; journalism; wire services

Chapter.  6690 words. 

Subjects: Sociology

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