Automated journalism in UK local newsrooms: attitudes, integration, impact

Article


Thäsler-Kordonouri, S. and Barling, K. 2023. Automated journalism in UK local newsrooms: attitudes, integration, impact. Journalism Practice. https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2023.2184413
TypeArticle
TitleAutomated journalism in UK local newsrooms: attitudes, integration, impact
AuthorsThäsler-Kordonouri, S. and Barling, K.
Abstract

Automated journalism is increasingly used to produce News content in UK local newsrooms. Although scholars have been discussing the disruptive potential of automation for journalism, little is known about how local media practitioners deploy and perceive automated journalism. This study aims to help fill this research gap using semi-structured interviews with media practitioners from four local news companies. Each use automated content provided by the news automation service RADAR moderated by human journalists at RADAR itself. Typically RADAR identifies important national datasets on release and then uses a human journalist to create an algorithm to analyse the data for local variations. This material is then made available through a subscription service to the end user, the local newsroom. It is for the local newsroom teams to decide what is relevant to their audiences.
Our findings show that local journalists evaluate automated journalism based on several occupational influences, that they integrate RADAR’s automated journalism into their own editorial outputs in various ways, and that the use of this automated journalism is having an impacts on shaping local nes agendas and newsroom performance. Our evidence also shows that whilst most media practitioners perceive a limited relevance of automated journalism for local news reporting and continue to stress the importance of human agency in the journalism workflow, what they report is conversely a shift in their practices which actually suggests that automated journalism has greater impact than they are currently willing to acknowledge.

KeywordsAutomated journalism; local journalism; semi-structured interview study; data driven journalism; United Kingdom; localness; publishing pressure
Sustainable Development Goals9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure
Middlesex University ThemeCreativity, Culture & Enterprise
LanguageEnglish
PublisherTaylor & Francis (Routledge)
JournalJournalism Practice
ISSN1751-2786
Electronic1751-2794
Publication dates
Online02 Mar 2023
Publication process dates
Deposited20 Feb 2023
Submitted06 Jun 2022
Accepted19 Feb 2023
Output statusIn press
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Copyright Statement

© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2023.2184413
Web of Science identifierWOS:000942667000001
Permalink -

https://repository.mdx.ac.uk/item/8q48v

Download files

  • 40
    total views
  • 14
    total downloads
  • 4
    views this month
  • 1
    downloads this month

