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Journalists and Media Accountability

An International Study of News People in the Digital Age

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Edited By Susanne Fengler, Tobias Eberwein, Gianpietro Mazzoleni and Colin Porlezza

Media accountability is back on the political agenda. Debates about the phone-hacking scandal at Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World have shown that the need for free and responsible journalism is more pressing than ever. Opinions, however, differ on the measures that need to be taken. Do existing structures of media accountability – such as press councils, codes of ethics, and ombudspersons – suffice, or do we urgently need new instruments and initiatives in today’s converging media world?
These questions were tackled in an international survey of 1,800 journalists in twelve European and two Arab states conducted by the EU-funded research project, «Media Accountability and Transparency in Europe» (MediaAcT). The results provide a solid empirical basis for the discussions taking place. This book advances research on media accountability and transparency, and also offers innovative perspectives for newsrooms, media policy-makers, and journalism educators. Its systematic comparative design makes it an unprecedented venture in international journalism studies.
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9. Context Factors for Media Self-Regulation and Accountability: Harmen Groenhart & Huub Evers

Introduction

Extract

Chapter 9

Context Factors for Media Self-Regulation and Accountability

Bogusława Dobek-Ostrowska, Michał Głowacki & Michał Kuś

Media accountability and self-regulation cannot be understood without taking into account the social, cultural, political and economic structures that media organizations are mandated to serve, as suggested by Daniel C. Hallin and Paolo Mancini in their conceptualization of three models of media and politics. Hence, it is important to take a closer look at the context factors that have an impact on the media and thus contribute to the level of accountability and transparency in different journalism cultures. This chapter aims to identify the main frames for media accountability and transparency development in different media systems, with special emphasis on the relations with politics, the economy and society. Which factors are perceived by media professionals as having the biggest impact on journalistic professionalization, and what are the main challenges and obstacles for the development of media accountability and self-regulation in different media systems and journalism cultures?

In this context several more detailed questions will be taken into account, including:

1.What kind of relationship can be observed between political actors and journalists, how do journalists from the 14 countries involved in the study perceive the level of political (governmental and/or party) pressure, and do the empirical data confirm political parallelism in specific countries? ← 149 | 150 →

2.How do media professionals perceive the level of economic influence?

3.How do media professionals...

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