Prior OsloMet Focus Seminars

På denne siden kan du lese mer om avholdte seminarer ved forskningsgruppen for Digital journalistikk.


“Journalistic deskilling and a call for a new journalism”, Rich Ling, desember

Rich Ling (Ph.D., University of Colorado, sociology) is the Shaw Foundation Professor of Media Technology, at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Ling studies the social consequences of mobile communication including how it facilitates microcoordination, how it has been adopted and used by teens in Norway and the US, its role in the diffusion of news (and fake news), and how it is used by small-scale entrepreneurs in places such as Cote d’Ivoire and Myanmar. He has also examined how it illuminates more fundamental social forces such as strong-tie bonds and triadic interaction and how mobile communication is increasingly being structured into the social fabric. Ling has written/edited 11 books and over 100 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters. His single-author books include The mobile connection (Morgan Kaufmann, 2004), New Tech, New Ties (MIT, 2008) and Taken for grantedness (MIT, 2012) a book that received a complimentary review in the journal Science. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, a founding co-editor of Mobile Media and Communication (Sage), a founding co-editor of the Oxford University Press Series Studies in Mobile Communication. He was recently named a fellow of the International Communication Association (ICA). Also, he is the chair of the ICA Mobile Communication Interest Group.


I have worked in the area of mobile communication and journalism for the last years. I have a long history of studying the social consequences of mobile communication stretching back to the mid 1990’s. In addition, for the last few years I have led a project on the future of journalism as it faces the transition to mobile platforms. This was the “Personal Portable Information Devices (PPIDs) project, which was funded by the Singaporean Ministry of Education that had a budget of approximately 1.68 million NOK. One of the main findings of this project is that the traditional distribution chains associated with legacy journalism are under siege. Rather than subscribing to a news source, many people are simply getting their news via social media. This means that the gatekeeper role of legacy news is being replaced. It means that our sharing of news stories with our social media sphere has become our access point to news. It also means that the role of the journalist, and the professional criteria upon which this rests, is being eroded. In short the news industry is facing an unprecedented transition. There are technical transitions (digitalization and AI), the notion of the profession is being questioned, the legitimacy of the institution is in question (viz. President Trump’s continued attacks), etc. Given this, there is the need to carefully think about the broader role of journalism in society. There is the need to think beyond the definition of the profession. In this work I propose to examine the broader social function of news and how to pursue that in the new technical environment. While there is a stark need for a Jeffersonian “enlightened electorate,” robust civic information, and a population that engages in this information, there is also the distinct possibility that we are moving in the direction of a “bread and circus” development. I am interested in taking some time to think about these issues and to consider what a new journalism would include.

“Journalism under threat: Towards a systematic investigation of journalists’ perceptions of risk in 110 countries”, Vera Slavtcheva-Petkova og Thomas Hanitzsch, 8. november

Thomas Hanitzsch is Chair and Professor of Communication in the Department of Communication Studies and Media Research at LMU Munich, Germany. A former journalist, he focuses his teaching and research on global journalism cultures, war coverage, celebrity news, and comparative methodology. He was Editor-in-Chief of Communication Theory (2011-2015), and has co-edited The Handbook of Comparative Communication Research (Routledge, 2012), and two editions of The Handbook of Journalism Studies (Routledge, 2009/2019). His most recent book is Worlds of Journalism: Journalistic Cultures Around the Globe (Columbia University Press, 2019). He is founder and chair of the Worlds of Journalism Study, a multinational and collaborative endeavor to trace journalism’s transformation around the world.

Dr Vera Slavtcheva-Petkova is Senior Lecturer in Communications and Media Studies at the University of Liverpool, UK. Vera joined the University of Liverpool in September 2017 after having worked at the University of Chester and the Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford. Her undergraduate degree is in Journalism and Mass Communication from the American University in Bulgaria and her MA is in the European Union: Media, Politics and Society from the University of East Anglia. She completed her PhD in the Social Sciences at Loughborough University in 2011. Her PhD thesis was about Children, Europe and the media. Vera is the author of Russia’s Liberal Media: Handcuffed but Free (Routledge, 2018) and Global Journalism: An Introduction (Palgrave, 2018; with Professor Michael Bromley, Sheffield University). Vera sits on the Executive Committee of the Worlds of Journalism study – a ground-breaking academic project assessing the state of journalism in 67 countries in the second wave (2012-2016), and 110 countries in the forthcoming third wave (2020-2022). Vera is also Regional Coordinator for Central and Eastern Europe, and Chair of the Journalists’ Safety Working Group. She is Book Review Editor of the European Journal of Communication. Vera’s research areas are: 1. Global and international journalism with a focus on Russia and Eastern Europe. 2. Children, young people and the media. 3. Nationalism, banal Europeanism and the media. 4. The Internet’s role in relation to: a) risks and opportunities for young people, and b) democratic deliberative potential with a focus on online comments. Vera has published her research in leading journals in the field such as Ethnicities; Information, Communication & Society; International Journal of Press/Politics; International Journal of Communication; Journalism; Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly; Journal of Children and Media; Journalism Studies; and YOUNG. Vera previously worked as European editor for the second biggest-selling newspaper in Bulgaria – 24 Chasa.


Journalists, news organisations and the institution of journalism face increased levels of risk and uncertainty to the extent that scholars started proclaiming the ‘death’ or ‘end’ of journalism (Charles & Stewart, 2011; McChesney & Nichols, 2010). While there are numerous studies investigating different aspects of risks and uncertainty, there is no study or approach that systematically, and comparatively, investigates risks and uncertainly in journalism on the level of perception. This is a gap that the third wave of the Worlds of Journalism Study (WJS) aims to fill. WJS is an ongoing collaborative project assessing the state of journalism around the world. The second wave (2012-2016) of the study has covered 67 countries, and the forthcoming third wave (2020-2022) is going to include more than 110 countries. Based on a literature review, we argue that risks emanate from four interrelated sources: politics, economy, technology, and culture. Political risks include the increase in hostility towards journalists both in authoritarian regimes and liberal democracies, which has contributed to a decline in press freedom. Safety threats against journalists, including those perpetrated in the online space, have also increased across different contexts. Economic risks stem from increased economic pressures on news organizations as a result of, among others, economic downturn, the collapse of journalism’s traditional business model, and changes in the economics of news production brought about by the advent of the Internet. The changing digital environment, with a crucial role of social media platforms, constitutes a new risk critical to journalism’s future. Technological risks are linked to new potentials for public participation and new types of actors in communication processes, such as algorithms and social bots. These changes have contributed to a networked news ecosystem that gives political, commercial and other entities the opportunity to bypass journalism and to address audiences directly. This in turn has led to an erosion of professional journalism’s power as an intermediary institution (Vos, 2019). Cultural risks, finally, relate to the erosion of public support for the press and the rise of hate groups that target journalists in many countries. In order to capture a range of risks journalists face around the world, the third wave of WJS will include a question measuring journalists’ perception of the degree of media freedom in their countries as well as a series of questions on journalists’ safety. We conceptualize safety as three-dimensional, encompassing physical, psychological/emotional, and occupational aspects. While digital safety is an important dimension of safety, we will not treat it separately. Journalists will be asked to indicate how safe they feel in their work as well as whether they have experienced a range of threats in their work – from physical attacks and sexual harassment to threatening messages and cyberattacks. Our approach to measuring risk and uncertainty is holistic; we account not only for the different types of risks but also for the interrelation between risks, threats, and journalists’ resilience and, consequently, their ability to serve the societies they work in. Our presentation is a welcome opportunity to solicit preliminary feedback on our approach and measures, which will allow us to further improve our research tools.

“The New Frontline: Female Journalists at the Intersection of Converging Digital Age Threats”, Julie Posetti, 8 november

The New Frontline: Female Journalists at the Intersection of Converging Digital Age Threats Three of the most urgent safety and security threats confronting Digital Age journalism are converging, and female journalists are at the epicentre of risk. These convergent threats can be identified as follows: gendered online harassment; orchestrated disinformation campaigns; and privacy erosion. In this paper/presentation, I will extrapolate and synthesise findings from a body of original research on these themes that I have produced for UNESCO (Posetti 2017; Posetti 2017a; Posetti 2018; Posetti & Storm 2019), the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at the University of Oxford (Posetti, Simon and Shabbir 2019); and the NGO Blueprint for Free Speech (Posetti, Dreyfus and Colvin 2018) over the past five years as these risks have begun intersecting and overlapping. The risks to be examined range from pernicious, gendered online harassment to overt, targeted attacks that frequently involve threats of sexual violence. Increasingly, they also include digital security breaches from the exposure of identifying information (exacerbating offline safety threats and risking the exposure and targeting of confidential sources), to malicious misrepresentation using Artificial Intelligence technologies. The objective will be to demonstrate the impacts of these overlapping safety and security threats faced by female journalists working in digital contexts – risks that manifest both online and offline, and extend to the journalists’ sources and audiences. Additionally, I will suggest a range of recommendations for action by states, the news industry, academia and civil society organisations based on this analysis. Early research highlighting the misogynistic nature of harassment experienced by women bloggers in the pre-social media era serves as a beacon for the rampant cyber-misogyny now experienced by women journalists in the age of ‘social journalism’ (Filipovic 2007; Seelhoff 2007; Citron 2009). The expectation that journalists be actively embedded on social platforms like Facebook and Twitter to facilitate the direct audience engagement that is now integral to journalistic research, production and content dissemination (Posetti 2013) has placed female journalists on the frontline of a massive problem. In addition to threats of sexualised violence – including rape and murder – the ‘pile on’ effect (organic, organised, or robotic mass attacks against a person online) worsens the impacts of online harassment experienced by female journalists, a burden they increasingly share with their female audiences and sources. Another hallmark of this online abuse of women media workers (and others producing verifiable information in the public interest across a range of digital platforms) is the use of disinformation tactics – lies are spread about their character or their work as a means of undermining their credibility, humiliating them, and seeking to chill their public commentary and reporting. In some instances, journalists have been targeted in acts of ‘astroturfing’ and ‘trolling’ – experienced as deliberate attempts to “mislead, misinform, befuddle, or endanger journalists” (Posetti 2013). In other cases, they face cyberattacks designed to reveal their sources, breach their privacy to expose them to risk, identify their sources, or access their unpublished data through phishing (King 2014), doxing , malware attacks, and identity spoofing . More recently, computational propaganda (Woolley & Howard 2017) has increased the risks for journalists dealing with ‘astroturfing’ and ‘trolling’. This involves the use of bots to disseminate well-targeted false information and propaganda messages on a scale designed to look like an organic movement. Frequently, these attacks have involved gendered elements and threats of sexual violence. Concurrently, AI technology is being leveraged to create ‘deepfake’ porn videos and other forms of content designed to discredit women journalists. A trend has also emerged involving the specific targeting of women journalists by state and corporate actors engaged in ‘disinformation wars’ deploying the tactics described above (Posetti 2018). Case studies to be cited in this paper/presentation (drawing on dozens of research interviews with relevant actors) include: The targeting of Independent Philippines news site and its largely female staff in a campaign of prolific online abuse that began in 2016 in connection with an ongoing state-sponsored disinformation campaign that has included digital security attacks on Rappler as well as threats of violence and sexual assault against its staff. Rappler’s CEO and Executive Editor Maria Ressa has become an international leader in the fightback against the problem (Posetti 2017a; Posetti, Simon & Shabbir 2019) A wealthy family, accused of capturing key state enterprises and politicians in South Africa, hired UK Public Relations firm Bell Pottinger to devise an elaborate propaganda campaign. It spread its messages via a ‘fake news’ empire involving websites and a paid twitter army which targeted journalists, business people and politicians with abusive, hostile messages and photoshopped images, designed to humiliate and discredit. Prominent editor Ferial Haffajee (along with her Daily Maverick colleagues) was targeted in a campaign of online harassment during this period, which saw her image manipulated to create false impressions of her character, alongside deployment of the hashtag #presstitute (Posetti 2018; Posetti, Simon & Shabbir 2019 ). The case of journalist Rana Ayyub elicited a call in 2018 from five United Nations special rapporteurs for the Indian government to provide protection, following the mass circulation of false information online designed to counter her critical reporting. The independent journalist was on the receiving end of disinformation about her on social media, including ‘deepfake’ videos , as well as direct rape and death threats (OHCHR 2018; Ayyub 2018). The UN experts cited the murder of Indian journalist, Gauri Lankesh, following death threats in September 2017 and called on India to act to protect Ayyub, stating: “We are highly concerned that the life of Rana Ayyub is at serious risk following these graphic and disturbing threats.” Similar threats were experienced by female journalists working at Indian digital news site The Quint in the context of disinformation connected to Hindu Nationalism and Modi populism Finnish investigative journalist, Jessikka Aro, is the ongoing target of ‘troll factories’ in a campaign that began in 2014. She has experienced disinformation attacks, along with digital safety threats including spoofing and doxing: “…propagandists started to spread fake information about me in Russian information spaces. I was framed as some kind of foreign agent or foreign spy. My contact information was put online along with that disinformation,” she told the BBC (BBC Trending 2017)

“Whose speech? The demonization of journalism and online harassment of reporters”, Silvia Waisbord, 7. november

Silvio Waisbord is Professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University. He has served as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Communication and The International Journal of Press/Politics. He is Fellow of the International Communication Association. His most recent book is Communication: A Post-Discipline (Polity, 2019) and his next book is The Communication Manifesto (Polity, 2019).


