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The Temporal Nature of Mobile Push Notification Alerts: A Study of European News Outlets' Dissemination Patterns


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Push notifications provide news outlets with direct access to audiences amid concerns around information overload, disinformation, and heightened competition for reader attention. Such news distribution is relevant because it (a) bypasses social media and news aggregators, reaching readers directly; (b) alters the agency and control of temporal news personalisation; and (c) reinforces mobile as the locus of contact between news organisations and audiences. However, push notifications are a relatively under-researched topic. We explore news organisations’ use of alerts, considering whether they attempt to integrate with existing mobile-user behaviour patterns or seek to be a disruptive element, garnering attention when audiences are not typically using devices. Through quantitative content analysis, this study examines the temporality of push notifications (n ¼ 7092) from nine Northwestern European countries, comprising 34 news outlets. These data allow for comparisons at two levels: publisher type and national context. The study shows how the temporal patterns of push notifications’ dissemination align with existing news consumption behaviours; concepts of content-snacking and audiences’ rhythms and rituals are a useful lens through which these immediate, concise texts can be considered. Our findings show that news organisations use the mobile channel for attracting and maintaining users’ attention, with varying interpretations of temporal customizability.
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The Temporal Nature of Mobile Push Notification
Alerts: A Study of European News Outlets’
Dissemination Patterns
Dawn Wheatley & Raul Ferrer-Conill
To cite this article: Dawn Wheatley & Raul Ferrer-Conill (2020): The Temporal Nature of Mobile
Push Notification Alerts: A Study of European News Outlets’ Dissemination Patterns, Digital
Journalism, DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2020.1799425
To link to this article:
© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa
UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis
Published online: 07 Aug 2020.
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The Temporal Nature of Mobile Push Notification Alerts:
A Study of European News Outlets
Dissemination Patterns
Dawn Wheatley
and Raul Ferrer-Conill
School of Communications, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland;
Department of Geography,
Media & Communication, Karlstad University, Karlstad, Sweden;
Department of Media and Social
Sciences, University of Stavanger, Stavanger, Norway
Push notifications provide news outlets with direct access to audi-
ences amid concerns around information overload, disinformation,
and heightened competition for reader attention. Such news distri-
bution is relevant because it (a) bypasses social media and news
aggregators, reaching readers directly; (b) alters the agency and
control of temporal news personalisation; and (c) reinforces mobile
as the locus of contact between news organisations and audiences.
However, push notifications are a relatively under-researched topic.
We explore news organisationsuse of alerts, considering whether
they attempt to integrate with existing mobile-user behaviour pat-
terns or seek to be a disruptive element, garnering attention when
audiences are not typically using devices. Through quantitative
content analysis, this study examines the temporality of push noti-
fications (n¼7092) from nine Northwestern European countries,
comprising 34 news outlets. These data allow for comparisons at
two levels: publisher type and national context. The study shows
how the temporal patterns of push notificationsdissemination
align with existing news consumption behaviours; concepts of con-
tent-snacking and audiencesrhythms and rituals are a useful lens
through which these immediate, concise texts can be considered.
Our findings show that news organisations use the mobile channel
for attracting and maintaining usersattention, with varying inter-
pretations of temporal customisability.
Mobile news; news alerts;
news consumption; push
notifications temporality
Mobile Push Notifications as Personalised News Dissemination
As news consumption on mobile phones continues to grow (Newman et al. 2019), the
convergence between broadcasting to all mobile users and personalising their content is
still in its formative years. From the early approaches of push notification alerts via SMS
and MMS (see Westlund 2013) to the deployment of news apps (see Schmitz Weiss
2013), news outlets continuously try to capture audience engagement with technological
CONTACT Raul Ferrer-Conill
ß2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives
License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in
any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
systems that produce short-term, fragmented information, connecting with what Elliot
and Urry (2010) call on-the-go lifestyles. In production terms, mobile technology has
spurred the appearance of locative journalism (Nyre et al. 2012) and MoJomobile jour-
nalists (Westlund and Quinn 2018). Mobile has also become an essential factor within the
cross-media news repertoires which individuals draw on as resources(Schrøder 2015,
71) for everyday news consumption, often complementing news consumption, rather
than substituting it. For example, Xu et al. found that the adoption of a mobile news
app significantly increases the probability of visiting the providers corresponding mobile
website(2014, 109). This is also true for push notification alerts which is selected and
directly pushedinto usersmobile phones (Fidalgo 2009).
