Mainstream Media

analytical Essay
1999 words
1999 words

Mainstream media such as television, radio, newspapers were the primary source of reliable information before the epoch of the internet. However, the situation has changed. The evolution of modern technology in the world today has led to the continuous increase in the methods of practicing journalism. Social and technological advancements have not only improved the pace and content of this field’s practice, but has extended its genre to online or cybernetic journalism. (Project for Excellence in Journalism, 2007). News websites most of which are owned by major media companies and alternative websites with user generated content such as social networking sites and blogs are gaining grounds in the journalism field of practice. (Nel, n.d). One of the chief forces affecting the practice of journalism nowadays is online citizen journalists. Nel (n.d) defines citizen journalism as “individuals playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analysing and disseminating news and information”. He further adds that “citizen journalism is slowly being looked upon as a form of rightful democratic ways of giving hones news, articles, etc, directly by citizens of the world from anywhere.” One of the major researches conducted in the field of citizen journalism, describes the phenomenon as “individuals who intend to publish information online, meant to benefit a community”, and this information is expected to benefit the audience or the wider population in making decisions for the improvement of their community. (Carpenter, 2010.)

Diversity in content is probably the most important factor when talking about online journalism. In a recent ECREA journalism conference held at the University of Navarra, one of the burning issues wa...

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...itizen journalism publications have been found to contain or publish topics similar to those of smaller online newspaper publications, covering issues on athletics, human interest and social events. (Tichenor et al, 1980). Meanwhile, larger online newspaper publications according to Shim, (2006), concentrate more on topics such as crime, government and politics. This assertion is confirmed by the Project for Excellence in Journalism (2006), whose research indicates that topics such as government, politics, foreign relations, elections are reported in a larger proportion than entertainment and human interest stories in online newspapers.


Research which has been conducted on the use of hyperlinks or hypertexts in online journalism have relied on the methodology of quantitative content analyses to count the number off links present in online news sites.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that the evolution of modern technology has led to the continuous increase in the methods of practicing journalism. news websites owned by major media companies and alternative websites with user generated content are gaining ground in journalism field of practice.
  • Explains that the first generation of net news was similar to the old and waning methods of computing characterised by online newspapers with poor interface designs, clumsy connections and unnecessary use of graphic designs.
  • Explains the evolution of the internet as a news medium in the 2000's, stating that the third generation of net news engages younger audiences into the world of news and public affairs.
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