The final paper in this ECREA 2016 session is by Christian Nuernbergk, whose focus is on the interaction of political and journalistic actors via social media. Both now have to deal with emerging personal publics in social media, in addition to their conventional mass media publics; they now need to have in mind a range of such publics in their everyday professional practice.
The next paper at ECREA 2016 is presented by Christoph Neuberger, whose focus is on the dynamic relationship between journalism and its audiences. He points out that the complexity of communication has increased with the range of options for communication that have now emerged in online contexts.
The morning session on this final day of ECREA 2016 starts with a panel that emerges from the "Journalism beyond the Crisis" ARC Discovery research project that Brian McNair, Folker Hanusch and I lead. As Aljosha Schapals explains in his introduction to the panel, this explores the changing content forms, journalistic practices, and user reception of factual content, as well as the implications of these developments for overall democratic processes.
The final speaker at ECREA 2016 for today is Bolette Blaagaard, who shifts our focus back to citizen journalism. This has largely been understood as a process of citizens distributing news and journalism, often in opposition to conventional professional journalism; but here the focus is more on citizens making (or citizen-making) journalism, with an emphasis on the creative and the embodied political.
The third speaker in this ECREA 2016 session is Jakob Macek, who turns out focus to the apparently increasing polarisation of political discourses in many developed nations – he cites Brexit, the U.S. elections, elections in Austria, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and other countries as examples. This generates huge challenges for the social sciences: for opinion polling, most obviously, as well as for other forms of studying public debate and public opinions.
The second speaker in this ECREA 2016 speakers are Dennis Friess and Pablo Porten Cheé, who shift our attention to e-participation tools and platforms. They begin by noting that there is a democratic crisis which manifests itself in growing scepticism about representative policy-making. One response to this is a call for more opportunities for citizen participation, especially also through online platforms; but does such e-participation lead to more positive attitudes towards democratic processes?
The final session at ECREA 2016 today begins with Lena Knaudt, whose focus is on the democratic potential of slow journalism. Examples for this kind of journalism are especially platforms like De Correspondent and Krautreporter.
The final presenter in this ECREA 2016 session is Jakob Bjur, whose interest is in the media measurement of media work. There is now plenty of work on audience measurement systems, and also a growing wave of criticism of these systems: such systems are viewed as capturing audience labour, but with very one-dimensional metrics that generate measurement currencies that are very far removed from actual audiencing practices.
The next speaker at ECREA 2016 is Miriam Steiner, whose focus is on news overload amongst the well-educated elite. This is an increasingly important issue as it appears to be in the process of becoming a serious condition in contemporary society. Well-informed citizens are a fundamental precondition for a functioning democracy, but there is now a high-choice news environment that provides an immense volume of news which is at the same time also easier to ignore. This generates a widening news consumption gap, especially between populations of various levels of education, and may result in a growing polarisation between news seekers and news avoiders.