This presentation offers a reflection on what online harassment of reporters tells us about public speech. Growing levels of attack against journalists have been recorded around the world. Reporters working on hot-button issues that anchor specific political identities, especially right-wing causes, have been primary targets. I argue that this trend is closely linked to the demonization of journalists and the press by populist leaders and movements and the ubiquity of digital hate speech. Whereas anti-press violence in the past fundamentally reflected problems at the level of the state, namely the weakness of accountability mechanisms and authoritarianism, online harassment of reporters attests to the challenges and the consequences journalists confront when they exercise the right to speech. Journalism is a “canary in the coalmine” that constantly tests and illustrates worrisome conditions in contemporary public communication. Effective responses to online harassment are hard to come by amid the challenges posed by the collapse of the old communication order and the proliferation of public speech.

“One Journalism Crisis for All? Shattered hopes of transformation and fragile (digital) journalism futures outside Western contexts”, Hanan Badr, 6. november

Hanan Badr holds an interim professorship at the Free University in Berlin. She has a secondary appointment as an assistant professor at Department of Journalism at Cairo University. Her profile lies at the intersection of journalism & media studies; political communication and area studies with a focus on the Arab region. Her latest project “Journalism in Transformation” investigates how the political and technological ruptures affected the journalism practices in post-Arab Spring Egypt. In her previous project “Media, Functions in Transition”, funded by the German Research Council DFG, she compared the interplay between the new media and the overlooked ‘old’ media in building the agenda for marginalized publics in North Africa before the 2011 uprisings. Building on postcolonial theory, her research develops a non-Western gaze onto journalism and media and aims at producing authentically informed knowledge on the Global South. Her fields include Journalism and Arab Spring, media & transformation, comparative media systems and Internet and Public sphere. Hanan obtained her doctorate degree (Dr. phil.) from Erfurt University, in Germany, on Framing terrorism in German and Egyptian print media discourses, and published it as monograph with Springer Verlag ( She had her M.A. and B.A. at Cairo University at the Department of Journalism.


Considering the structural and digital transformation of the public sphere established rules of the profession and financial viability models seemed shaken, yet new rules in the digital news ecology are not clear yet. In societies where journalism has had different sets of crises, including struggles for freedom but also fragmentation of the professional community itself, in addition to the uncertain new trends in digital journalism we need to reconstruct the meaning of journalism crisis, as journalists themselves see it. The paper brings in important inputs to rethinking (digital) journalism in a non-Western context. By expanding the matrix of the journalism crisis to an international different setting, this study follows the theoretical lens that views the dimensions of media systems (Hallin and Mancini, 2004; Hafez, 2002; Quandt & Sheufele, 2011). Semi-structured interviews answer the central research question: how do journalists perceive the journalism crisis in a country that struggles within autocratic polarized political environments in the post-Arab Spring years? In Egypt the term ‘journalism crisis’ has severe connotations: a political tight framework and divided professional community shape the scene. Digital journalism struggles to find recognition: digital journalists are excluded from the union protection as the laws do not recognize them as true journalists. Amid rising platformization, professional and sustainable digital journalism examples are extremely rare and depend on foreign media assistance programs. Added to the socio-economic fragility, censorship, and threats for safety and freedoms, digital journalists work under higher conditions of uncertainty and political targeting. The journalistic community itself is divided on the reasons of “death of journalism”: politics vs. technology. While regime-critical voices state that freedom will save journalism practice, regime loyalist journalists attribute the crisis to the new technologies and inability to compete with the free available news online and the inability to impose ‘paywalls’ in an economically weak country as Egypt. Divisions from within and pressure from the political system make the future of (digital) journalism uncertain in Egypt.

“Journalism and innovation; approaches to data and fact-checking”, Ester Appelgren, 25. oktober

Ester Appelgren. PhD er Senior Lecturer fra Södertörn University.

My research interests focus on two main areas: data journalism and digital integrity. I study working processes, technological processes and organisational processes within media companies, and I have a special focus on media companies in the field of journalism. My research is cross-disciplinary, I believe that my research profile is positioned between journalistic production and media management and even though my research interests are currently twofold, the areas of Data Journalism and Digital Integrity complement each other. My studies in Data Journalism started in 2011 when I was the project leader of the Vinnova-funded project, “Databasjournalistik”. One year later, I remained the project manager for the project group, but extended it with a larger consortium and additional funding. The project was named “Datajournalistik”. This two-year project totalling SEK 6 million involved seven media companies (SVT, SR, Aftonbladet, SvD, Helsingborgs Dagblad, Mittmedia and NTM) and the analytics company, Sas Institute. The aim of the project was to develop, test and evaluate methods and tools for data journalism, with the overall objective of increasing knowledge and awareness among journalists and media leaders in Sweden. During and after the project, I published four peer-reviewed journal articles and one more is accepted for publication, five conference papers and five popular science contributions based on the project findings. With mixed methods such as interviews, surveys, network analysis and content analysis, I have studied the development of data journalism from a technological, journalistic and organisational perspective. Currently, I cooperate with professor Anna Maria Jönsson at Södertörn University on a study of Environmental data journalism and with associate professor Andreas Widholm at Stockholm University on a study of hard and soft news in data journalism projects. My studies in the area of digital integrity are focused on ethical challenges connected to personal data. I am currently one of three researchers in the two-year, Vinnova-funded project, Sjyst data!. We are developing a certification for processes related to the measurement of personal data. This certification will be developed in close cooperation with seven companies and three universities and and the research institute RISE. My role in this project is to test the boundaries for when the audience considers its integrity online to have been compromised in contrast to the business goals of companies collecting behavioural data and using this data as part of their business models. Theoretically, this is often referred to as the privacy paradox, but it also involves privacy by design. Furthermore, this project is focused on making sense of the change in legislation concerning personal data in the pending data protection regulation, GDPR. The project is a continuation of a previous project (Distinct) that I worked on in 2014 and 2015 and that was also funded by Vinnova. The Distinct project was focused on media consumption, digital integrity and methods to measure consumption. My participation in the two projects has thus far resulted in one peer-reviewed journal article, two book chapters and two conference papers.


Part 1: A closer look at Nordic fact checkers Fact-checking is a growing global practice where the accuracy of viral claims in the media are openly reviewed by journalists in order to detect false claims. In 2017, as a response to the growth of what is often denoted as fake news, an organization called IFCN (International Fact Checkers Network) was established at the Poynter Institute in the USA. This organization has since empowered fact-checking organizations around the world by establishing a code of principles to guide fact-checking organizations toward best practice, primarily in terms of nonpartisanship, fairness and transparency. During this session, Ester Appelgren, Associate Professor of Journalism and one of the 88 international external assessors of the IFCN, presents the code of principles from the perspective of the external assessor. She will show examples of how Nordic Fact Checkers meet the twelve criteria in terms of best practice, but she will also touch on mistakes that can lower the credibility of fact-checking organizations with their audience. Part 2: Fellow Focus Seminar: Seven years of Nordic data journalism — pro-innovation bias and critique The transition toward a digital media landscape is often said to increase the interaction possibilities for those with access to the web and the needed skills. Seven years ago, data journalism was still in its infancy in Nordic newsrooms. Back then, it was ascribed features such as a high level of interactivity, user participation, multimodality, interconnected processes and more choices for the audiences compared to more static forms of reporting. As the years have passed, data journalism has been recognized as a practice that has changed newsroom culture and journalistic working methods. Summarizing the research on data journalism, Hermida and Young (2019) determines that the scholarly attention has mostly revolved around data journalism as a process and seeks to detail the routines, roles, and responsibilities of the actors involved (23). Studies based on content analysis of data journalism have also found that data journalism is a practice that can enhance stories with visualizations while simultaneously enabling journalists to incorporate data sources as primary sources (Stalph 2017). The introduction of data journalism in Nordic newsrooms has changed the media landscape and can be viewed as a technological innovation that has brought not only uncertainties but also media leadership to journalism. Today, journalists struggle to remain in control, creating linear pre-packaged content flows rather than providing the interactivity and user participation that data journalism is famous for (Appelgren 2018). Similarly, media leaders consider innovations such as data journalism to be a strength at media companies, even though innovation work may still stand in contrast to the institutional perspective. This session focuses on the development of data journalism in the Nordic region from 2011 to the present, from the initial pro-innovation bias that comes with the introduction of something new in the newsroom to the current critique that unsolved challenges still restrain the potential of data journalism as a form of interactive investigative reporting serving democracy.

Les mer om Ester Appelgren i oversikten over Research Fellows.

“Journalistic Authority in Transition: Changing Modes of Doing and Thinking About Journalism”, Matt Carlson, 23. oktober

Matt Carlson er førsteamanuensis ved Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Minnesota.

Matt Carlson is an associate professor at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota, USA. He teaches and researches in the area of media and journalism studies, and his work examines public discourse about journalism, with an interest in the cultural construction of journalistic norms and practices. He is author of Journalistic Authority (Columbia University Press, 2017) and On the Condition of Anonymity: Unnamed Sources and the Battle for Journalism (University of Illinois Press, 2011). He is co-editor with Bob Franklin of the edited volume Journalism, Sources, and Credibility: New Perspectives (Routledge, 2011), and co-editor with Seth Lewis of the volume Boundaries of Journalism (Routledge, 2015). In addition, his work has appeared in the Journal of Communication, New Media & Society, Communication Theory, Critical Studies in Media Communication, Journalism, Journalism Studies, Journalism Practice, Digital Journalism, and several others. Carlson is past chair of the Journalism Studies division of the International Communication Association.


This talk examines the present condition of journalistic authority in light of recent technological developments that alter what journalism can do. It is premised on a relational perspective of authority that stresses contingency and dynamism. When news practices change, how journalism is thought about – its imagined possibilities and constraints—come to be rethought. The value of this perspective lies in how it attunes both scholars and practitioners to the relationship between structures and ideas (rather than assuming one has determining power over the other). Drawing on recent research, journalistic authority is explored through two key divides: objectivity/subjectivity and distribution/circulation. Debates over journalistic objectivity are long-running, with the epistemic and symbolic value of objectivity as a legitimating discourse rising and sinking over time. Much of the scholarly and professional discussion of objectivity occurs at the level of normative ideals, but we also need to appreciate how shifts in technology have an effect on understandings of what is possible. This section of the talk narrows in on the objectivity/subjectivity distinction through two sets of journalistic technology: photojournalism and algorithms. The development of new technologies shifts ways of thinking across journalism, including foundational arguments that inform journalistic authority. The second divide this talk engages is between distribution and circulation. Under a mass communication model, news dispersal is primarily a model of distribution from the center out to the periphery. Knowledge travels outward, empowering journalistic organizations to shape the conditions through which news is consumed. This model still exists, but digital media present a competing set of flows that can best be described as circulation – a network of flows not so hierarchically arranged. The result is a “dislocation of news journalism” (Ekström and Westlund, 2019) fueled by practices of news sharing and commentary, algorithmic selection practices, and rise of platforms as news intermediaries. Circulation is discussed both in the transmission sense of how messages travel but also in an epistemological sense of how news texts come to have and affect shared meanings. Ultimately these two examples demonstrate that understandings of journalistic authority have to account for both new media structures and the new ways of imagining how journalism works that develop around these technologies. This recognition allows for a clearer view of the implications of these shifts for journalism theory and practice as we try our best to make sense of a fast-moving target of inquiry.

