Diffusion of online information technologies in newspaper newsrooms

Bruce Garrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


This study examined the spread of online information technologies within US daily newspaper newsrooms over a six-year period beginning in 1994. Since the general public and news media began to embrace the internet and world wide web in early 1994, a process of adoption of this interactive innovation by newspapers occurred. The longitudinal survey data revealed that use of interactive information-gathering technologies in newsrooms has reached a critical mass for (1) general computer use, (2) online research in newsrooms, (3) non-specialist content searching, and (4) daily frequency of online use. Data revealed the web and internet to be the most-used new resources for finding online information, replacing and supplementing established commercial services. Data also suggest a redefinition of roles in the newsroom resulting from adoption of the web and other online technologies, breaking from traditional news-researcher, reporter, and editor roles. Today's newsrooms often merge the researcher and reporter/editor roles, freeing researchers for other tasks. New media technologies such as online news research have achieved greater utility as more journalists have adopted them. Use levels will become increasingly sophisticated as additional users - journalists themselves and their sources - adopt.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-239
Number of pages19
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001


  • Diffusion theory
  • Interactive technologies
  • Internet use
  • News reporting
  • Newspapers
  • Newsrooms
  • Web use
  • World wide web

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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