With the power of digitalization, criticisms toward journalism now often are aired in digital spaces, such as social networks and blogs. But does criticism in digital spaces matter to journalism, and how do journalists handle this? These are questions asked by David Cheruiyot in his doctoral thesis in Media and Communication Studies. Through in-depth interviews with journalists, media critics, and media accountability agents, David’s research gives us an understanding of how journalistic practice in Kenya and South Africa is affected by new forms for mainstream media criticism. Prior to the digital era, journalists could deal with criticism in controlled spaces, such as letters to editors. Today, they may need to grapple with open hashtag campaigns built up by many different stakeholders of journalism. As David explains in our interview, this has profound effects on journalists and journalistic practice.
Whether you are aware of it or not, you have probably been subjected to gamification. Gamification refers to the practice of businesses using game-elements in non-game contexts. Raul Ferrer Conill has investigated the role of gamification in digital journalism. Today, many digital newspapers use bonuses, badges or other rewards to make users consume more articles, and to make journalists more productive. In our conversation, Raul describes why newspapers use this approach, and how it affects the commercial and professional aspects of journalism. Raul Ferrer Conill’s doctoral thesis can be downloaded from DiVA: Gamifying the news : Exploring the introduction of game elements into digital journalism