Export as

Related outputs

Connecting theory and practice through experiential learning: a co-curricular case study from the ‘Journalism Conversation Series’
Barling, K. and Knowles, S. 2019. Connecting theory and practice through experiential learning: a co-curricular case study from the ‘Journalism Conversation Series’. 5th World Journalism Education Congress. Paris
Making local public interest journalism viable again: an opportunity for human computer interaction?
Barling, K. and Thäsler-Kordonouri, S. 2021. Making local public interest journalism viable again: an opportunity for human computer interaction? Future of Journalism Conference: Overcoming Obstacles in Journalism. Cardiff/Online 23 - 24 Sep 2021
Can Untold Stories be told with the demise of local journalism
Barling, K. 2019. Can Untold Stories be told with the demise of local journalism. AJE UK - Untold Stories - Association Journalism Education, 1st international conference held prior to 5th World Journalism Education Congress/. Paris, France 08 - 11 Jul 2019
Putting the black in Britain back on the BBC
Barling, K. 2022. Putting the black in Britain back on the BBC. Critical Studies in Television. 17 (2), pp. 154-169. https://doi.org/10.1177/17496020211067745
News: fact or fiction?
Barling, K. 2022. News: fact or fiction? in: Harrison, J. and McKernan, L. (ed.) Breaking The News London British Library Publishing. pp. 179-188
Seeing is believing
Barling, K. 2022. Seeing is believing. in: Harrison, J. and McKernan, L. (ed.) Breaking The News London British Library Publishing. pp. 150-163
In the public interest
Barling, K. 2022. In the public interest. in: Harrison, J. and McKernan, L. (ed.) Breaking The News London British Library Publishing. pp. 125-136
Racial economic inequality: the visible tip of an inequality iceberg
Barling, K. 2022. Racial economic inequality: the visible tip of an inequality iceberg. in: Schifferes, S. and Knowles, S. (ed.) The Media and Inequality London Routledge.
Putting the black into Britain
Barling, K. 2021. Putting the black into Britain. Representology: The Journal of Media and Diversity. 2, pp. 18-23.
Hidden Histories: Soldiers from the Empire
Barling, K. and Garfield, J. 2014. Hidden Histories: Soldiers from the Empire.
We've been here before
Barling, K. 2017. We've been here before. British Journalism Review. 28 (3), pp. 30-35. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956474817730766
Is local journalism failing? Local voices in the aftermath of the Grenfell and Lakanal fire disasters
Barling, K. 2020. Is local journalism failing? Local voices in the aftermath of the Grenfell and Lakanal fire disasters. in: Thorsen, E. and Matthews, J. (ed.) Media, Journalism and Disaster Communities Cham, Switzerland Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 165-177
A topic model analysis approach to understand Twitter public discourse: Grenfell Tower Fire case study
Barling, K. and Chamil, R. 2018. A topic model analysis approach to understand Twitter public discourse: Grenfell Tower Fire case study. Internet, Policy & Politics Conference: IPP2018 Long Live Democracy!. St Anne's College, Oxford University 20 - 21 Sep 2018
Script Consultant [for End of the Pier By Danny Robins]
Barling, K. 2018. Script Consultant [for End of the Pier By Danny Robins]. London Playdead Press.
Foreword to Darkness Over Germany Audiobook
Barling, K. 2018. Foreword to Darkness Over Germany Audiobook. in: Darkness over Germany: A Warning from History by E. Amy Buller Audible Studios.
Is Our Curriculum too White? Don't BAME me....
Barling, K. 2018. Is Our Curriculum too White? Don't BAME me.... HEA Annual Conference 2018,Teaching in the spotlight: Learning from global communities. University of Aston, Birmingham 03 - 05 Jul 2018
Experiential learning: is critical reflection a bridge from practice to theory?
Barling, K. 2018. Experiential learning: is critical reflection a bridge from practice to theory? AJE Annual Conference 2018. Canterbury Christ Church University 29 Jun 2018
Grenfell Tower - social media & public narrative
Barling, K. 2017. Grenfell Tower - social media & public narrative. Fourth International Conference on Emerging Research Paradigms in Business and Social Sciences (ERPBSS-2018). Dubai 16 - 18 Jan 2018
Foreword to Darkness Over Germany
Barling, K. 2018. Foreword to Darkness Over Germany. in: Darkness Over Germany: A Warning from History by E. Amy Buller Northampton Massachusetts USA Interlink Books. pp. vii-xxxvi
Investigation of Lakanal House Fire
Barling, K. 2017. Investigation of Lakanal House Fire.
Urge to Paint
Barling, K. 2017. Urge to Paint. Goldsmiths University
Foreword to Darkness Over Germany
Barling, K. 2017. Foreword to Darkness Over Germany. in: Darkness over Germany: A Warning from History by E. Amy Buller London Arcadia Books. pp. vii-xxxiv
Hidden heroes: soldiers from the empire
Barling, K. 2015. Hidden heroes: soldiers from the empire. Bruce Castle Museum, London 01 Oct 2015 - 30 Jun 2016
Finsternis in Deutschland: Was die Deutschen dachten. Interviews einer Engländerin 1934-1938
Buller, A. and Barling, K. Barling, K. (ed.) 2016. Finsternis in Deutschland: Was die Deutschen dachten. Interviews einer Engländerin 1934-1938. Munchen Elisabeth Sandmann Verlag GmbH.
Abu Hamza: guilty: the fight against radical Islam
Barling, K. and Hassaïne, R. 2014. Abu Hamza: guilty: the fight against radical Islam. London Redshank Books.
The 'R' word: racism
Barling, K. 2015. The 'R' word: racism. London, UK Biteback Publishing.
Nigeria: the edge of the abyss
Barling, K. and Akinrinade, O. 1998. Nigeria: the edge of the abyss. The World Today. 54 (7), pp. 200-202.
Economic development in Africa: international efforts, issues and prospects
Akinrinade, O. and Barling, K. 2013. Economic development in Africa: international efforts, issues and prospects. UK Bloomsbury Academic.