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Understanding Journalism Through a Nuanced Deconstruction of Temporal Layers in News Narratives

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This article proposes a nuanced analysis of the temporal spectrum in news narratives, beyond the three conventional temporal orientations (past‐present‐future), thus affording a more complex understanding of journalism and its varied storytelling patterns. Combining qualitative and quantitative content analysis of print and online news items in the United States and Israel, this framework is used to evaluate and compare different journalistic cultures and media technologies in relation to public time. Based on hierarchical cluster analysis, the article offers a definition for “news” which associates between 5 clusters of temporal layers and different journalistic roles: updating (present and immediate past/future), reporting (recent past), contextualization and ritualistic functions (midrange to distant past), analysis (near future), and projection (far/conjectured future).
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Keywords: Journalistic Cultures; Media and Time; News Definition; News Narratives; Print versus Online Media

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2016

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