21st Century Communication A Reference Handbook

21st Century Communication: A Reference Handbook: Chapter 65: The Changing Nature of “News”

Media and Society


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Media and Society

There is an observed alteration of the definitions of what news is because of the disruption, redefinition and restructuring of the playing field for news to suit a particular unpredictable audience.

The factors that define the audience have been widened to include not only geography but also age, education, affiliations, ideologies as well as specific media use. It is the dynamics of the 21st-century media makes it so compelling.

With the ability of a top down as well as the down up news consumption, the landscape for media has completely changed.

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With the use of mobile and the advent of the internet, some consumers no longer wait for the allocated time for news or wait for newspapers delivery to consume news.

Some consumers want to participate in the choice of the news stories that are offered. There is polarity in the walls between news user and provider as citizen journalism is contributing greatly to mainstream media (Eadie, 2009).

With the consumer pushing for a wider scope of stories to be told in various ways, the traditional justifications of what makes news like proximity, timeliness conflict, unusualness and prominence can be forgone and sheltered under the human interest umbrella (Bell, 1998).

Some of the concepts exemplified are avoidance the rigid sense of timeliness since the story can be current, ongoing or hypothetical.

Besides, there is a universal accessibility to publishing removing the constraint of geographical proximity. Unusualness is now looked with diversity, inclusiveness and higher levels of sensitivity in mind. In addition, the newsworthiness of prominent individuals has changed because who is labeled as a celebrity has changed.

Therefore, there is a change in the manner in which news is consumed now which in turn affects how the provider makes it available (Eadie, 2009).


The use of social media tools to improve the flow of information

After studying the assigned reading 21st Century Communication: A Reference Handbook: Chapter 65: The Changing Nature of News considering the concepts of timeliness, proximity, unusualness, prominence, impact, conflict and human interest, provide a current example of a compelling news story.

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