Volume 1, Number 1, 2001
By Alan Knight
Australia is described to the world by foreign correspondents. But where do they get their information from?
To investigate correspondents' stated use of sources, a computerised questionnaire created by Central Queensland University's Centre for Social Science Research, was sent by email to members of the Foreign Correspondents Association of Australia. Their answers were lodged on a university based website, allowing results to be incorporated on a spreadsheet and analysed. Respondents were asked to rate sources as very useful, useful and not useful. Responses were scored and tabulated. The study found that the correspondents preferred secondary sources, web sites quality newspaperrs, and radio news to primary sources such as politicians, NGOs and corporations.
by Kieran Lewis
This paper provides practical advice for Australian government public relations practitioners in the area of Internet-based PR. It discusses what can realistically be expected from using the Internet to enhance their public relations activities. In Australia, as in most countries, the Internet is a powerful tool for government public relations, but it is not the "be-all-and-end-all" for PR and neither will it replace many public relations functions. Public relations personnel do not need to become "new media" technicians, but they do need to appreciate that audiences use the Internet differently to the way they use other public relations media. Inter alia, this changes the way documents are written and presented on the Internet compared with more conventional "hard-copy" material. Public relations practitioners must also appreciate that the limiting factor of the Internet in Australia is connection speed (and this shows little sign of improving in the short term), and be aware of the emerging trends of Internet-based PR.
The line between comment and opinion is increasingly becoming blurred in newspapers. Some critics are concerned that the public cannot distinguish between comment and reporting. Comment may even be pushing out space traditionally reserved for news, for example, in reporting on Parliament. The correction of errors of fact in opinion pieces needs addressing. Measures are needed to improve the standard of comment and to disentangle it from factual reporting. More diversity of opinion and the use of outside authorities and experts to provide it is one suggestion. A greater emphasis on fact-checking would help.
Improved public literacy about the media and education via the school system to teach people how to read and interpret the media are other suggestions.Give us a fair go! Legal obstacles to reporting sport on the Internet
by Rhonda Breit
As the Internet becomes a mainstream conduit for business and communication, it can no longer be referred to as a " lawless frontier" (De Zwart 1999, 112). The laws that regulate this environment, however, are not always obvious, particularly to reporters who have to collect stories for online newspapers, which are facing competition from their traditional sources of information. This article uses a case study of on-line sport to examine the legal pitfalls facing journalists reporting on-line.Media Ownership and the Productivity Commission: Market Theory and Regulatory Practice in the Global Age
by Denis Cryle
This article identifies and analyses significant developments in Australian media ownership, focussing on the second term of the Howard government (1997-2000) and on the comprehensive inquiry which the Productivity Commission conducted into broadcasting during 1999-2000. This article will discuss the case for and against the deregulation of existing foreign investment and cross ownership rules drawing on submissions to the Inquiry before reviewing the Commission's findings and assessing its attempts to promote a new regulatory agenda.Understanding the Impact of the Internet: On New Media Professionalism, Mindsets and Buzzwords
by Mark Deuze
This paper attempts to describe and analyze the impact the Internet has on journalists, specifically in terms of the development of the characteristics of 'ejournalism'. New media technologies inparticularly the 1990s have further professionalized the discipline of computer-assisted reporting (CAR) and created a specific kind ofjournalism: online journalism. Using data from a 1999 survey of online journalists in The Netherlands the self-perceptions and the dilemmas ofthis new group of media professionals are analyzed. Beyond this survey -which shows a well-developed mindset among reporters but also a problematic labor organization in the Web based newsroom - some of the 'buzzwords' in ejournalism are discussed (cf. annotative reporting, hyperadaptive news sites, open-source journalism, multimedia windowing of content) interms of how the contemporary literature and the experiences of the survey might help us to understand the road ahead for 'ejournalism'.Online Investigative Journalism
by Alan Knight
The Internet offers investigative journalists new tools for reporting; qualified access to global communities of interests which may provide alternate sources to those in authority. In doing so, it presents opportunities and problems for investigative reporters. Meanwhile, it impacts on production processes with radio, television and text journalism practices converging through digitisation on the internet; towards a new hybrid profession, ejournalism.
Dr Yoshiko Nakano, Hong Kong University
Elliott S. Parker, Central Michigan University, USA
Dr Philip Robertson, Central Queensland University
Jim Tully, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
Dr Stephen Stockwell, Griffith University
Philip Cass, Zayed University, United Arab Emirates
Dr Steve Quinn, Zayed University, United Arab Emirates
Ejournalist is published by ejournalism.au.com, Faculty of Informatics and Communication, Central Queensland University