The importance of push notifications is both journalistic and societal, as it restruc-
tures existing temporal and spatial conceptualisations within communication (Castells
et al. 2007). To news organisations, the mobile device ubiquity affords media exposure
beyond traditional conceptions of space and time (Peters 2012) providing direct access
to news audiences, bypassing social media and news aggregators (Westlund 2015)
whenever they want. Moreover, in a news media landscape where disinformation cam-
paigns are difficult to control due to the prevalence of social media, news organisa-
tions try to regain relevance by bringing audiences back to proprietary platforms
(Westlund and Ekstr
om 2018). This means that news outlets can wait for news seekers
to pullinformation, but outlets also have the ability to pushcontent and directly
engage with audiences. For the audience, this provides a way to receive news directly
from trusted sources, with higher flexibility in where and when they access the news
(Duffy et al. 2020). It also means introducing a layer of personalisation to news serv-
ices, even potentially providing options for the time of day which audiences choose to
receive alerts. We borrow Thurman and Schifferesdefinition of personalisation as a
form of user-to-system interactivity that uses a set of technological features to adapt
the content, delivery, and arrangement of a communication to individual usersexpli-
citly registered and/or implicitly determined preferences(2012, 776).
Considering the adoption of mobile use for news consumption varies according to
national and cultural context (Westlund 2010), this study explores how news organisations
in different countries integrate and deploy mobile notifications. Here, we adopt the com-
mon terminology such as mobile alerts or push notifications, but acknowledge alternative
naming, such as push alerts or push messages, as part of an overarching trend of deliver-
ing news in short form, directly to mobile devices (Ling et al. 2020). Our purpose is to focus
on the temporal aspect of push notifications and whether there are existing mobile-user
behaviour patterns, and comparing how different news outlets use push notifications. We
also investigate the temporal-based personalisation features which push notification serv-
ices and apps offer consumers. We do so by analysing the push notifications (n¼7092)
and distribution patterns of 34 news organisations in nine northwestern European coun-
tries. This study contributes to a surprisingly sparse body of knowledge on mobile notifica-
tions with a first glimpse of an increasingly strategic distribution channel.
We start by providing a literature review on the temporal aspects of news, the audi-
ence-orientation process of journalism, and the personalisation and customisation of
mobile notifications. Then we outline the method and study rationale before
presenting the results. This article concludes with a discussion on the meaning of
push notifications while outlining a future research agenda.
The Flow of News Consumption? Time, Personalisation, and Audience
Research focussing on mobile notifications is scarce and has only partly studied push
notifications as one of mobile journalisms many components (see L
ıa et al.
2019). Fidalgo (2009) mapped the Portuguese news media alerts service and found
that personalisation of notification services resided within the paid options at a time
when SMS was the predominant option. Fidalgo contends that due to the personal-
ised mass communication nature of mobile phones, news organisations should be
aware that the amount, the kind and the frequency of the news individuals want to
receive through push technology is totally dependent upon them(2009, 120). Over
the past decade, push notifications have been described as the fastest-growing gate-
way to news(Newman et al. 2018), leading to increased usage from news outlets as
alerts grow in popularity, especially among younger audiences (Newman et al. 2019).
One difference between regular news and push notifications resides in the time
and place of consumption: push notifications extend the exposure to cherry-picked
news in spaces and moments which usually would not include news consumption.
Newman proposes that mobile alerts are seen by publishers as a channel to attract
attention and rebuild direct relationships with users(2016, 7), but suggests news
apps are involved in a battle for the lockscreen,ultimately fighting for audience
attention. We believe push notifications are indicative of news organisationsattempt
to influence how and when audiences consume news, a task that has historically pro-
ven challenging. According to the 2018 Digital News Report (Newman et al. 2018),
16% of those surveyed had received a notification in the past week, ranging from 35%
in Mexico to 5% in Czech Republic. However, 37% of users said nothing would encour-
age them to get notifications, while 18% said they would if they could assert some
control over the number of alerts received. Brown (2017) provides an overview on
how US news outlets use mobile alerts, finding those organisations sent an average of
3.2 notifications per day, containing details and context of events, predominantly via
plain text (only one-third of outlets used rich media). Additionally, Brown found that
the reason behind push notifications is the intention to build and maintain brand loy-
alty, to drive audiences to their proprietary platforms (apps or websites), and to
enhance segmenting and personalisation. In a follow-up study, Brown (2018) noticed
some strategic changes, suggesting there is no settled approach to push notification
use. Although alerts are traditionally associated with breaking-news events and are
considered an affordance of the constant-news-update environments of networked
news outlets (Rom and Reich 2020; Tenenboim-Weinblatt and Neiger 2018), there may
be a shift away from breaking news towards more exclusive brand content (Brown
2018). Finally, Stroud, Peacock, and Curry (2020) found that while push notifications
provide minimal increased learning about the news, they do increase news use among
users who opt to receive push notifications more than those who have notifica-
tions disabled.
