Publication details

Technological change as curse or redemption for journalistic labour: A case study of TV news reporters and camera reporters

Authors

WASCHKOVÁ CÍSAŘOVÁ Lenka METYKOVÁ Monika

Year of publication 2020
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
Citation
Description It is a truism that technological developments significantly impact on journalists’ labour. But exactly how and under what circumstances? In this paper we aim to address the gap on (some aspects of) technological change and the journalistic profession in the Czech Republic. We focus on television journalists’ – news reporters’ and camera reporters’ – professional practices in the news production process, particularly the interaction between technological change, workflow and autonomy (deskilling, reskilling or multiskilling, cf. Bro et al., 2016). Technology can, for example, broaden the group of potential journalists (Zelizer, 2004); consolidate the work of television reporters to multi-skilled video journalists (Saltzis and Dickinson, 2018; Wallace, 2013) or operational broadcast journalists (García Avilés et al., 2004). Technological advances and their adoption in newsrooms can result in technical know-how becoming a mere craft rather than professional journalism (Örnebring, 2010) and can lead to increased tensions among various news workers (Sehl et al., 2018). Our case study is based in a Czech television studio where we conducted 17 interviews with camera reporters, news reporters, editors, producers and managers in late 2018 and early 2019. Our findings suggest that the work practices and autonomy of the different news workers are influenced more by existing professional hierarchies than by technological change.
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