Trust, Truth, and Performance:
Diverse Journalisms in the 21st Century
This expert workshop aims to bring together scholars to discuss how different styles of journalism configure the ‘rules of truth’ in a manner that appears to generate trust and loyalty with audiences. While there is a fairly striking consensus amongst academics about the meshing of news and entertainment in the 21st century; problematization of the meta-narrative of objectivity; and dissolution of dichotomies like hard and soft news, there remains a diversity of opinions about the seriousness of these developments and pragmatic solutions for traditional journalistic outlets. This corresponds to disagreements over the purpose of news, entertainment, and infotainment; conceptual confusion about rationality and emotion; and the degree of threat that the shifting technological, commercial and communicative landscape poses to the profession. This workshop seeks to stimulate debate on these developments with an eye to addressing methodological and theoretical challenges presented by the appearance of a host of diverse journalisms in the 21st century. Specifically, the organizers seek papers that address questions of trust, truth, and performance in the media, building upon existing conceptualizations of the role of the media.
The past few decades have seen a sharp rise in news products that deviate sharply in tone from the sort of ‘hard’ journalistic ideal epitomized in 20th century-Anglo-American discourses of professionalism. From the rise of alternative media, to personalised blogs by journalists, talk/news radio, and a slew of ‘infotainment’ broadcasting such as panel shows, cable news magazines, and satirical news it is commonly accepted that the boundary between news and entertainment is evermore blurred. Similarly, both academics and journalists have problematized ‘objectivity’, the hallmark of 20th-century professionalism, to such an extent that claims of achieving this in reporting now appear naively optimistic or hopelessly misguided. Are different media systems, which were less beholden to the Anglo-American ideal of objectivity, finding the transformations impacting the industry less traumatic or are debates about the future and best practices of the profession also hotly contested?
Papers of an interdisciplinary nature are welcomed. Submissions that address the following aspects – and the research challenges they present – are encouraged:
•The relation between ‘trust’ and ‘truth’ in both traditional and emerging journalism outlets.
•The impact of style and performance in news production and presentation.
•The assertions of media tabloidization, informalisation, and personalisation.
•The influence of new media on trust and competing truth-claims.
•The rise of alternative journalistic genres and forms.
•The democratic impact of audience fragmentation vis-à-vis new forms of journalism.
Guidelines: Those wishing to participate may submit completed papers, early-stage drafts, works in progress, or abstracts. Please ensure all submissions contain a working abstract (to a maximum of 500 words). Participants are advised that the organizers, in conjunction with the Groningen Research Institute for the Study of Culture (ICOG), wish to combine a selection of essays from the workshop into an edited collection. Participants will have six months following the workshop to revise their papers for possible inclusion.
Deadline: Abstracts, along with contact information, should be submitted to email@example.com by July 31, 2009. When your proposal is accepted, full papers are expected by November 20, 2009.
Date: Dec. 9th – 11th, 2009.
•Wednesday evening the workshop will host a fairly informal dinner, as participants will no doubt be arriving at different times. The workshop runs Thursday and Friday, with a more formal dinner on Thursday evening.
Confirmed Keynote Speakers:
•Professor Stuart Allan, Bournemouth University
•Professor Chris Atton, Edinburgh Napier University
•Professor Brian McNair, University of Strathclyde
Workshop Coordinators: Professor Marcel Broersma and Dr. Chris Peters, Groningen Center of Journalism Studies, University of Groningen
Department of Journalism
University of Groningen
Oude Kijk in't Jatstraat 26
9712 EK Groningen
Work: +31 (0) 50 363 5269 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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