This study is interested in the three main features that these previous studies high-
lighted and which are vital to how news organisations deploy push notifications: the
temporal aspect of news, the personalisation of news, and journalisms audience-
Synchronising the Times of News Production and Consumption
Journalism can be considered a cultural practice dependent on a temporal and spatial
context in which the relevance of news grows according to the temporal and geo-
graphical proximity of the events covered (Carlson 2016). Echoing Peters, thinking
spatio-temporallyhelps us distinguish the unique from the routine, the extraordinary
from the ordinary, the significant from the mundane(2015, 10). However, the tem-
poral dimensions of journalism go beyond story content (Tenenboim-Weinblatt 2014)
as production and consumption times are also crucial when estimating the importance
of journalism (Bødker and Br
ugger 2018) and how audiences engage with the news
(Steensen, Ferrer-Conill, and Peters 2020). Ubiquitous mobile connectivity and multi-
platform publishing outlets have led to hyper-immediacy where journalists, in the pur-
suit of breaking stories and providing constant updates, can produce confusing and
misleading reporting (Karlsson 2011). And while the production of news may be con-
tinuous, its distribution often adheres to distinct time patterns (Wheatley and
OSullivan 2017), as legacy printing/broadcasting follow sequential and programmatic
schedules. News is made available to the public in a routine fashion, and even 24-h
news channels follow scheduled cycles of headline summaries. However, as Lewis,
Cushion, and Thomas (2005) found, while allowing audiences to tune it at any time,
24-h news channels fail to provide context or analysis to breaking news and are less
informative than regular news broadcasts on legacy media. Similarly, Nelson (2020)
found that while there are patterns of news consumption that change, such as time
and space, other aspects, such as the sources audiences turn to for news, remain simi-
lar between mobile and desktop platforms.
Providing the public with constant news demonstrates the importance of time in
news consumption. For networked audiences, the timeliness and rhythms of news
consumption transcend the traditional temporalities of legacy news distribution, such
as broadcasts and press cycles (Ananny 2016). News consumption is increasingly tem-
porally fragmented and/or unhinged from specific social situations(Bødker 2017, 62).
News organisations seek to capitalise on the fragmented form of news consumption
and use push notifications to increase the time spenton news during shorter, more
frequent, moments. For example, Newman et al. (2019, 56) identified four key
moments of news consumption for young people: (a) dedicated moments where they
give time to news (usually evenings and weekends), (b) a moment of update (usually
the mornings), (c) time fillers (commuting or queuing), and (d) intercepted moments
where they receive news notifications or messages from friends with news. Thurman
(2018) found that audience-time spent engaging with the news online is already
higher via mobile than PC in the UK and has ample room to grow since they are
important channels as time fillers, updates, and direct targets of news organisations.
However, while Groot Kormelink and Costera Meijer (2020) find that time spent is not
necessarily a good measure for the quality of news experience, studies in news con-
sumption suggest that increased personalisation captures usersattention by increas-
ing their time spent engaging with news (Thurman 2018; Thurman and Schifferes
2012; Van Damme et al. 2015). Thus, we consider whether outlets are perhaps trying
to extend the time audiences spent consuming content to better align with the all-
day news publishing and production cycles which are an inherent part of contempor-
ary news organisationspractices.
Personalised News and the Agency over News Consumption
Networked mobile platforms and social media have caused disruptive transformations
on the underlying spatial and temporal formations of news(Sheller 2015, 18) for trad-
itional news organisations. This transition resulted in what Hermida calls ambient jour-
nalismas a broad, asynchronous, lightweight and always-on communication systems
[that] are creating new kinds of interactions around the news, and are enabling citi-
zens to maintain a mental model of news and events around them(2010, 298).
Extending the time in which the public has access to news is seen as a positive devel-
opment by the industry. However, the constant presence of ambient journalism
shifted the news consumption towards non-proprietary platforms, but letting news
consumption exist outside traditional journalistic outlets further decreased news
organisationsauthority and control (Westlund and Ekstr
om 2018), including the rise
of disinformation campaigns. To address this problem, news organisations have
attempted to provide more direct and personalised news experiences. As mentioned,
news publishersprimary motivation in pushing content out is to get those who
receive or view it to click the embedded links, bringing them back to the publishers
own outlets(Thurman 2018, 1425).
In this study, we are particularly interested in the push notification features related
to personalising temporal components of news consumption. Personalisation and
push notifications are separate models that work well combined, as personalisation is
supposed to allow audiences to customise their news experience. Indeed, mobile
alerts and push notifications are part of the taxonomy of personalisation that news
organisations are including in their distribution packages (Thurman and Schifferes
2012). However, personalisation of news presents several challenges to news organisa-
tions: (a) conflicting reading objectives; (b) difficulty of filtering information to fit user
interests; (c) ways to generate a user profile; (d) novelty of information; and (e) the
depth of personalisation (Lavie et al. 2010). However, the depth of personalisations is
particularly problematic, as the range of news personalisation is diverse and allows
topic and location customisation that is either human-driven or algorithmically driven
(see Haim, Graefe, and Brosius 2018; Zuiderveen Borgesius et al. 2016). These tools
and possibilities mean outlets have the ability to learn what people want to consume,
and can then adapt and provide this content. This, therefore, suggests that there is
more at stake from personalisation options than increased audience agency. Instead,
the news gap(the difference between what news producers believe to be important,
and what audiences actually want) could actually be slowly closing because of news
personalisation (Boczkowski and Mitchelstein 2013).
