Research Review

These short features highlight academic research that could be relevant and useful to the news industry. We also hope that this series will spark ideas among academics with an interest in researching the news.

How surveillance concerns affect national security journalists

Today’s journalists owe so much to modern technologies like social media, mobile apps, digital recording devices and cloud storage space — all of which can make reporting easier. However, many of those same technologies are now associated with potential security risks. Mass-surveillance stories like the whistle-blowing saga of Edward Snowden and the National Security Agency […]

How journalists are using DocumentCloud to support facts in their stories

Anti-press sentiment, fueled in no small part by President Trump, has left news organizations looking for new ways to bolster lagging trust. One way to increase trust is to improve the transparency of newsrooms by making journalists’ information-gathering processes more visible to the public. Some newsrooms are accomplishing this by using DocumentCloud, an online platform […]

What do newspapers lose when they use non-professional photography?

Photojournalists have not fared well in recent years. In some newsrooms, entire photojournalism staffs have been eliminated. Publishers concerned about the bottom line may reason that photojournalism is a dying art. After all, smartphones are abundant and can be used to create high-quality images. But are photos from non-professionals as compelling as those produced by […]

Why we click on news stories

For news organizations, clicks are tracked closely. They generate advertising revenue and help newsrooms to better understand audience interests. But what motivates news users to click? The reasons are diverse and perhaps unexpected, according to a study forthcoming in the academic journal Journalism by Ph.D. candidate Tim Groot Kormelink and journalism studies professor Irene Costera […]

When journalists get their info from social media, audiences find the reports less credible

Press conferences, interviews, telephone calls — these are the traditional ways in which journalists source their stories. Today, however, many more options are available. From Facebook to Twitter to Google, journalists have many new ways to track down information to inform their reporting. But what do audiences think about these techniques? Do readers think social […]

Outsourced copy-editing doesn’t necessarily mean increased corrections

Newspapers have explored a variety of options to keep costs down, but one possibility —  outsourced copy-editing — comes with a substantial fear that the quality of a newspaper will decline because articles will be replete with errors. Copy editors housed in the newsroom are familiar with local facts and figures, the logic goes, and […]

How to assess the vibrancy of a community’s news ecosystem

Is there enough news produced by and for your community? How might you know? That question is increasing in both importance and difficulty, as traditional news sources falter or transform and new sources of information reshape the public’s behavior. During this time of large and uneven change in how much and what type of news […]

How hyperlocal news outlets are taking shape across the U.S.

A conventional impression of a hyperlocal news source is one person working tirelessly to solicit community involvement and fill a website. Although there is some truth to the reputation, recent research by Arizona State University assistant professor Monica Chadha shows that hyperlocals come in many different forms, some with more than 20 employees and some with […]

Interaction on Twitter enhances journalists’ credibility

Journalists can use Twitter in many different ways. They can reveal personal details or maintain a purely professional profile. They can interact with their followers or focus on tweeting news and information. Those choices journalists make about how to behave on Twitter can influence what people think about them, according to new research from assistant […]

How automated Twitter bots try to spread the news

When I hear about bots, or software designed to act like humans on social networks, the first thing that pops into my mind is automated accounts spewing spam across the Internet. Not all bots are bad, though. In fact, some Twitter bots are circulating valuable news and information, according to a forthcoming research article by […]