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April 23, 2018 / C H Thompson

The rise of churnalism

  • The GMG generally support neo-Marxist (dominant ideology/hegemony) approaches to the media
  • For neo-Marxists primary definers (primary definers are ‘experts’ on an issue such as the police, leading politicians, senior religious figures etc – media are secondary definers ) influence the content of the news because journalists ‘cosy’ up to them for their information
  • GMG point out journalists are mainly white, well-educated middle-class males, their views tend to be less favourable to those groups with more radical views (this links back to news-values).
  • This highlights how for the GMG media output reflects the views of dominant powerful groups – primary definers
  • Churnalism is a form of journalism which produces news articles from press releases created by primary definers eg public relations (PR) firms; political spin doctors; news agencies etc. without the journalist checking the facts – meaning there’s very little investigative journalism
  • Davis found 80% of stories in the main newspapers, such as The Times, Daily Mail, Guardian etc were created this way. It’s worth noting most television news comes from the same process hence most news running orders are the same
  • The reason for the above is down to owners wanting to reduce costs

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