Distinct Patterns of News Use? Adapting to the Audience
Time and personalisation are tactics that news organisations have always used to
reach specific audiences. Historically, morning papers and evening papers often
offered different types of content targeting different audiences. In west-northern
Europe and the United States, morning papers were aimed at up-market readers, while
evening tabloids offered more popular content (Westlund and F
ardigh 2011).
Newspapers and TV broadcasts had specific times of consumption connected to publi-
cation or broadcasting times. Audiences had to tune in to catchthe news.
The transition to digital has seen stronger segmentations of newsreaders, spreading
news consumption more evenly during the day, rising steadily from early morning
until 2pm, flattening until a peak between 7pm and 9pm, then dropping for the rest
of the night (Read 2017). Moreover, an analysis of time spent consuming news online
showed that for each hour of the day there is much less of a pattern with reach, with
three distinct peaks of news consumption: 67pm, 45pm, and 121pm(Read 2017,
n.p.). However, mobile news consumption in isolation shows much flatter distribution
from 6am until 12am, meaning mobile audiences consume news in spare moments
throughout the day (Benton 2011). This is consistent with Molyneuxs(2018) and Van
Damme and colleagues(2015) assessment on mobile news consumption as a more
frequent, brief check-ups to see what is new. This practice of news snackingis pre-
sent on other platforms but more prevalent on mobile (Molyneux 2018). What remains
unclear is whether push notifications attempt to fill those moments of snacking, or
whether they are the actual reason for those brief check-ups.
Heinderyckx suggests that instant updates, regardless of ones location, is now in
the DNA of the information society(2011, 112). Yet this was not always the case, nor
has it always been audiencesdesire. Comparing 20112014 with 20042005, Costera
Meijer and Groot Kormelink (2015) find that idle micro-periods(e.g., bus stop, bath-
room, waiting for appointments) were padded with news to a larger extent in
20112015. In 20042005, participants did not want news on their mobile phones (via
SMS) as they interpreted it as an unwelcome interruption. While contemporary push
notifications remain interruptive, the fact that users signed up for updates made them
welcome the alerts, and news became integrated alongside other online activities.
Costera Meijer and Groot Kormelink describe the checking cycle,in which people
check email, social network apps, news, etc, in quick sessions: The aim is to continu-
ously stay on top of all that happens in your personal life and the world at large
(2015, 670).
The widespread use of readersmetrics and analytics informs newsrooms about the
patterns of audience consumption, allowing newsworkers to plan their distribution
patterns (see Zamith 2018). This implies that news organisations follow a strategy that
fits the consumption patterns of their readers when planning mobile alerts, strength-
ening outletsaudience orientation (Ferrer-Conill and Tandoc 2018). However, we
believe the increase of push notifications both follow traditional consumption tempo-
ralities by pushing news predominantly when audiences consume news, while at the
same time capitalising on fragmented news snackingby reaching out at specific
times and bringing users back to proprietary platforms, instead of letting users
roam online.
Theoretical Synthesis and Research Questions
The complexity of news temporalities has shifted from a planned, almost rhythmical,
news distribution to a more constant, ubiquitous ambient journalism(Hermida 2010).
Particularly with mobile, we see a convergence between how news is disseminated
online and how news is consumed on mobile (Molyneux 2018). However, research tells
us that the emergence of push notifications owes its expansion to brand loyalty and
an attempt to bring audiences to news organisationsproprietary platforms (Westlund
2015). Moreover, push notifications afford processes of news personalisation (Thurman
and Schifferes 2012) which make it easier for the patterns of news dissemination to
match the fragmented snackingtimes. This would suggest the news gap might be
shrinking as the current process of journalistic audience orientation becomes institu-
tionalised (Ferrer-Conill and Tandoc 2018).
Keightley and Downey made a call to pay attention to both the temporality of the
news and audience temporalities and their interplay(2018, 106). We argue that push
notifications are a channel used by news organisations to access news audiences directly
and extend the time when they consume news. To support our argument, this study
investigates the temporal patterns of push notification in mobile devices by Northwestern
European news oganisations and whether those patterns match the identified patterns of
mobile news consumption. The first research question focuses on these patterns:
RQ1: What are the times in which news organisations send push notifications to their
mobile audiences?