Utvalgte publikasjoner

Carlson, M. (2019). Journalistic epistemology and digital news circulation: Infrastructure, circulation practices, and epistemic contests. New Media & Society, forthcoming. Carlson, M. (2019). News algorithms, photojournalism and the assumption of mechanical objectivity in journalism. Digital Journalism, ahead-of-print. Carlson, M. (2019). Fake news as an informational moral panic: The symbolic deviancy of social media during the 2016 us presidential election. Information, Communication, & Society, ahead-of-print. Carlson, M. & Lewis, S.C. (2019). Journalism and boundary work. In K. Wahl-Jorgensen & T. Hanitzsch (Eds.), Handbook of Journalism Studies: Second Edition (pp. 123-135). London: Routledge. Carlson, M., Robinson, S., Lewis, S.C., & Berkowitz, D. (2018). Journalism studies and its core commitments: The making of a communication field. Journal of Communication, 68(1), 6-25.

“Investigating Algorithmic Content Curation in an Age of Polarization”, Mario Haim, 10. oktober

“Journalism outside in: A memoir of power, authority and identity”, Alfred Hermida, 10. oktober

Mario Haim is a communication scholar with a background in informatics at the University of Stavanger.

Haim mainly focuses on journalism studies but also reaches out to political communication and health communication, yet almost always with a strong emphasis on computational communication research. As such, he has conducted studies on automated journalism, the diffusion of online news, influences of audience analytics on digital journalism but also on political informationseeking, the provision of digital health information, as well as on computational methods. Mario gained his PhD at LMU Munich in 2018 with a dissertation on the influences of audience analytics on various news outlets. He studied Communication in Augsburg, Munich, and Helsinki, and he also holds a vocational degree in Information Science. In 2016, he was a visiting scholar to Columbia’s Tow Center and in 2015, he served as guest lecturer to the University of Southern Denmark. Currently, Mario Haim is a postdoctoral fellow to the University of Stavanger.


Investigating Algorithmic Content Curation in an Age of Polarization. Computational journalism, that is, the „finding, telling and dissemination of news stories with, by, or about algorithms” (Diakopoulos & Koliska, 2017, p. 810), has gained lots of traction over the last couple of years. Phenomena, such as automated journalism, the influence of audience analytics, filter bubbles and echo chambers, the diffusion of so-called “fake news,” or the use of news within algorithmically curated information environments have driven both public debate and academic research. Circling around theoretical ideas of personalization and polarization, datafication and algorithmic curation, this presentation will try to summarize current findings and pinpoint academic shortcomings within the broad and fragmented field of computational journalism. To account for the current theoretical streams of thought and findings on the one hand, but also for the methodological challenges in this field on the other, the presentation will be twofold. Both parts (approximately 45 minutes each) will stand for themselves with several links between them. Moreover, both parts will not require previous knowledge. The first part will provide an overview of the status quo of computational journalism and give a thorough summary on ongoing research endeavors toward personalization and polarization of online news and online news consumption. Building upon a variety of angles, the presentation will give a literature review, identify current shortcomings, and lay out a plan for a new research project that tries to incorporate aforementioned findings and challenges. The second part will put a strong focus on methodological enquiries into algorithmically curated information environments, Mario Haim, oktober 2019such social media, news aggregators, or search engines. Challenged by increasingly personalized information environments and uncooperative intermediaries, possible methodological approaches will be presented and discussed, including but not limited to API access, web scraping, agent-based testing, and computational observation. The presentation will end by presenting a roadmap for a robust and professionalized, open and connectable computational communication research.

Les mer om Mario Haim i oversikten over Research Fellows.

“Journalism, place, space and territory in digital times”, Kristy Hess, 26. september

Presentation by Kristy Hess, Deakin University, Australia

Moderator: Oscar Westlund, professor, Department of Journalism and Media Studies, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University

The presentation is part of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Focus Seminars, organised by the research group Digital Journalism.

Dr Kristy Hess is an Associate Professor at Deakin University, Australia who research focuses on the role and place of local media in a digital era. She also examines the geographies of journalism in terms of media’s relationship to boundary maintenance, place-making and power. She is the co-author of two books Local Media in the Digital World (Palgrave) and Geographies of Journalism: The imaginative power of place in making digital news (Routledge) and is widely published in leading international journals in media and communications. She has won a national award for her role in bridging the teaching/research nexus in journalism theory and practice and is the academic director of the largest industry/university partnership in Australia to educate working journalists in rural and regional areas. Kristy also serves as associate editor of Digital Journalism .


This presentation argues for the study of place, space and territory as a necessary trichotomy in studies of journalism in the digital age. Spaces become places when bestowed with meaning or significance by those whom engage with them – that much we have learned from interdisciplinary studies from cultural geography to urban development, media studies, philosophy and sociology. Our sense of place, meanwhile, is often strongly associated and linked to physical surroundings, to people, even objects, artifacts and digital sites – it is a deep feeling of comfort, ease and familiarity or a connection we can’t always explain. When such feelings and actions become deeply internalized, there is significant advantage to those whom are considered custodians of or hold influence over such places – in fact particular individuals and institutions, including news media, are expected to perform this role. To dominate or hold power in place means we must examine space, place and territory as a necessary trichotomy. It is surprising this has not been as clearly positioned before in the literature on digital journalism, especially given that media territories are being carved out in online spaces at a rapid pace. There are constant symbolic battle lines being drawn by news outlets over their perceived legitimacy to serve, define, patrol, defend or protect their own interests and ultimately those of a given space/place or what we have previously termed as news zones. The connection between media and territory has a rich scholarly underpinning, especially when it comes to exploring the news media’s symbolic power to construct reality and our perception of geographic territory, from ideas of nationalism to our ‘sense of community’ that plays out across macro and micro levels of society. It is well documented that news media too can be used as a tool of influence within the political field to relay propaganda in order to reinforce or assert territorial boundaries. At times there can even be tensions between the state and news media in patrolling and defining cultural boundaries within and across geographic territories, especially during moments of crisis such as terrorism or political events like Brexit. In this presentation, I will argue, that news media territories emerge when there is a taken for granted assumption that certain media spaces and places are seen to represent collective ideas or values and enact rules, norms and ritualistic behavior, ultimately leading to a binary between insiders and outsiders. For media territories to exist, however, people must believe – albeit subconsciously – that certain media agents have the power to indeed lay claim to such places and spaces. Consequently, we must not see territory as natural, but cultural – a social product linked to desire, power, and identity. A media power position is useful here because discussions of space and place raise questions about the organization of media territories themselves, the unevenness and the distances they involve and the moments when media power is contested. It will outline the interdependence between place and media territory, drawing on exemplars from local media and critically engaging with the uber territorial battle between news media and social media juggernaut Facebook over news territory.

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“The manipulated society: Research findings on the content, actors and effects of online propaganda”, Thorsten Quandt, 29. august

Presentation by Dr. Thorsten Quandt, Professor and Chair of Online Communication at the University of Munster.

Moderator: Oscar Westlund, professor, Department of Journalism and Media Studies, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University.

The presentation is part of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Focus Seminars, organised by the research group Digital Journalism.

Prof. Dr. Thorsten Quandt, Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Münster. He was holding the Chair of Online Communication and Interactive Media at the University of Hohenheim from 2009-2012, where he also served as the Director of the Institute of Communication Studies in 2012. From 2007-2008, he was an Assistant Professor of journalism research at the Free University Berlin, where he also served as a Guest Professor in 2006. Furthermore, he has been working as a lecturer and researcher at various other universities, including the LMU Munich, the Berlin University of the Arts, and the Technical University Ilmenau. He was also a visiting professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford and Stanford University, and a visiting scholar at the Indiana University, Bloomington. He has (co)published more than 100 scientific articles and several books. His work was awarded with several scientific prizes, including various Top Paper Awards and the dissertation award of the DGPuK. He’s currently an Associate Editor of the Journal of Communication, and an Executive Board Member of ECREA. His research and teaching fields include online communication, media innovation research, digital games and journalism.


In recent years, the debate on social media use and other participatory formats (for example in online journalism)has changed dramatically: While user engagement was regarded to be a positive development somewhat more than a decade ago, it now seems as if the Internet is an unfriendly place, full of hate and populist interventions. While these negative descriptions are largely overstated in light of an abundance of research in the field, it still has become obvious that indeed, numerous groups try to strategically influence the online debate for their own interests. These groups typically act in covert way, disguising their identity or goals, and in general, they are trying to alter the perception of majorities and group opinions. Anecdotal evidence and press coverage point to various actors, like companies and firms, religious and right-wing political actors, ideologically extreme groups (conspiracy theorists etc.) and even nations states. While the former follow primarily economic goals (which has been covered under the label “astroturfing” or “black hat marketing”), the others often have political and ideological motives with the goal of changing open democracies and their functioning. While the latter groups’ actions triggered a lot of public interest and recent research activities, empirical findings are still scarce. In an on-going large-scale project funded by the German Ministry of Research, we focus such political and ideological forms of online propaganda. The project includes partners from information systems, cyber Security and communication research, as well as industry partners from journalism (Süddeutsche Zeitung, Spiegel). In the project, we focus on hidden propaganda that primarily uses social media channels (like Facebook or Twitter) or piggy-backs on journalistic forums, so we deliberately exclude cloaked websites or related forms of online communication where the actors directly and fully control the propaganda channel. In short, the Focus of our project is on sinister forms of ‘parasitic’ propaganda. Main sub-projects include content analyses of Twitter, Facebook and journalistic forums, as well as interviews and surveys with journalists and online users. Furthermore, the project has a strong method development component, as the large-scale Twitter tracking and the content analysis of the Spiegel Online Forum (the biggest in Germany) require automated or semiautomated forms of content analysis, including sentiment analysis, topic modeling, named entity recognition, and other forms of text classification and natural language processing. In the presentation, I will offer insight into some of the empirical findings of this project, primarily with regards to the role of journalism. For the survey part, I will focus on questions like: How do journalists perceive this form of manipulation? Do that have day-to-day experience, and if so, how do they cope with the issue? With respect to the content analyses, I will answer question like: Is there proof for the actions of propagandist groups? Can we track their actions in the material, and if so, what kind of interventions can we find there? If there is interest, I will also comment on ways to do this type of work using computer support and automated content analysis.

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“Tools of Disinformation: What Factors Enable Fake News to Deceive”, Edson C. Tandoc Jr., 3. juni

Presentation by Edson C. Tandoc Jr., Associate Professor Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information Nanyang Technological University. 
The presentation is part of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Focus Seminars, organised by the research group Digital journalistikk (no).

Edson C. Tandoc Jr. (Ph.D., University of Missouri) is an Associate Professor at the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. His research focuses on the sociology of message construction in the context of digital journalism. He has conducted studies on the construction of news and social media messages. His studies about influences on journalists have focused on the impact of journalistic roles, new technologies, and audience feedback on the various stages of the news gatekeeping process. For example, he has done some work on how journalists use web analytics in their news work and with what effects. This stream of research has led him to study journalism from the perspective of news consumers as well, investigating how readers make sense of critical incidents in journalism and take part in reconsidering journalistic norms; and how changing news consumption patterns facilitate the spread of fake news.


