Africa in the click stream: audience metrics and foreign correspondents in africa

Bunce, M. (2015). Africa in the click stream: audience metrics and foreign correspondents in africa. African Journalism Studies, 36(4), pp. 12-29. doi: 10.1080/23743670.2015.1119487

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Abstract

Digital technologies have transformed the relationship between news outlets, journalists and their audiences. Notably, editors can now monitor their websites and discern the exact news preferences of their readers. Research suggests that some editors are using this data to help them produce more popular, ‘click friendly’ content. To date, research on this phenomenon has focused on journalists working within newsrooms. This article adds to the literature by exploring the relationship of foreign correspondents in Africa with their audiences, and asks whether readership metrics are influencing the journalists’ selection and development of news stories. Drawing on 67 interviews with foreign correspondents in East and West Africa, the article identifies three different approaches to audience metrics: correspondents who are 1) data-driven; 2) data informed; and 3) data denialists. The article discusses the implications of these approaches for the media image of Africa that is distributed around the globe.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in African Journalism Studies on 20 Dec 2015, available online: http://wwww.tandfonline.com/10.1080/23743670.2015.1119487
Uncontrolled Keywords: Africa, audiences, international news, metrics, news production, readership data, search engine optimisation
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Divisions: School of Arts > Department of Journalism
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/13390

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