Allowing personalisation on temporal aspects or not show who has control over
the rhythms and rituals of mobile news consumption. If news organisations try to
accommodate the patterns of audience consumption, we can assume push notification
services should offer temporal personalisation features. The absence of these features
may point to an attempt to impose the temporal framework that news organisations
consider relevant. Our second research question focuses on personalisation features:
RQ2: What are the temporal personalisation options that news organisations offer in their
push notifications services?
Mobile news consumption is contingent on national and cultural context (Westlund
2010) and different news organisations address their audiences differently. This means we
have reasons to believe there are inherent differences in the distribution patterns of push
notifications according to country and outlet type. However, the overarching temporalities
of push notifications and the relative proximity of our countries might reveal a more uni-
fied practice. Our third research question investigates the studys comparative aspect:
RQ3: How do news organisations compare in their use of push notification according to
country, mode, and type of outlet?
Pilot Study
A pilot study was carried out in late 2017/early 2018 to determine the extent to which
it was possible to gather and analyse the notifications. The research gap in this area
meant there was much trial and error in setting up the tools to ensure the correct
apps and settings were in place to harvest the notifications, making the pilot an
invaluable stage. The pilot period lasted 4 months, with various tweaks throughout,
and led to a number of changes for the second data collection: (i) when opening the
app and checking the options, ensuring that only the default content settings in each
news app were used for harvesting the notifications; (ii) changes in how the data was
exported to ensure no issues with the multiple language characters present; (iii)
changes in the sample countries and outlets. It also provided an estimate for the size
of the dataset and allowed some tentative areas of interest to emerge, which helped
shape the main studys research design.
Sample and Context
Once the sample and collection method were refined, data collection began in
October 2018 until April 2019. However, to avoid seasonal interference because of the
holiday period, we decided the analysis would be limited to the first 3 months of
2019, from January 1 to March 31, 2019. This does not eliminate all seasonality con-
cerns but was a necessary compromise. The nine countries were chosen for relative
geographic and cultural proximity in Northwestern Europe. Alongside geographic
proximity, we also chose these countries because push notifications are relatively
popular in all: in another study, more than 10% of audiences in all our included coun-
tries claimed to have received a notification in the previous week (Newman
et al. 2018).
Table 1 lists each country and outlet by mode (legacy print brand, broadcast,
online-only), and distinguishes between commercial outlets and public service broad-
casters. These distinctions help delineate the sample and find commonalities between
the outlets. The starting point for the selection of outlets within each country was the
2018 Reuters Digital News Report and its country-level results for top brands: online,
identifying the most popular outlets. The aim was to have four outlets from each
country: ideally this would be the four most popular online brands based on the
Digital News Report data, but this was not always possible as (a) not all brands had
news apps; and (b) not all apps use push notifications. Therefore, we chose the top
four outlets in the list of popular brands that met our selection criteria. There are two
countries in which only three outlets are used: first, the United Kingdom, in which
there was no fourth brand deemed suitable. For example, the MailOnline/DailyMail
outlet is popular but its app makes scant use of notifications (discovered during the
pilot period) so would have skewed the sample, while other known brands such as
the Daily Telegraph did not use alerts. Therefore, we stuck with the three most popular
UK outlets: the BBC,Guardian, and Sky News. In Sweden, the pilot period and research
design included the SVT public broadcaster, but a technical issue meant the notifica-
tions were not saved until near the end of the sample, so we had to exclude it from
the study. A similar technical issue was identified with NorwaysVG which was unfor-
tunate given it is the countrys most popular online brand; this was identified early in
the process and a fourth replacement was used (Aftenposten).
These issues demonstrate some of the pitfalls and limitations of such an exploratory
project. Moreover, the variable and ephemeral nature of digital news is a challenge
which most content analyses on digital news must address (see Karlsson and Sjøvaag
2016). Thus, we recognise that there can be no certainty that the content captured
fully replicates the content received by other users with different devices, operating
systems, app versions, or location-based settings. Furthermore, our data are based on
free versions of the apps: subscribers may receive different options or additional notifi-
cation content. It is, therefore, crucial to note that our empirical material comprises all
the notifications we captured, but does not necessarily replicate what all users of
these apps experienced during the same period.
Data Collection and Analysis
All 34 apps were downloaded via the Google Play store on an Android device (LG G3)
located in Dublin, Ireland. When the apps were first opened and the settings reviewed,
the available customisation options were audited and noted; attention was focussed
Table 1. The 34 outlets and nine countries under study.