The worsening problem with disinformation, aggravated by the influx of fake news online, has prompted institutions around the world to take action. Governments have initiated legislation. News organizations have come together to fight fake news. Other organizations have launched and funded fact-checking initiatives. Technology companies, blamed for the rise of fake news, have also taken action by removing accounts that spread fake news, among other initiatives. And yet ultimately the root of the problem is: What makes people believe in fake news? The answer, unfortunately, is not simple. The production and proliferation of fake news is motivated by financial and ideological gains, and initiatives to combat fake news are not likely to stop actors with vested interests from finding new ways to spread fake news and other forms of disinformation. This is why a lot of research has focused on understanding the factors that make individuals prone to being misled by fake news, for these factors are often exploited by those behind the production and proliferation of fake news. Studies have argued that the reach of fake news, at least during the US presidential elections in 2016, was limited, with only a fraction of the population exposed to fake news posts (Allcott & Gentzkow, 2017; Nelson & Taneja, 2018). But for these people who have been fooled by fake news, the effects are real: For example, a man opened fire at a pizzeria in Washington DC on 4 December 2016 after reading a viral and false conspiracy story that identified the pizzeria as the site of an underground child sex ring ran by then presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and her former campaign manager, John Podesta (Lopez, 2016). In India, fake news posts spreading on the messaging app WhatsApp have been blamed for numerous lynching and murders of people wrongfully accused of or misidentified as kidnappers (Frayer, 2018; Safi, 2018). In a small town in Mexico, a 43-year-old man and his 21-year-old nephew were burned to death by a mob responding to a rumour that spread through WhatsApp about child abductors roaming the village (Martinez, 2018). Such unfortunate cases make it imperative for us to understand what makes people believe is false information. Drawing from the results of various studies conducted at Nanyang Technological University, this presentation identifies factors that make some individuals prone to believing in fake news. First, a series of focus group interviews and national surveys revealed how Singapore residents define fake news and how they respond to fake news. Second, a series of experiments tested the effects of source credibility as well as popularity cues on the extent to which individuals believe in fake news. Third, a content analysis of fake news articles also identified patterns in terms of language and structure. By bringing these studies together, this presentation identifies the combination of source, audience, and message factors that enable the spread of fake news.

Les mer om Edson C. Tandoc Jr. i oversikten over Research Fellows.

The “Infrastructural Uncanny and the Social Life of Junk News Online”, Liliana Bounegru, juni

Liliana Bounegru is a New media, digital methods and digital journalism researcher and a postdoctoral research fellow, University of Oxford, UK.

Liliana Bounegru is a new media, digital methods and digital journalism researcher and a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Oxford. She is affiliated with the Oxford Internet Institute and the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. She is part of Misinformation, Science and Media, an Oxford Martin School programme that investigates the impact of misinformation campaigns online on the public understanding of technoscientific issues. She is also a researcher at the Digital Methods Initiative (University of Amsterdam), where she previously acted as a Managing Director. She is also a co-founder of the Public Data Lab (, and a research associate at the Sciences Po Paris media lab. Her research interests include digital media, digital culture, digital journalism, inventive methods for new media research, digital methods, infrastructure studies, platform studies, issue mapping and controversy mapping. Her work has been published in New Media & Society, Big Data & Society, Visual Communication and Digital Journalism. She is co-editor of The Data Journalism Handbook (O’Reilly Media, 2012; University of Amsterdam Press, 2019), translated into dozens of languages, and co-investigator of A Field Guide to Fake News and Other Information Disorders, a multi-institutional research collaboration to trace the circulation of political misinformation, junk news and memes online (also available in Japanese).


The 2016 US presidential election has brought social media and associated phenomena such as Internet memes, “fake news” and online disinformation under intense media and academic scrutiny. Concerns have been raised about the rapid distribution of this problematic content on social media and many technological, media literacy and factchecking solutions have been proposed to curb these worrying dynamics. This talk draws on insights, concepts and approaches from science and technology studies and Internet studies to examine current debates and research around misinformation and “fake news” and challenge some of the assumptions behind them. It argues that “fake news” is not just problematic content whose rapid spread needs to be curbed, but that this phenomenon encapsulates central aspects of our digital environments and thus it provides a good opportunity to study their dynamics. More specifically, it proposes to explore the publics, modes of circulation and tracking networks in which junk news is embedded as an opportunity to reflect on how digital platforms and the dynamics that they engender participate in the production of public (mis)information. This talk draws on Research conducted across several projects with several institutions over the past couple of years, including: A Field Guide to “Fake News” and Other Information Disorders (Public Data Lab): a transnational, multi-institutional research project to understand the role of online misinformation, junk news, memes and trolling practices in past years’ elections in the US and several European countries. Misinformation, Science and Media Programme (Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford): a research project that examines the interplays between social media, news and misinformation campaigns, and their implications for the public understanding of scientific and technological issues, with a particular focus on climate change and artificial intelligence. Beyond Verification: Authentication, Authenticity and the Spread of Fake News (Digital Democracies Group, Simon Fraser University): a multi-institutional research project that aims to generate new knowledge about why and how fake news spreads. By studying the structures that foster fake news, the actions on- and off-line that shape user identity and generate trust, the algorithmic scripts that authenticate and segregate users, and the advertising models that foster outrage, it builds a multi-disciplinary and multi-modal approach to understand the impacts of emerging technologies on society, politics, culture and identity. A Digital Test of Public Facts (Centre of Interdisciplinary Methodologies, University of Warwick): the project investigates the changing nature of public knowledge formation in digital societies and develops inventive methods to capture and visualise knowledge dynamics online.

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“Data for social change: literacy, champions and communities”, Eddy Borges-Rey, juni

Eddy Borges-Rey is a Senior Lecturer in Journalism Studies, and the Associate Dean for Research in the Faculty and Arts and Humanities at the University of Stirling. He is also the Programme Director of the MSc. Media and Communications Management in Vietnam (Stirling-Vietnam National University).

Eddy Borges-Rey is a Senior Lecturer in Journalism Studies, and the Associate Dean for Research in the Faculty and Arts and Humanities at the University of Stirling. He is also the Programme Director of the MSc. Media and Communications Management in Vietnam (Stirling-Vietnam National University). Overall, his research looks at the interplay between media, technology and power, particularly around issues in Data Journalism, Open Data, Big Data, Social Computation, Critical Data, Code and Algorithm Studies, AI and automation, Freedom of Information, Mobile Journalism, Innovation, Photojournalism, and Data Literacy. He has taught Journalism Studies, Production and Media Studies in Venezuela, Spain, Vietnam and the UK, and as professional he has worked as a journalist, a broadcast producer and PR practitioner for almost 15 years.


Whilst reports on the marvels and failures of Big data populate the mainstream news agenda, citizens appear to be inadequately equipped to engage on equal terms with governments and corporations in the construction of a reality increasingly modelled by informational data. As numeracy, ability to use computers, and digital problem solving tend to be rather limited amongst adults3, a growing need for citizens to be able to understand the dynamics underpinning data is generally unfulfilled. Paradoxically, the idea of citizen empowerment through the use of ICTs remains a key objective in the era of Big data, primarily driven by expectations that new technologies and platforms will facilitate more responsive governments and provide people with access to information that will engender economic growth as well as creative and social fulfilment, especially after the launch of the Open Data Charter at the G8 summit in 2013. Despite the efforts of the G8 governments to open up their data stores for public scrutiny, the techniques and strategies used to filter databases and datasets, identify and isolate noteworthy information from numerical data, and translate mathematical abstractions into insight that informs and reinforces decisions at the different levels of society, remain generally excluded from the education system. National curricula appear to favour instrumental aspects of numeracy (Chevallard, 2013) to the detriment of the more critical approaches to data that are essential for the integral education of individuals living in our increasingly data-centric society. This paper thus seeks to outline a set of challenges that emerge when Big data is not properly contextualised in the delivery of educational strategies for the enhancement of data literacy. In this vein, this paper considers firstly the materiality of computerised data to examine its implications for data literacy. And secondly, it examines how notions of data access, data sampling, data sense-making and data collection are nowadays intermediated or contested by datafied actors and institutions, hindering the capacity of citizens to effectively understand and make better use of the data they generate or engage with. Finally, the paper will examine a number of global case studies where the figure of data champions and data communities is effectively used to counter data illiteracy.

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“Journalism, Transmedia and Design Thinking (within Mobile Devices)”, Ana Serrano, 8. april

A presentation by Ana Serrano Tellería is Associate Professor at the Journalism Faculty of University of Castilla La Mancha (Spain).

The presentation is part of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Focus Seminars, organised by the research group Digital Journalism.

Ana Serrano Tellería is Associate Professor at the Journalism Faculty of University of Castilla La Mancha (Spain) and Postdoctoral Researcher in LabCom.IFP at University of Beira Interior (Portugal), DIGIDOC at Pompeu Fabra University (Spain), IN_DIGITAL MEDIA at Carlos III University (Spain) and MESO at San Andrés University (Argentina) and Northwestern University (EEUU). She has focused her research on Cross/Multi /Transmedia Studies; On/Off Line Communication & Journalism; Design & Interfaces; Mobile Devices (& Privacy) and Performative & Visual Arts. She has 75 publications in these fields, and her latest book was ‘Between the Public & Private in Mobile Communication’ (Routledge, 2017). She has obtained relevant national and international grants and several prizes like the Extraordinary Ph.D Award due to the creativity, innovation, relevance and impact of her Ph.D and publications related. She has worked as artist-performer (actress, stage direction), cultural manager, journalist, manager of research and international cooperation projects and media consultant; activities that she keeps carrying on, specially, being consultant for media innovation laboratories. She has two Masters (full grants): Innovation Management; Theatre and Performing Arts. She has been requested as reviewer for SAGE, IGI Global, ICA, IAMCR, etc. She will be a visiting scholar from April-July 2019 at Media Studies Department in the University of Amsterdam.


Outstanding challenges in Journalism are centred on business models; changing audience’s practices; declining audiences of print sales and the access to media by its homepage; mobile first acclaimed strategies; the ever-changing algorithm parameters of Social Media that directly affect the access and distribution of media content; the increase relevance of personalization in content and channel distribution – mobile applications, podcasts, messages, newsletters, etc. (Doctor, 2016; Hazard Owen, 2016; Lichterman, 2016); the inherent and outstanding differences between media ecologies, ambient and technological environments (Wang, 2016); the need to recover core values of journalism like ethics, quality, credibility and transparency, in relation to start-ups, crowdsourcing and entrepreneurial successful initiatives; the notion of ‘news as a product’ (Bilton, 2016); and the balance between ad-blocking, native and sponsored advertising and content. Thus, essential individual traits, skills and mind-set, the future of journalism is foreseen in the form of professionals who (alone or in collaboration) are able to monetise content in innovative ways, connect to its publics in interactive new formats, grasps opportunities and respond to (and shape), its environment. Then, the abilities needed are: Produce on multiple platforms, understand the economics, build your brand, master match (filter, organize), clean and copy (curate), learn basic coding, know your audience and engage on social media (Albeanu, 2015; García, 2015b; Gourarie, 2015; Harding, 2015; Kramer, 2015; Klein, 2015; Levin, 2015; Parker, 2015; Peer, 2015; Powers, 2015; Rajan, 2015; Stern, 2015; Sterns, 2015). In this sense, transmedia narratives for journalism is an emerging field work in progress with enormous potential ahead. By adapting the Design Thinking approach to the journalism field, this research project aims to introduce a new way of examining journalism that allow to capture the affective, paradoxical and spontaneous features (Deuze, Witschge; 2015) of the emerging initiatives and the digital, mobile and online ecosystems as well as capturing the holistic experience of the user experience because it employs the principles of design both to the physical process as well as to the way of thinking to solve extraordinarily and persisting difficult challenges in a system of organizations. In the Media Life (Deuze, 2012), the Design Thinking approach would capture the specific aspects and features related to the interface design and the creation of content, genres, formats and models; the affective and rational considerations and descriptions of the media as artefacts, activities and arrangements as well as the user behaviour between actions and affordances, animations and performances (Serrano Tellería, 2016). Therefore, this approach would capture the specific aspects and features related to outstanding differences between the media ecologies and its technological environments.

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“Transnational networking and (dis-)integration among right-wing digital news ecologies in Europe and the US”, Eva Mayerhøffer, juni

Eva Mayerhøffer is Assistant Professor of Journalism at the Department of Communication and Arts, Roskilde Universitet, Denmark.

