Media companies, news agencies, and editors are keen to say that they engage in “diverse journalism”. Diversity seems to be taken for granted as one of the criteria and ideals of high-quality news reporting.
The key questions of The News Source Diversity Meter project are: What type of measurement data do newsrooms need in order to enhance the source diversity in journalism, and how can natural language processing (NLP) technology help to improve such measurements? How can measuring source diversity lead to better, more diverse journalism? The News Source Diversity Meter is being developed in collaboration with newsrooms in a practical environment. It is a unique measurement and analysis service that answers news diversity related questions that media companies have identified themselves and guides journalists towards new questions and broader considerations of the quality of journalism.
When public discourse elsewhere in the media becomes polarised and begins to resemble an echo chamber, journalism can offer a powerful counterweight in the form of diverse but structured public debate.
According to the vision that guides the News Source Diversity Meter, investing in the source diversity of journalism can enhance trust among various audiences in the accountability of journalism and the idea that journalism remains a significant platform for common public discussion. As many people as possible should feel that journalistic content is fair and also reflects the way they experience the world. In essence, the objective of the News Source Diversity Meter is to support public debate that promotes democracy and equality.
METHODS AND DATA
The project’s research method is design research. Design research is widely used in IT research, in which it has been found to support a multidisciplinary work process.
In this project, the design research focuses in the development of the News Source Diversity Meter, but also studies the meter-related user experiences that have been collected in several workshops in many different newsrooms. The workshops have offered an opportunity to trial the meter in practice and gain valuable feedback on how it works and how it should be developed further. The research data is the development and usage process of the meter as a whole, which is documented for further analysis.