Country News outlet % who use weekly
RTL Info (French) 52 Print
RTL Info (French) 37 Broadcast
Population: 11.35m Nieuwsblad (Flemish) 36 Print
Notifications: 12% RTBF (French) 30 Broadcast (PBS)
Denmark DR Nyheder 37 Broadcast (PBS)
Population: 5.75m TV2 34 Broadcast
Notifications: BT 23 Print
Ekstra-Bladet 27 Print
France 20 Minutes 15 Print
Population: 67.1m Le Monde 14 Print
Notifications: 15% France Info 13 Broadcast (PBS)
Le Figaro 13 Print
Germany Spiegel 17 Print (magazine)
Population: 82.8m Taggesschau ARD 14 Broadcast
Notifications: 10% n-tv 14 Broadcast
Focus Online 13 Print (magazine)
Ireland 34 Online-only
Population: 4.8m RT
E News Now 30 Broadcast (PBS)
Notifications: 17% Independent 30 Print
The Irish Times 21 Print
Netherlands 46 Online-only
Population: 17.1m NOS 30 Broadcast (PBS)
Noficiations: 15% Algemeen Dagblad 25 Print
De Telegraaf 23 Print
Norway TV 2 40 Broadcast
Population: 5.26m Dagbladet 34 Print
Notifications: 13% NRK 31 Broadcast (PBS)
Aftenposten 28 Print
Sweden Aftonbladet 46 Print
Population: 10m Expressen 32 Print
Notifications: 22% Dagens Nyheter 18 Print
United Kingdom BBC News 43 Broadcast (PBS)
Population: 66m Guardian 15 Print
Notifications: 14% Sky News 11 Broadcast
Data on use of notifications over the past week (%), and popularity of news outlets, taken from Reuters
Digital News Report 2018 (Newman et al. 2018).
In Belgium, the two most popular French and Flemish outlets were used.
on the temporal-based features, such as whether there were hours during which alerts
could be turned on or off, or options of regular bulletin-type alerts at certain hours/
certain days. None of the apps were adjusted in terms of which notification content to
receive: the only changes were to accept alerts when prompted, or to turn the main
newsoption on if the default was off. Another app, Notification Saver Pro, allowed
saving and exporting all the push notifications to a spreadsheet. The database is lim-
ited to the alerts text (and associated data such as timestamp) as it was not possible
to save rich media, such as images, embedded in the notification. We collected 7092
push notifications, with the outlet, date, timestamp, and text all recorded.
Once exported, the database was refined and elaborated on to include additional
assets for each notification (e.g., country, type and mode), while edits were also made
such as adjusting the timestamp where needed to accurately display the time the
notification was sent from its original country. For analytical purposes, it made sense
to split the hours of the day into segments: (i) Overnight: 1am6am; (ii) Morning com-
mute: 6am9am; (iii) Late morning: 9am12pm; (iv) Lunchtime: 12pm 2pm; (v) Late
afternoon: 2pm4pm; (vi) Evening commute: 4pm 7pm; (vii) Late evening/night-
time: 7pm1am. This grouping allowed for a more conducive analysis given the
studys emphasis on times of day, rather than the specifics of each hour.
Results and Discussion
Time of Day for Push Notifications
Our first research question addressed the times at which news organisations send
push notifications to their mobile audiences. The first temporal distinction functioned
as an important starting point, exploring the difference in usage patterns between the
traditional working week and weekends. Figure 1 shows how, among all outlets, there
was an even spread throughout the week, with a dip at weekends. Some outlets did
not send a single notification during Saturday or Sunday (BT in Denmark, Dagbladet in
Norway both had low usage overall), while the weekend was less than 10% of out-
put for Ekstra-Bladet (Denmark), Le Monde (France), Focus Online (Germany), NRK
(Norway), Aftonbladet (Sweden), and BBC (UK). Conversely, weekends comprised more
than 25% of output for 11 outlets. We typically see variety between organisations
within each country, but there is one strong national-level/regional pattern: all four
Dutch outlets, and three out of four Belgian outlets use notifications at a relatively
high level at weekends.
This daily breakdown suggests two things: there is day-to-day fluctuation in daily
usage during the week, indicating no hard rules regarding the same number of notifi-
cations outlets send each day. Second, it highlights variation between organisations
and, from a temporal consideration, indicates how some outlets may try to capitalise
on weekend down time.We interpret this as an attempt to attract readers when
they have more time to spend on their phones without the distractions of the work/
school routines, while others, whether strategicly or incidentally, do not target and
alert readers during this traditionally quieter time.
When looking at all outlets across 24 h of the day, there is scant use overnight,
with Figure 2 showing 12pm1pm as the most popular for push notifications among
all 34 outlets. This midday hour is among the peaks identified by Read (2017), along-
side 4pm5pm and 6pm7pm hours also previously highlighted, but the key finding
here is how activity is occurring throughout the day which may align with the fre-
quent, brief cheques spread out over the day (Molyneux 2018).