Eva Mayerhöffer is Assistant Professor of Journalism at the Department of Communication and Arts, University of Roskilde, where she is also affiliated with the Center for News Research and the Roskilde University Digital Media Lab. She holds a PhD in political communication from Freie Universität Berlin. Her research focuses on journalism cultures, comparative media studies, media and populism, alternative media, right-wing digital news ecologies and the role of elites in political communication.


The recent rise of a more networked political right-wing throughout Europe and the US has been accompanied by rapid shifts within the news media systems in which they operate and an emerging alternative digital news infrastructure through which information circulates and shared epistemologies are established. This study examines the extent to which a digital information environment on the political far-right is interconnected both within and across countries. It further explores which actors form connection nodes integrating this news ecology on a transnational scale. To do so, we investigate intra- and transnational networking structures of right-wing alternative online news sites from six Western democracies (Austria, Germany, US, UK, Denmark, Sweden) as enabled by the Web and social media platforms. Our analysis draws on hyperlink data harvested from 70 hyperpartisan right-wing news sites initially collected via the Media Cloud database, as well as via their respective Twitter feeds (via DMI-TCAT) for a period of 3 months in 2018. We conceptualize hyperlinking between them as a strategic practice of digitally connected organizational actors with the aim to enhance reputation and legitimacy. Through our comparative network analytical approach, we find that linguistic commonalities, geographical and cultural proximity, as well as a domestic political environment prone to ostracize right-wing ideologies are important context factors: In Germany, this seems to foster increased transnational connections, while in the Swedish context, the creation of tight domestic networks can be observed in which actors enhance each other’s visibility. Meanwhile, the US case features the largest and most integrated network, while providing right-wing sites in Germany or Sweden with important external reference points. Apart from direct connections, we also find a secondary network of social media platforms and mainstream news sites that are featured across countries, pointing towards important international focal points integrating this networked right-wing media sphere. (co-authored with Annett Heft, Curd Knüpfer, Susanne Reinhardt, Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society Berlin).

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“Understanding journalism without boundaries: The interlocking practices between data journalism and civic Tech”, Stefan Baack, 28. mars

Presentation by Stefan Baack, PhD, research and data analyst for the Mozilla Foundation. 

Stefan Baack’s research is broadly interested in how the growing quantification of social life intersects with democratic practices and visions. In his dissertation, he studied how data journalists and civic tech activists use and imagine data; and examined how the growing reliance on data across different sectors in society has created new entanglements between journalism and civil society. After his MA at the University of Bremen (Germany), he did his PhD at the Centre for Media and Journalism Studies at the University of Groningen (Netherlands). After his PhD, he worked as an associate researcher at the Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society and as a research fellow at the Weizenbaum Institute. Recently, he started to work as a research and data analyst for the Mozilla Foundation.


Understanding journalism without boundaries: The interlocking practices between data journalism and civic tech It is largely acknowledged that the news-making-process is shaped by “networked forces…that span multiple professional identities” (Ananny and Crawford 2015, 192–93). However, research rarely considers the reciprocal relationship between journalists and others: primarily, what is being researched are the effects of ‘outsiders’ on journalists, not whether and how journalists affect those outsiders as well. In this presentation, I will present findings from my research about the entanglements between data journalism and civic tech to argue that we need concepts and metaphors that better grasp journalism as a dynamic set of practices that crosses organizational and institutional boundaries. Civic technologists and data journalists are closely entangled with each other thanks to their shared reliance on data, overlapping skills, complementary ambitions, as well as institutional and financial support from organizations like the Knight Foundation. Using a qualitative, multi-methodological approach, I show that we can understand the entanglements between them in terms of interlocking practices. Their practices exist along a shared continuum that oscillates between facilitating (enabling others to take action themselves) and gatekeeping (being impactful and steer public debates). Depending on how much emphasis data journalists or civic technologists put on either facilitating or gatekeeping, we can identify different groups across organizational and institutional settings. Additional research comparing the relationship between data journalism and civic tech in Africa and Europe further shows how data journalists or civic technologists mutually shape each other (Cheruiyot et al. forthcoming). In contexts where data journalism is less established, civic tech organizations tend to engage more in practices of gatekeeping, while in contexts where civic tech organizations are absent, journalists might engage more in practices of facilitating. Rather than occupying distinct fields that only occasionally interact with each other around boundary objects or within special trading zones, the results show that civic technologists and data journalists continuously affect each other. Understanding how the practices of journalists are interlocking with other actors in these ways illustrates the need for a more holistic approach to the study of journalism in general, one that not only looks at professional journalists, but more broadly at the larger actor-constellations in which journalists are embedded.

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“Journalistic Heretics and Observants”, Scott Eldridge II, 27. mars

Presentation by Scott Eldridge II, Assistant Professor, Centre for Media and Journalism Studies, University of Groningen.

Scott Eldridge is an assistant professor with the Centre for Media and Journalism Studies at the University of Groningen. His research focuses on antagonistic journalistic actors and journalistic boundaries, towards advancing conceptual understanding of a changing journalistic field. His work has been published in Journalism Studies , Digital Journalism , the Journal of Applied Journalism & Media Studies , and in several book chapters. Eldridge is the author of the book Online Journalism from the Periphery: Interloper Media and the Journalistic Field (2018) and is co-editor with Bob Franklin of the Routledge Companion to Digital Journalism Studies (2017) and the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of Developments in Digital Journalism Studies (2019). He is an Associate Editor and Reviews Editor for the journal Digital Journalism , and on the editorial boards of Digital Journalism, Media and Communication , and the Journal of Applied Journalism & Media Studies . He earned his PhD in 2014 from the University of Sheffield, where his thesis explored reactions to WikiLeaks’ emergence, and its implications for the journalistic field.


In turning his attention to journalism, Bourdieu (2005) writes of a field taking shape around an idea of what it is to belong; a vision of coherence. The product of ‘actions and reactions’ between social agents, this vision shapes the field’s dimensions, allowing journalists to gauge their fitness both in terms of ‘belonging’ and in conveying a core idea of journalism to society more broadly. Building on Bourdieu’s work, this talk explores new understanding of a field stretching beyond its core. It shows where dominant visions of journalism reflecting a consolidated idea of journalism in modernity may be lingering past their prime. It also shows where journalistic ‘heretics’ who chafe against an observant orthodoxy of journalism point to a more dynamic picture of journalism unfolding in a digital age. This begins by exploring the field as born of an occupational belief system, reinforcing a picture of journalism that is agreed to even when unarticulated. Such a vision of journalism girds the journalistic doxa as a set of wink-and-nod criteria of belonging and is found in the habitus of structures and dispositions of those who have ‘regularized’ their journalistic practices to better reflect (and reinforce) coherent belonging. Thus, when we see journalists carrying out their work we can understand their actions as ‘of the field’, and as ‘reflecting the field’, and we can therefore see visions of the journalistic field as dually directed – towards peers, reinforcing coherent belonging; and towards society, engendering public assessment of journalism as distinct. By focusing on the periphery of the field, and specifically on journalistic actors who defy these dynamics, we see where ‘coherence’ in the dominant vision is viewed instead as undercutting a more complete picture of journalism. Rather than “falling into line with good form” (Bourdieu 1977: 22), ‘heretical’ actors running in opposition to journalism’s occupational belief systems have embraced a journalistic identity that is aggressive, simultaneously chastising ‘observants’ for upholding an overly narrow vision of journalism while defending their own journalistic contributions as distinct. Beginning with those producing antagonistic work at the edges of journalism’s core, this talk draws on recent research data from interviews with digital-peripheral journalists, qualitative and discourse analysis of online news content, and an innovative audience research study which uses WhatsApp as an interactive research diary to document how audiences engage with digital-peripheral journalism in their day-to-day activities. By engaging controversy at journalism’s edges through Bourdieu’s work, this talk offers a way to resolve tensions in understanding journalism at a time when agreement over what it is to belong has become elusive. It draws our attention back to the way the macrocosms of society are reiterated in the microcosms of fields – translating oppositions, antagonisms, and the rest of society’s messiness into the journalism’s own melees – and sees where concepts of fields, doxa, and habitus come into play with journalistic actors who insist they are playing the journalistic ‘game’, even as they follow a different set of rules

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“Strangers to the game: Unpacking journalism’s peripheral actors”, Avery E. Holton, 27. mars

Presentation by Avery E. Holton, Vice President’s Clinical and Translational Research Scholar in the Department of Communication at the University of Utah. Holton is an OsloMet Digital Journalism Research Fellow in March 2019.

Avery E. Holton is a Vice President’s Clinical and Translational Research Scholar in the Department of Communication at the University of Utah, where his research navigates the intersections of digital and social media, news and information, and constructs of health and identity. He concurrently serves as the Undergraduate Journalism Sequence Coordinator in the University of Utah’s Department of Communication as well as the Student Media Advisor for the University. He also serves as an appointed Humanities Scholar, working with first year students as they transition from high school into Humanities courses at the university. He was named a 2018 National Humanities Center Fellow for his work in the area of genetic information and its translation into digital and social media. This work is part of a larger collaborative project run through the Utah Center for Excellence in ELSI Research (UCEER), which is supported by a $3.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health and the National Human Genome Research Institute. Dr. Holton’s research has appeared in more than 60 journal articles and book chapters and has been presented as more than 80 studies at national and international conferences. His work has been published in Communication Theory, Mass Communication & Society, Journalism Studies, and Health Communication, among others, helping him earn Faculty Researcher of the Year in 2014 at the University of Utah and the 2018 Rising Star in the Humanities Award at Utah. His courses focus on digital and social media, innovative technology, and Journalism. He previously collaborated on an H2 Honors Fellowship with Dr. Sean Lawson, helping construct and teach multiple courses in the University of Utah’s Honor College centered on drones and emerging technology. He joined the University of Utah in 2013 after completing his doctoral dissertation as a William Powers Fellow in the College of Communication at the University of Texas Austin. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy for his work on social media and health communication as well as a Doctoral Certification for his work on disabilities studies.


Over the last two decades they have come swiftly, a multitude of strangers to journalism working with and through new and innovative technologies and challenging the authority of news organizations and journalists alike while also opening new pathways for journalism’s relevance and sustainability. Amateur journalists, bloggers, mobile app designers, programmers, and web analytics managers have joined an extensive and growing crowd of professionals who have, whether considered or not by journalists and news organizations to actually be journalists, introduced innovations into the news production process. They have challenged traditional definitions of what it means to be a journalist and to produce news while augmenting a news production and distribution process that relies more than ever on outsider perspectives to institute engaging and sustained content and content delivery (Westlund & Lewis, 2014; Lewis & Westlund, 2015a). While evidence suggests journalists are more aware of and accepting of the contributions these strangers have made (Baack, 2017), they continue to be cast as peripheral actors in journalism (Nielsen, 2012; Tandoc & Oh, 2017). This may be partly due to the ways that scholars discuss these strangers. In our broader discourse, by introducing these actors as strangers, we risk marginalizing their contributions. But as this talk contends, understanding more clearly, and more categorically, who these strangers are and how they are shaping the contours of journalism, the reluctance among journalists and media scholars to position them more squarely within the process of news production and distribution may diminish. As Vos and Singer (2016) suggest, by understanding who is creating journalism, where they position themselves within the practice, and how they are received by journalists and their audiences, a more holistic understanding of journalism’s norms and practices may emerge. By adding to the discourse surrounding journalism practice, such explorations can contribute to a clearer conceptualization of what journalism is and what it may become (cf. Carlson, 2016). This talk seeks a beginning point for such clarity through the offering of categorizations that may begin to remove the stigma of “outsider” from journalistic strangers. Taking up recent calls to consider the organizational field of journalism as one undergoing a near-continuous process of normative and productive change (Anderson & Revers, 2018; Eldridge, 2018; Ferrucci, 2017; Usher, 2016; Vos & Singer, 2016), this talks suggests that while various strangers are bringing change to journalism, their position within news production is not as dichotomously straightforward as insider/outsider or interloper/journalist. By first reviewing the state of research on innovation in journalism and its emphasis on individual actors as agents of change in terms of journalism, this talk then offers a consideration of three categorizations of journalistic strangers before discussing how these strangers may be changing current epistemologies of journalism as well as the practice of journalism itself. These categorizations provide a more systematic way of examining who exactly these strangers are and what impacts, real or potential, they may be having on the epistemology and practice of journalism. Thus, this talk provides possible means for media scholars and practitioners to unpack the complex changes journalistic strangers may have on journalistic theory and practice individually and collectively.

