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Journalism in an Era of Big Data : Cases, Concepts, and Critiques (Hardcover)

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Big data is marked by staggering growth in the collection and analysis of digital trace information regarding human and natural activity, bound up in and enabled by the rise of persistent connectivity, networked communication, smart machines, and the internet of things. In addition to their impact on technology and society, these developments have particular significance for the media industry and for journalism as a practice and a profession. These data-centric phenomena are, by some accounts, poised to greatly influence, if not transform, some of the most fundamental aspects of news and its production and distribution by humans and machines.

What such changes actually mean for news, democracy, and public life, however, is far from certain. As such, there is a need for scholarly scrutiny and critique of this trend, and this volume thus explores a range of phenomena—from the use of algorithms in the newsroom, to the emergence of automated news stories—at the intersection between journalism and the social, computer, and information sciences. What are the implications of such developments for journalism’s professional norms, routines, and ethics? For its organizations, institutions, and economics? For its authority and expertise? And for the epistemology that underwrites journalism’s role as knowledge-producer and sense-maker in society? Altogether, this book offers a first step in understanding what big data means for journalism. This book was originally published as a special issue ofDigital Journalism.


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