Grouping the hours of the day into segments allows for a clearer comparative pic-
ture, illustrated in Figure 3. When grouped into seven segments, and highlighted by
country, we see broadly similar patterns, with activity spikes in all countries during the
morning commute following a typically quiet overnight period (the United Kingdom
and Germany are the only countries with any notable overnight activity). Push notifica-
tion activity in all countries apart from Belgium and Denmark continues to increase
into the late morning, typically followed by a dip into lunchtime and the late after-
noon (apart from in France and Netherlands where activity levels continue to increase
into lunchtime). Following a late-afternoon dip, activity in all nine countries then
Figure 1. The breakdown of notifications sent by each outlet by day of the week, highlighting the
distinction between weekdays and weekends.
spikes again, with strong usage of notifications during the evening commute and the
late evening. It is worth noting that in the Scandinavian countries the spike starts ear-
lier showing how the national context has an impact on news consumption patterns.
The country patterns are helpful for national comparison and it is also useful to
remember the individual activity within each news organisation which varies within
country. Figure 4 shows some of this variation: Het Laatste (Belgium) and The Irish
Times (Ireland) both show the typical pattern outlined above, but Ekstra-Bladet
(Denmark); Le Figaro (France); Focus Online (Germany); Guardian (UK); and Dagbladet
(Norway) are all examples of divergence from this pattern. What is most notable is
that those whose temporal patterns are atypical are among the same organisations
Figure 2. The number of notifications, from all 34 outlets, sent each hour, showing relatively
steady activity throughout the daytime hours.
Figure 3. The fluctuation in each country by segment of the day, based on the percentage of
each outlets output.
which do not use push notifications heavily. This suggests that the outlets which have
incorporated notifications as a regular daily routine have established similar distribu-
tion patterns that are replicated both intra-organisational and transnational.
The notificationscontent is beyond this studys scope, but there is one outlet
worth highlighting at this point: Le Figaro. Although 16 is a small number of alerts
over the 90 days, it reveals a lot about the organisations strategy. All 16 notifications
were sent between 7pm and 7.40pm on weekdays, and all contained the same text:
Discover the most-read articles of the day.This replication of the same notification
around the same time indicates a clear strategy, to nudge users in the evening and
direct them towards the Le Figaro app. However, it was not an everyday occurrence
and appears more sporadic in that regard, perhaps acting as an occasional nudge
rather than anything more structured or forceful. Elsewhere, the temporal patterns do
not appear to be tied to the format or mode of the outlets with little variation: the
two online-only outlets have more activity in the latter part of the day.
To give further insight into the variations evident within countries, the strip chart in
Figure 5 uses Sweden, Norway and Denmark to illustrate the time of day at which
each notification was sent, presenting an overall visualisation of the density and hot-
spots throughout the day among these 11 outlets. For Dagens Nyheter, a Swedish
daily, there is a heavy stream of activity between 6am and 11pm, a pattern mirrored
by Aftenposten, a Norwegian afternoon paper and the Norwegian public broadcast
NRK. The traditional timelines of distribution of their analogue media does not seem
to be replicated in the notification distribution. Even among the outlets that use notifi-
cations more lightly, they are generally well-scattered throughout the day, but with
some notable clusters, such as NRK sending notifications at around 7.30am or Ekstra-
Bladet at around 5pm.
Personalisation Options and Temporal Settings
The second research question enquired about temporal personalisation options for
push notifications as some outlets offered customisation settings within the apps to
Figure 4. The time segments notifications are sent at from selected outlets. Het Laatste and The
Irish Times indicate the typical temporal pattern, while the others are more atypical.
enhance user experience. Our audit of all apps allowed us to record the temporal
options offered to users, rather than content-specific options. As with the general
usage patterns, significant variation existed between outlets, but three patterns relat-
ing to temporality were identified: quiet modes, breaking news, and digests. First,
some apps provided the opportunity to have explicit quiet times, typically overnight,
but some allowed users to specify the exact time for sound and vibrations to be
turned off (France Info,Spiegel in Germany, Focus Online in Germany, Aftenposten in
Norway). Both De Telegraaf and offered night modesrelating to visuals, invert-
ing the apps colour to be darker. In one version of the app, Dagens Nyheter in
Sweden offered a quiet timeoption, but this feature was seemingly later removed.
These options seem to acknowledge that notifications should not be too pervasive
and intrusive, and there are times when audiences do not want to be disturbed,
regardless of the notifications content. Also, by allowing users to set the exact hours
themselves, news outlets are recognising individualsown routines and granting
them control.
Second, there is an inherent stress on immediacy built into the notion of breaking
news, and many apps still draw on this immediacy element as the basis for notifica-
tions. The most common term was a general, catch-all newsword (e.g., RTL News,
RTBF, and Het Laatste in Belgium; Le Figaro in France; NOS and Algemeen Dagblad in
Netherlands; TV2 and NRK in Norway; Aftonbladet and Dagens Nyheter in Sweden).