“Committing Acts of Journalism”, Valerie Belair-Gagnon, 27. mars

Presentation by Valerie Belair-Gagnon, Assistant Professor of Journalism Studies and Director of the Minnesota Journalism Center at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota. 

The presentation is part of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Focus Seminars, organised by the research group Digital Journalism.

Valerie Belair-Gagnon is Assistant Professor of Journalism Studies and Director of the Minnesota Journalism Center at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota. She is also an affiliated fellow at the Yale Information Society Project and affiliated with the Department of Sociology at the University of Minnesota. Prior to that, she was Executive Director and Research Scholar at the Yale Information Society Project and a fellow at the Tow Center for the study of digital journalism at the Columbia University School of Journalism. Dr. Belair-Gagnon published Social Media at BBC News (Routledge, 2015, paperback since 2017) and has been published in Digital Journalism , Journalism , Mobile Media and Communication , and Social Media + Society , among others. She has written for wider publics outside of academia such as in Nieman Journalism Lab, Columbia Journalism Review, BBC, and Medium, among others. She has also presented her work at the International Communication Association annual meeting, South by Southwest, the Online News Association, the International Journalism Festival in Perugia, among others. Her works has also appeared in international outlets including Le Devoir , Daily Mail UK , Silicon India News, The Star Tribune , and MediaShift, among others. Dr. Belair-Gagnon’s courses focuses on digital and social media, innovative technology, and journalism. She has served on the undergraduate affairs committee, graduate affairs committee and multiple departmental and College of Liberal Arts committees.


Recent years have seen a boom in media and communication studies exploring the expanding boundaries of journalism, particularly in addressing how a variety of digital actors are negotiating their boundaries with those of traditional journalism. The contours of professional journalism have substantially changed since the emergence of the internet, allowing for users not necessarily considered to be professional journalists to commit acts of journalism and be embedded in journalistic processes. From bloggers, whistleblowers, and coders to web analytics professionals and data analysis specialists, these actors have shed light on the changing practice, economics, epistemologies, norms, and ethics of the profession. To explore the changing processes of journalism, scholars have borrowed from sociological concepts, such as boundary maintenance or gatekeeping, as a way to re-define the contours of journalism as a profession, analyzing what journalism is and what it aims to achieve in society, with particular emphasis on journalists and how particular sets of strangers are coordinating their roles within news production. For example, Scott Eldridge (2018) argued that distinct sets of media outsiders, or “interlopers”, have driven fundamental changes in journalism norms and practices over the last several decades. Authors (date) further argued that such interlopers could be categorized as implicit or explicit interlopers or intralopers based on their perceived positions within the news process as well as their acts of journalism. Building on these and other studies addressing the role of non-traditional actors in journalism, this conceptual piece takes a different approach in seeking to understand how these individuals (and groups, in some cases) have been committing acts of journalism (or as Sue Robinson (2014) wrote “acts of news”), and how they may be changing journalistic practice, economics, epistemologies, norms, and ethics. This presentation borrows from recent work that have addressed how these strangers may be changing journalism (e.g., Authors, date; Eldridge, 2018). It asks more specifically: What are the underlying strangers’ practices that anchor their participation in journalism practice, economics, epistemology, norms and ethics? And how can we conceptualize how these strangers come to coordinate acts of journalism within the profession? In doing so, this presentation first situates strangers’ acts of journalism within journalistic practice, economics, epistemologies, norms, and ethics from a transnational perspective. Then, it considers these acts as part of the networked news system. The paper then proceeds by offering the argument that media and communication scholars should work to conceptualize these non-traditional journalism actors less by their self-perceptions or by labels placed on them and more by the acts of journalism they commit. Collectively, they should also be considered as part of a transnational information flow that is fundamentally changing the news process. This article has practical implications as it provides a starting point for the delineation of these actors, their acts of journalism, and their position within the news process and journalism more broadly. Conceptually, this presentation develops a vocabulary that would allow the recognition of acts of journalism on the part of non-traditional journalism actors in the changing profession of journalism with implications on news and information ecology. *This paper is written in collaboration with Professor Avery Holton, University of Utah

“New Media, New Work, and the New Call to Intimacy: The Case of Musicians”, Nancy Baym, 1. februar

Moderator: Oscar Westlund, professor, Department of Journalism and Media Studies, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University.

Nancy Baym is a Principal Researcher at Microsoft in New England and Research Affiliate in Comparative Media Studies and Writing at MIT. She began researching online fan community at the start of the 1990s, when she often had to explain the concept that networked computers were used to communicate. She’s written on how people make sense of new communication technologies and weave them into their everyday lives in her books Personal Connections in the Digital Age (Polity), now in its second edition, Tune In, Log On: Soaps, Fandom, and Online Community (Sage), and, Internet Inquiry: Conversations about Method (co-edited with Annette Markham, Sage). She’s appeared in the New York Times, the BBC, NPR, WIRED, Mother Jones, and other news outlets. A lifelong music fan and former independent-record store employee, her new book Playing to the Crowd: Musicians, Audiences, and the Intimate Work of Connection (NYU) draws on years of ethnographic participation and interviews with dozens of artists to show how social media have – and have not – changed the relationships between musicians and audiences and what that portends for workers in other fields.


The architectures and norms of new media push people toward sharing everyday intimacies they might historically have kept to close friends and family. As more people are pushed toward gig work, the original gig workers – musicians – provide an exemplary lens for exploring the implications of this widespread blurring of interpersonal communication into everyday practices of professional viability. This talk draws on her new book “Playing to the Crowd: Musicians, Audiences, and the Intimate Work of Connection”, plus nearly a decade of work on the tensions that musicians – and many others – must manage as social media platforms become integral to professional life.

Related publications

Baym, N. K. (2018). Playing to the Crowd: Musicians, Audiences, and the Intimate Work of Connection. New York University Press.
Baym, N. K. (2013). The Perils and Pleasures of Tweeting with Fans. In Twitter and Society, edited by Katrin Weller, Axel Bruns, Jean Burgess, Merja Mahrt, Cornelius Puschmann Peter Lang
Baym, N. K. (2013). Data Not Seen: The Uses and Shortcomings of Social Media Metrics First Monday 10 (October)
Baym, N. K. (2012). Fans or Friends: Seeing Social Media Audiences as Musicians Do. Participations 9(2).

“Three trends in digital journalism: Native advertising, algorithms, and gamification”, Raul Ferrer-Conill, 31. januar

Venue: Oslo Metropolitan University, Pilestredet 48, S141.

Organizer: Department of journalism and media studies.

Moderator: Oscar Westlund, professor, Department of Journalism and Media Studies, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University.

Raul Ferrer-Conill is a senior lecturer in the department of Media and Communication Studies at Karlstad University. His dissertation examines the uses of gamification in digital news outlets (expected graduation early fall 2018). He has published his work in Journalism Studies , Digital Journalism , and Television and New Media , among others. His current research interests cover digital journalism, gamification, native advertising, and processes of datafication.


Digital journalism is often concerned with novelty. New revenue models, new production dynamics, new ways to engage with the audience. Accordingly, digital journalism scholarship tends to trace lines of inquiry that respond to the fervent and rapid changes of its object of study. In an effort to better portray the contours of change within digital news media, it is perhaps more fruitful to focus on the entanglements between the past, the present, and the future of journalism. In this presentation, I discuss three research projects on three “new” trends in digital journalism: native advertising, algorithms, and gamification. These trends are adopted by news organizations as part of an overarching effort to explore the future of news. Such a broad and institutionally driven attempt to figure out how journalism will operate in the years to come assumes that these trends are new, technologically enabled, and potentially profitable. In this talk, however, I critically present these “new trends” against a historical drop. Contextualizing these trends allows for gaining a deeper understanding on the construction, adoption, and eventual outcome of such trends in digital journalism. First, I discuss native advertising, a monetizing model that has been widely adopted in news organizations in practically all Western countries, as a way to find new sources of revenues. Based on complex design and layout compositions, native advertising proposes a type of “shiny camouflage” that both signals and disguises advertising as editorial content. This is, of course, only a new iteration of old-fashioned infomercials and advertorials. However, placed in digital interfaces, they have achieved higher commercial success than most alternative digital formats. For digital journalism scholarship, native advertising raises questions of trust, legitimacy, and editorial autonomy. Second, I focus on the role that algorithms have had in newsrooms in recent years. While the image of a robotic reporter writing news has become an iconic figure in the social imaginary, fully automated news production is still distant. Algorithmic filtering of news agencies newsreels, automated audio extraction, or the automated annotation of metadata for SEO purposes are vital micro-processes in the newsroom that, while automated, still require the interaction of a newsworker. The automation of news production needs to be understood as a continuum in which smaller processes are increasingly suited with algorithmic power and in which the journalist intervenes in various degrees. I argue for addressing the trend to increase the automation of control of news production as a way to rationalize the relationship between news organizations, newsworkers, and technological innovation. Finally, I turn to gamification, defined as the use of game thinking and game design techniques in non-gaming contexts. It has been widely implemented in digital services as an attempt to attract and increase user engagement. This type of persuasive technology focuses on tracking, quantifying, and individualizing behavior, placing the user at the center of the news experience. Blurring the boundaries between games and news raises questions about the long-lasting normative separation of entertainment and news, and how it is slowly fading. This presentation engages with some of the current debates in digital journalism research, such as the focus on novelty, technology, and audience-orientation.

Les mer om Ferrer-Conill i oversikten over Research Fellows.


“Co-Constructing Journalistic Knowledge with the Audience: A Case Study of Sustained Reciprocity”, Ori Tenenboim, 19. desember

Forsker ved Center for Media Engagement og doktorgradskandidat på School of Journalism ved University of Texas at Austin, USA.

Fellow ved Digital journalistikk, desember 2018.

Ori Tenenboim is a doctoral candidate in the School of Journalism and a research associate with the Center for Media Engagement at the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests center on digital journalism, political communication, and media economics. Tenenboim examines how journalists and news organizations hybridize older and newer behaviors, norms and forms in different political and cultural contexts. He also investigates factors that contribute to different types of user engagement (e.g., commenting and sharing) with news-related content and political messages in the digital media environment. His work has been published in Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism, International Journal of Communication, Digital Journalism, and Journalism Practice. Tenenboim previously worked in the Israeli news industry, serving as the head of the news desk and a news editor at “Walla,” a popular website. His last position at “Walla” was editing a mini website that provided political coverage and analysis for the 2013 general elections in Israel.


By engaging with journalists in the networked media environment, audiences can play a role in shaping the epistemologies of journalism: how journalists know what they know, and communicate knowledge claims. While audiences have been offered opportunities to engage in news-production processes, ongoing reciprocal relationships between journalists and audiences online are rare. This research presentation will show how sustained reciprocity—mutual exchanges that occur continuously over time (Lewis, Holton, & Coddington, 2014)—takes place in a large-scale WhatsApp group opened by an Israeli journalist/blogger for her audience. Based on a study with Neta Kligler-Vilenchik (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), I will demonstrate how a continuous conversation between the journalist and her loyal audience members across the news-production process allows a continuous co-construction of journalistic knowledge. I will also discuss how such a conversation may help advance news literacy through collective interpretation and evaluation of news-related content. The online space that affords ongoing reciprocal exchanges is termed a meso-newspace, occurring between the private and public realms. The study and the presentation are intended to contribute to understanding how sustained reciprocity can be accomplished and how it can promote shared benefits for journalists and community members.

“The Place of News: Theorizing Beyond a Construct and The Case of Washington Political Journalism”, Nikki Usher, 18. desember

Amanuensis ved School of Media and Public Affairs ved The George Washington University, og gjestende amanuensis ved Universitetet i Illinois (Urbana-Champaign) sitt College of Media.

