Journalists' perceptions of online information-gathering problems

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

47 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper reports findings of a longitudinal study of the leading problems identified by journalists using the World Wide Web for newsgathering. Respondents to 1997 and 1998 national surveys listed their perceptions of flaws in the Web as a newsgathering source. Data from additional national surveys conducted in 1994, 1995, and 1996 are also reported. The analysis found growing use of the Web and commercial online services for newsgathering during each of the five years, but use increased the most in 1996 and 1997. Among the leading problems journalists identified in using online sources were verification of facts, sites containing unreliable information, badly sourced information, and lack of source credibility. Web-related problems, based on the technology itself, were not perceived to be as severe. The study found a growing need for ongoing newsroom training and development of online research skills among reporters and their editors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)500-514
Number of pages15
JournalJournalism and Mass Communication Quaterly
Volume77
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

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