30 June 2005

call for entries -news & the net

Call for Contributions
News and the Net: Convergences and Divergences
A special issue of 'Scan', edited by Chris Atton & Graham Meikle

The study of news has always been central to the study of the media. But
while the rise of the Net has attracted enormous scholarly interest and
has reinvigorated the field, there has not as yet been as much research
on news and the Net as there might be. Some recent research has
emphasised online journalism as a set of professional practices
developed from existing journalistic philosophies and routines, though
often privileging the dialogical nature of the medium to generate news
agendas with media audiences (Deuze and Dimoudi, 2002). Other work
emphasises journalism as a set of deprofessionalised practices that
privilege grassroots 'native reporting' as a distinctive feature of an
'alternative journalism' (Atton, 2003). Such research highlights the
potential of Net use to enable new configurations of news production,
distribution and reception; new modes of authorship and audiencehood;
new kinds of producer and consumer. This special issue of 'Scan' invites
contributions that are able to push forward our thinking about the
modalities of Internet news production and reception. We are
particularly interested in papers that combine theory and practice to
critically explore the claims made for the various manifestations of
these practices.

Who uses online news? What do they use it for? How is credibility
judged? To what extent are relationships changing between reporters and
readers, between news outlets and consumers, in a media environment that
can be customised? How significant are participatory news and discussion
projects such as Indymedia (http://www.indymedia.org/en/index.shtml),
Wikinews (http://en.wikinews.org), OhmyNews
(http://english.ohmynews.com/) or Slashdot (http://slashdot.org/)? What
of news values and news content? What contributions are made to the
discussion of news by online art and satire projects such as Tenbyten
(http://www.tenbyten.org), News Reader
(http://turbulence.org/works/twotxt/nr-index.htm) or The Onion
(http://www.theonion.com)? And what of blogging? The blog may be just
as much the province of the professional journalist as the amateur and,
indeed, the much-vaunted 'independence' of blogs is often curtailed by a
reliance on dominant news agendas and framing mechanisms (Haas, 2005).
Which types or uses of blogging can be usefully approached under the
rubric of 'news'?

Answers on a postcard to...

Chris Atton
Napier University, Edinburgh

Graham Meikle
Macquarie University, Sydney

Submission dates and guidelines
Completed papers should be sent to the issue editors by 30 September
2005. Refereeing and revisions to be completed by 31 October 2005, for a
November launch.
Submission details and style guidelines are at
Maximum length is 6,000 words.

'Scan' (http://www.scan.net.au) is a refereed quarterly online journal
of media arts and culture, hosted by the Media Department at Macquarie
University, Sydney.

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