Fellow ved Digital journalistikk, desember 2018.

Nikki Usher, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor at The School of Media and Public Affairs at The George Washington University and a visiting associate professor at The University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign) in the College of Media. Her research focuses on news production in the changing digital environment, blending insights from media sociology and political communication. Her first book, Making News at The New York Times (University of Michigan Press, 2014) was the first booklength study of the US’s foremost newspaper in the Internet era and won the Tankard Award, a national book award from the Association for Education and Mass Communication in Journalism. Her second book, Interactive Journalism: Hackers, Data, and Code (University of Illinois Press, 2016), focused on the rise of programming and data journalism, and was a finalist for the Tankard Award, making Usher the first solo author to be a two-time finalist. She has been a fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a fellow at the Reynold’s Institute at the University of Missouri. She is the winner of the AEJMC Emerging Scholar Award and was named the Lillian Lodge Kopenhaver Outstanding Junior Scholar, in addition to joining the Kopenhaver Center as a leadership fellow. She is a frequent commentator on the evolving news media landscape, serving as an expert source for journalists, and, on occasion, writes commentary for industry-facing and popular press outlets. Usher received her Ph.D. and MA from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and her AB from Harvard ( magna cum laude ).


This presentation will preview a forthcoming book that focuses on the role of place in journalism, previewing a theoretical extension and a case study. When journalism studies research has looked at place, it has generally been from the perspective of how journalists create and shape the places around them. The conceit of the presentation (and forthcoming book, under contract with Columbia UP) is to flip the scholarship and the question around: how does place create journalism? Theoretically, place is discussed as both an actor/agent in the process of news construction, creating boundaries and opportunities for journalists. Place is also socially constructed, and the presentation will discuss some of the ways in which journalists engage with their built environments and their geographical locales when thinking about their work and when ultimately engaging in the routines of newswork. Drawing heavily from human geography and critical sociology, the project extends theory about place to journalism studies, and in doing so, provides a new schema for journalistic epistemology drawing from concepts of place. The role of place in making news is investigated through five different ways of thinking about place: place as a physical setting where life is lived and cultural meaning is enacted, place as structure that shapes, structures, and controls agency, place as a phenomenological, place as resource/capital, and place as scale. This talk will bring to the forefront the importance of thinking about how the affordances of place influence how journalists do their work—from how they come to decide what counts as news to the very resources that enable them to do their work. The talk will also apply this theoretical extension to a case study of regional DC journalists, or journalists who come to Washington to cover news for their “hometown” newspaper. The position of these journalists in the wider political news ecosystem is increasingly fragile, particularly as the newspapers who employ them cut back on costs, with the DC bureau seen as an easy cut when wire stories or national coverage can conceivable replace the content of these reporters. Through fieldwork conducted in the US Senate press gallery and of the US Congress, 18 interviews with DC journalists, and a cultural capital analysis of the 90 correspondents who remain in this position after cutbacks, the talk explores the nature of place as practice. When thinking about place as practice, then, I look at that intersection between the individual and the socio-structural level, invoking the idea of Bourdieu’s habitus – in this sense, someone’s tastes and dispositions, their cultural capital, their class status, their education, and more generally, the place that they occupy within the larger field of power. It is my contention that these regional journalists serve as perhaps the last crucial link between what goes on in Washington and what goes on back home, the actual embodiment of the bridge between beltway and heartland. There are three key concerns to think about how the place of Washington enables the practice of regional journalism. First, and most obviously, being in Washington allows regional journalists to witness and to watchdog from a first-hand vantage point that comes from being there. Second, there is also a more subtle way in which these regional journalists serve a critical and likely unreplaceable within the larger national political news ecology—as the stories and scandals filter up from regional journalists to national concerns. Third, there is the unique relationship that these regional journalists have with their elected officials, which generally results in greater access and more specific attention than the opportunities journalists working with national outlets get to have. Through this case, I aim to show how place can be thought of as practice and underscore the importance of centering place at the crux of our analysis of newsmaking.

“Fake news, false alarms and the future of social science research: mobile and digital communication in contemporary society”, Rich Ling, 5. desember

Dr. Rich Ling is Shaw Foundation Professor of Media Technology ved Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

Rich Ling (Ph.D., University of Colorado, sociology) is the Shaw Foundation Professor of Media Technology, at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He also works with Telenor, the Norwegian Telecommunication Operator. For the past two decades, Ling has studied the social consequences of mobile communication. He has written or edited 12 books and over 100 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters. He is the author of The mobile connection (Morgan Kaufmann, 2004), New Tech, New Ties (MIT, 2008) and Taken for grantedness (MIT, 2012). He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication , a founding co-editor of Mobile Media and Communication (Sage) and the Oxford University Press Series Studies in Mobile Communication. He was recently named a fellow of the International Communication Association.


In this presentation, I will review touch on three somewhat overlapping topics. First I will examine our work on a taxonomy of fake news based on a review of recent literature. The term has been used for some time but since the 2016 US elections, it has gained a more prominent place in public discussions. In this paper, we examine how the term has been used in academic discourse during the period between 2003 and 2017. The resulting taxonomy shows that the current definition is one of several framings that have been used. Second I will examine the role of mobile communication in the spread and verification of information associated with the January 2018 false missile alert in Hawaii. The original alert was sent via smartphones. We examine how smartphones were used in the verification/falsification of the information and how the mobile phone is a central conduit through which people dealt with kinkeeping and the expressive dimensions of the event. Finally, I will comment on how AI and machine learning will likely play into the future development of social science research.

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“Making Sense of Who and What do Journalism”, Seth C. Lewis, 2. oktober

Seth C. Lewis ergrunnlegger av Shirley Papé in Emerging Media ved School of Journalism and Communication, Universitetet i Oregon.

Seth C. Lewis , PhD, is the founding holder of the Shirley Papé Chair in Emerging Media in the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon. Before joining Oregon in 2016, he wasAssociate Professor and Mitchell V. Charnley Faculty Fellow in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities. He has also held appointments as Visiting Fellow of Yale Law School’s Information Society Project and Visiting Scholar in Science, Technology & Society at Stanford University. His award-winning research explores the social implications of media technologies for the dynamics of media work and innovation, particularly in the case of journalism and its digital transformation. His present work focuses on three areas: the interplay of humans and machines in news, such as in the rise of artificial intelligence and automation in journalism; the role of reciprocity in the changing dynamics among journalists, audiences, and communities; and the social dimensions of journalism and its boundaries. Drawing on a variety of disciplines, theories, and methods, Lewis has published some 50 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, covering a range of sociotechnical phenomena—from big data, coding, and open-source software, to social media, APIs, and digital audience analytics. Lewis is a two-time winner of the International Communication Association’s award for Outstanding Article of the Year in Journalism Studies—in 2016 for the article “Actors, Actants, Audiences, and Activities in Cross-Media News Work: A Matrix and a Research Agenda” (co-authored with Oscar Westlund), and in 2013 for “The Tension Between Professional Control and Open Participation: Journalism and its Boundaries,” as well as an honourable mention distinction in 2014 for “Open Source and Journalism: Toward New Frameworks for Imagining News Innovation.” He edited a 2015 special issue of the international peer-reviewed journal Digital Journalism on the subject of “ Journalism in an Era of Big Data,” co-edited the 2015 book Boundaries of Journalism: Professionalism, Practices and Participation (published by Routledge), and his 2012 co-authored article on journalists’ use of Twitter is the most-cited article in the 16-year history of Journalism Studies . Lewis is on the editorial board of New Media & Society, the top-ranked journal in Communication (according to Google Scholar), as well as the editorial boards of Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly , Social Media + Society , and Digital Journalism , among others. He reviews grant proposals for funding agencies internationally, and gives invited lectures at a number of leading universities. Beginning as a 16-year-old reporter for his local newspaper, Lewis previously worked as a journalist for several news organizations, including as Assistant Sports Editor at The Miami Herald . He holds a B.A. from Brigham Young University, an M.B.A. from Barry University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.


As a variety of social, political, economic, and technological influences reshape the media environment for news production and circulation, fundamental questions such as “what is journalism?” and “who is a journalist?” have become more pressing. These are questions of boundaries—of determining how journalism comes to be demarcated from non-journalism, journalists from non-journalists, and so on. Moreover, in an era of algorithms, automation, and artificial intelligence, these are also questions of human-machine dynamics—where people and computational processes intersect in determining how information is produced, circulated, and received. In this talk, I will explore a series of interdisciplinary concepts for making sense of the “social” and the “technical” in contemporary journalism, altogether considering how changing definitions, forms of work, and types of actors contribute to new understandings of news and who (or what) make it happen. In particular, I will focus on the distinct contributions of three conceptual approaches: boundaries, agents, and worlds. First, the boundary work concept from sociology and science and technology studies illuminates questions of what qualifies as journalism and who qualifies as a journalist. Second, we can strengthen analyses of boundary contests by acknowledging the role of “agents”—that is, key social actors as well as technological actants that together are enrolled in the activities of cross-media news work, or the making and moving of information in a digitally networked environment. Third, we can extend these ideas further by applying the notion of “art worlds,” famously introduced by Howard Becker in 1982, to the study of “worlds” of media work—or, in this case, the worlds of ambient, data, and algorithmic forms of journalism, each with particular yet inter-related types of coordination, conventions, and status conferral. Ultimately, by bringing together these concepts, we can point to opportunities for strengthening the study of digital journalism at macro, meso, and micro levels of concern, spanning the institutional, organizational, and individual levels of concern.

Les mer om Seth C. Lews i oversikten over Research Fellows.

“Scandinavian news ecology. The digital structures of the Scandinavian news ecology”, Helle Sjøvaag, 1. oktober

Helle Sjøvaag is professor of journalism at the University of Stavanger and project manager at the University of Bergen.

Helle Sjøvaag is professor of journalism at the University of Stavanger and project manager at the University of Bergen. Her research mainly revolves around issues concerning journalism and media structures. Sjøvaag currently manages two research projects, on diversity in the Norwegian news media landscape, and on digital news agendas in Scandinavia.


n this talk, Helle Sjøvaag will present work from an ongoing project, “Digital news agendas in Scandinavia”. The project is a Scandinavian collaboration, where the aim is to study the framework conditions of news media in the region. Given the particularities of the Scandinavian media systems, digital infrastructures, ownership, regulations and public service broadcasting are key to the investigation. As the project involves Aske Kammer at the IT University of Copenhagen and Michael Karlsson at Karlstad University as principle collaborators, a comparative methodology is central to our approach. The talk will be structured around two key contributions. Sjøvaag will first present the main findings from an analysis of the Scandinavian hyperlink news network, recently published in Digital Journalism . Sjøvaag will then introduce the framework for a follow-up study that aims to widen the scope of investigation, analyzing the Scandinavian online ‘information spheres’ as an entry point to discussing journalism’s position between the state and the market in a Nordic media welfare state context. Following the talk, we organize an internal seminar discussion from 1230 to 1330, focused on mapping Scandinavian online ‘information spheres”. The seminar discussion consists of the project members, professor Helle Sjøvaag (University of Stavanger), professor Michael Karlsson (Karlstad University), Raul Ferrer (Karlstad University), associate professor Aske Kammer (IT University of Copenhagen), Seth C. Lewis (University of Oregon), plus several members of the OsloMet Digital Journalism Research group.

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“Television news with only a smartphone and drone”, Stephen Quinn, 5. september

Stephen Quinn er professor ved Høyskolen i Kristiania.

Stephen Quinn runs MOJO Media Insights, a digital consulting business, based in Brighton in the United Kingdom. He teaches media professionals how to make broadcast-quality videos using only an iOS device, and shows media organisations how to make money from producing interactive books using iBooks Author. Dr Quinn was the digital development editor at the South China Morning Post from 2011 until 2013. At the Post he helped re-launch the site that in November 2012 won the WAN/Ifra gold medal for best news website. He moved to the UK at the end of 2013. From 1996 to 2011 Professor Quinn, an Australian, was a journalism professor in Australia, the UAE, the US and China. Between 1975 and 1995 Dr Quinn was a journalist with Australian newspapers, the Bangkok Post , the UK’s Press Association, BBC-TV, ITN, The Guardian , and TVNZ. He has published 28 books, 17 as sole author, including four digital books using Apple’s iBooks Author. His most recent print book was MOJO: The Mobile Journalism Handbook (Focal: Boston) co-written with Dr Ivo Burum. The third volume of the Asia’s Media Innovators series, Crowdsourcing in Asian Journalism , appeared in 2013, and the third edition of MOJO: Mobile Journalism in the Asian Region was published in 2012. Since 2013 Dr Quinn has produced about 300 videos using only an iOS device and taught mobile journalism in 18 countries. Examples of his videos can be found at He writes a weekly wine column syndicated to a range of daily newspapers and magazines in the Asian region. His web site is


Television news is expensive to produce. News organisations are constantly looking for ways to reduce costs. Filming, editing and producing news with only mobile phones offers one way to cut costs. Using drones controlled by mobile phones are other ways to control costs, as well as producing powerful images. In the UK where the author is based it costs about GBP 1,000 an hour to hire a helicopter. A drone can take similar images for a fraction of the cost. This presentation to OsloMet will consider the evolution of television newsgathering using only a mobile phone in a selection of European and Nordic nations. This presentation is relevant for students because it will show how it is possible for one person to set up a business creating video with only a mobile device and make programs that can be sold to broadcasters. For teachers it is relevant because it shows new ways to teach using a mobile device, and also introduces new business models for journalism.

Les mer om Stephen Quinn i oversikten over Research Fellows.

“Living the Liquid Life: Journalism at the Intersection of Gender, Professionalism and Precariousness”, Margareta Melin & Jenny Wiik, 14. juni

Margareta Melin is a senior lecturer at the School of Arts and Communication (K3), and head of research for Visual Arts at the Faculty of Learning and Society at Malmö University.

Jenny Wiik is Associate Professor at the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG) at the University of Gothenburg.

Margareta Margareta Melin is a senior lecturer at the School of Arts and Communication (K3), and head of research for Visual Arts at the Faculty of Learning and Society at Malmö University. Melin has done ethnographic studies of British and Swedish journalists focusing on professional identities and cultures, and the strategies and tactics of managing these. Jenny Jenny Wiik is Associate Professor at the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG) at the University of Gothenburg. Her area of interest is professional journalism as an ideological construct as well as a democratic institution, focusing on the development of journalistic ideals over time, internal hierarchies of the journalistic profession and the tension between autonomy and control in news work. Wiik is also Director of Master Studies at JMG and coordinating the international MA in Investigative Journalism (MIJ).


The presentation introduces a research project in development, focusing on the professional identity formation of journalists with precarious working conditions from an intersectional perspective. News industry development has led to an increasing number of journalists working on temporary contracts leading to disrupted employment security and an expanding precariat. Those journalists work under uncertain conditions, whilst being expected to show professional integrity, loyalty, and to act as watchdogs of democracy. In this tough labor market, women and young journalists seem to suffer the most. Individual characteristics interact in the construction of the power hierarchies and professional life of journalism. But what are the consequences? Is journalism closing to some groups in society? Is it becoming increasingly difficult to act in public interest? And are those two developments intertwined?

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“Leaving journalism: gendered experiences of precarity among ex-journalists in Sweden”, Henrik Örnebring and Cecilia Möller, 15. juni

Henrik Örnebring is professor of media and communication at the Department of Geography, Media and Communication, Karlstad University.

Cecilia Möller has a PhD in Human Geography and is Senior Lecturer in Tourism Studies at the Department of Geography, Media and Communication, Karlstad University.

Henrik Örnebring is professor of media and communication at the Department of Geography, Media and Communication, Karlstad University. He was previously a Senior Research Fellow at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford University. He has written widely on comparative journalism, journalism history, and journalism and technological change. His most recent book is Newsworkers: A Comparative European Perspective (Bloomsbury Academic, 2016) and he is the Editor-in-Chief of the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Journalism Studies (forthcoming from OUP, 2019). Cecilia Möller has a PhD in Human Geography and is Senior Lecturer in Tourism Studies at the Department of Geography, Media and Communication, Karlstad University. Her research interests include cross-border mobility, e.g. shopping and labour mobility in the Swedish-Norwegian border area. Her studies have focused on the conditions and effects of increasing labour mobility for men and women’s everyday lives. Dr Möller also studies tourism and disaster management and communication, having done postdoc research in Queensland, Australia on how social media is used in disaster situations for communicating with tourists.


Research on journalists and journalistic work has focused on journalists with permanent, full-time employment. Given the rapid decrease of such employment opportunities, we argue that journalism research needs to pay more attention to those who those who have had to leave their jobs and either stopped doing journalism entirely, or who have switched to a freelance career (sometimes combining journalism with other work). This category of people is at once becoming more marginalized and “the new normal” within the occupation. Based on a set of exploratory semi-structured interviews (n = 12 at the moment; in total around 40 interviews are planned) with journalists and ex-journalists who share the experience of having lost their permanent, full-time jobs, we use the concept of livelihood (rather than concepts like work, profession and occupation) to analyze issues of gender and identity in this group. The concept of livelihood highlights the shift from journalism as a job practiced exclusive of other jobs to an activity conducted alongside other income-generating activities, and makes it possible to analyze leaving the occupation from a context that incorporates the whole life situation of the respondents. This contributes to the current wave of studies of journalism and job loss by adding qualitative data about individual experiences of job loss to existing quantitative survey evidence. Furthermore , the concept of livelihood also incorporates what journalists do outside work (e.g. their lifestyles, personal networks, family situations), and how journalists negotiate their work lives and their private lives. The concept thus also provides a tool for critically analyzing the (potentially) gendered structuring of journalism as a public/private activity.

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“Algorithms and Automation in Newswork: Toward a research agenda for understanding emerging actants”, Rodrigo Zamith, 16. mai

Rodrigo Zamith is an Assistant Professor in the Journalism Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Rodrigo Zamith is an Assistant Professor in the Journalism Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His research interests lie at the intersection of journalism and technology, with a focus on the reconfiguration of journalism in a changing media environment and the development of digital research methods for social scientists. Zamith’s recent scholarship includes: “Quantified Audiences in News Production: A Synthesis and Research Agenda” ( Digital Journalism ), “A Computational Approach for Examining the Comparability of ‘Most-Viewed Lists’ on Online News Sites” ( Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly ), and “On Metrics-Driven Homepages: Assessing the relationship between popularity and prominence” ( Journalism Studies ). He is also a recent recipient of the Nafziger-White-Salwen Dissertation Award and runner-up for the Gene Burd Dissertation Award, and is an affiliate faculty member of the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Computational Social Science Institute. Zamith received his Ph.D. in Mass Communication from the University of Minnesota.


Algorithms today influence, to some extent, nearly every aspect of journalism, from the initial stages of news production to the latter stages of news consumption. While many of those algorithms are designed to merely assist human labor—sometimes intentionally and other times because of technical limitations—a growing amount of newswork is becoming automated. For example, hundreds of thousands of news articles are already produced in an automated fashion each year and headlines are optimized through automated A/B testing. Scholars have taken note of these developments and a burgeoning literature is starting to emerge. This research presentation focuses on two simple questions: What don’t we know about automation in journalism? How can we study those blind spots? The objective is to begin to map out a broad research program that examines the proliferation of algorithmic actants, and in particular the ways in which automation is influencing not only the actors, audiences, and activities associated with journalism but the very products of journalism and the ways in which we study the field. The presentation highlights four general areas of inquiry. The first, theories and methods, focuses on scrutinizing the impact of automation on the key theories used within journalism studies and exploring how different methods may be utilized to further scholarly understanding of automation’s role in journalism. The second, networks and structures, focuses on how visible and transparent actors and actants are leading and intermediating automation within journalistic spaces and evaluating how systems may be changing through alterations to (and the displacement of) social arrangements, institutionalized structures, and (e)valuations of labor. The third, processes and practices, focuses on assessing how automation maps onto the dominant logics associated with journalism and how that, in turn, impacts core journalistic activities like storytelling and fact-checking. The fourth, outputs and products, focuses on examining the current and imagined limits to the yield of automation algorithms, including the types and formats of content that presently comprise most of that output and perceptions of the types and formats that cannot be automated. Implicit to these areas of inquiry are opportunities to compare developments across nations and journalistic cultures to assess how they may be emerging in different ways. In engaging with those areas, we as scholars afford ourselves opportunities to not only anticipate the future of journalism but help shape a nascent form of it.

Les mer om Rodrigo Zamith i oversikten over Research Fellows.

“Amplifying Indigenous news: A digital intervention”, Lisa Waller, 15. mai

Dr Lisa Waller is Associate Professor (Communication) in the School of Communication and Creative Arts, Deakin University.

Dr Lisa Waller is Associate Professor (Communication) in the School of Communication and Creative Arts, Deakin University. Since entering academia in 2007 she has published widely in Media and Communication studies. Her research is concerned with how the media shapes society, from Indigenous Affairs policy, to its roles in regional and rural identity formation, the administration of justice and people’s everyday practices, including reading for leisure. She is a member of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies and Australian and New Zealand Communication Association. Lisa was a journalist on newspapers, including The Australian, and The Australian Financial Review before entering academic life. She is the co-author of Hess, K & Waller, L (2017) Local Journalism in a Digital Age (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan) and McCallum, K & Waller, L (2017) The Dynamics of News and Indigenous Policy in Australia (Bristol: Intellect)


This presentation will discuss an ongoing project that aims to road-test, document and analyse an innovative strategy for amplifying Indigenous voices in mainstream media. This action research project deploys an innovative piece of digital infrastructure, the Wakulapp, in a partnership with the Indigenous-owned and run media initiative, IndigenousX ,and Guardian Australia , the Australian digital edition of the The Guardian newspaper. For this project, an Indigenous journalist representing IndigenousX will be based in the Guardian Australia newsroom and will work closely with Wakul to research and produce stories for both outlets, identify sources and potential contributors, and provide story ideas, tips and advice to other Guardian journalists. We will deploy a mixed methods approach combining ethnographic, textual and data analysis to assess the impact of this intervention and analyse the extent to which it disrupts or transforms relationships in the Indigenous news network.

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“The new fact checkers: The history and practice of an emerging journalistic genre”, Lucas Graves, 13. april

Dr. Lucas Graves, senior research fellow ved Reuters institutt for studier av journalistikk, Universitetet i Oxford.


Political fact-checking revolves around a very specific mission: to hold public figures accountable for false or misleading claims. Reporters who practice this kind of journalism form an increasingly self-aware movement within the profession, one grounded in a shared critique of conventional, “he said, she said” objective reporting. What are the origins of this genre, and how does it challenge conventional notions of objectivity? This talk reviews the history and the practices of political fact-checking, considering their work through the lens of “institutional facts.” Such facts are much less stable than we sometimes suppose, and help to account for both fact-checking practices and the controversies they invite.


“Beyond the Here and Now of News”, Chris Peters, oktober

Chris Peters er førsteamanuensis ved Institutt for kommunikasjon og psykologi ved Universitetet i Aalborg, København. 

“This is what happens when journalism dies – Trump, Fake news, neofascism”, Robert McChesney, april

Robert McChesney er forskningsprofessor ved Institutt for kommunikasjonsforskning og Graduate School of Library and Information Science ved Universitetet i Illinois (Urbana-Champaign).


“Ten Areas of Mobile News Research”, Oscar Westlund, juni

Oscar Westlund er assisterende professor ved Institutt for journalistikk, medier og kommunikasjon, Universitetet i Göteborg.

Presentasjon over organiseringen av innholdsproduksjon og distribusjon, Andreas Hatlevik, april

Andreas Hatlevik, CCO, Nordic screens.

“The challenges and opportunities of digital journalism studies”, David Domingo, februar

David Domingo, leder for journalistikk ved Institutt for informasjons- og kommunikasjonsvitenskap, Université Libre de Bruxelle.