Elsewhere, distinctions between news and breaking news were sometimes evident:
Ein Ireland has the option of both Breaking Newsand News; GermanysSpiegel
has options for Breaking Newsand Important News;DR in Denmark extricates
Breaking Newsand Top News Story.For some, such as The Journal (Ireland) and
Ekstra-Bladet (Denmark), breaking newsis effectively the only option when turning
push notifications on or off, suggesting alerts are ultimately a proxy for news that war-
rants immediate dissemination. Others do not ascribe any descriptive detail to a sim-
ple on/off notification setting (e.g., The Irish Times and Independent in Ireland;
Figure 5. The notifications sent by the 11 outlets in Sweden, Norway and Denmark. Each circle
represents a single notification sent during the 90-day sample.
Dagbladet in Norway; BBC and Sky News in the United Kingdom) which may grant out-
lets more flexibility with what they push. This ultimately establishes two categories of
news: (i) what is immediate, and (ii) what is perceived by newsworkers as most rele-
vant, the latter category of which is deemed worthy enough to interrupt a day, even
if there is no inherent immediacy.
The third pattern relates to established structures and how notifications are regular-
ised with the aim of being incorporated into usersdaily rhythms of news consump-
tion. This was evident in options that packaged the news for audiences at set times of
the day and directed them to organisationsproprietary platforms: for example, Le
Figaro, highlighting its print background, offered a tomorrow in Le Figaroeach night;
Table 2. The frequency patterns of each outlet.
Number of notifications
Most notifications per
single day
Number of days (/90)
notifications were sent
Belgium 1142
Het Laatste 498 13 89
RTL Info 18 1 18
Nieuwsblad 528 12 90
RTBF 98 7 37
Denmark 733
DR Nyheder 407 13 90
TV2 278 18 43
BT 26 2 22
Ekstra-Bladet 22 2 19
France 980
20 Minutes 678 15 90
Le Monde 25 2 22
France Info 261 15 41
Le Figaro 16 1 16
Germany 513
Spiegel 323 9 86
Tagesschau ARD 92 5 55
n-tv 75 4 45
Focus Online 23 2 21
Ireland 621 37 3 29
E News Now 212 8 78
Independent 203 5 80
The Irish Times 169 9 41
Netherlands 587 59 4 41
NOS 15 2 14
Algemeen Dagblad 380 14 88
De Telegraaf 133 7 67
Norway 1087
TV 2 693 20 90
Dagbladet 27 2 23
NRK 50 12 27
Aftenposten 317 9 80
Sweden 927
Aftonbladet 29 2 24
Expressen 208 11 41
Dagens Nyheter 690 20 82
UK 502
BBC News 43 3 31
Guardian 59 3 37
Sky News 400 10 89
Total 7092
TV2 in Denmark offered Todays overview;Spiegel Daily in Germany had an evening
update, NRK in Norwaysmorning summary; and DR in Denmark had options for a
6.30am weekday/8.30am weekend daily briefing, five important updates at midday on
weekdays, five important updates at 4pm on weekdays, and todays most important
stories at 9.30pm on weekdays. It makes clear to the user what time and days these
notification updates will arrive, and these options serve as a reminder of how news,
and news dissemination, remain aligned with routines and temporal rhythms prevail-
ing in the freeflowing digital news space. Most of these additional notifications were
not included in this sample as the default app settings had them turned off, but the
options available show a willingness to allow audiences partial control over what and
when content from news apps appears on their lockscreen.
Variation Between Countries and Outlets
The third research question asked about the comparison between countries, type/
mode of news organisations. As demonstrated thus far, there are some variations iden-
tified within and between countries, and Table 2 gives an overview of the frequency
patterns across the nine countries.
When looking at the total output of notifications from the 34 outlets, the variation
is sizeable, from just 15 at NOS (Netherlands), to 693 at TV2 (Norway), with a mean
use of 208 notifications over the 90 days, or 2.3 per day. Most countries appear to
have one or two organisations which frequently use notifications, and then some
organisations which use them much more lightly, suggesting no clear national pat-
terns. Comparing outlets by mode (Figure 6), we can see that the two online-only
news outlets in the sample ( in the Netherlands, and in Ireland) are
among the lowest users of push notifications. This suggests that, despite their
Figure 6. The number of notifications sent by the outlets, categorised by mode. Public service
broadcasters are marked with .
association with networked communication, push notifications are not necessarily an
intrinsic part of the digital-native output. We can also see that print brands are slightly
heavier users than broadcast, but again, the difference appears modest. Figure 6 also
indicates the distinction between commercial outlets and public service broadcasters;
overall, commercial outlets are heavier users perhaps indicating that notifications
may be associated with a market-driven logic but this is not universal.
The highest number of notifications sent by any outlet on an individual day was 20
(TV2 in Norway and Dagens Nyheter in Sweden), with 18 sent by DenmarksTV2, sug-
gesting an overall culture of heavy notification use among certain Nordic outlets. Four
outlets sent a notification on every single day of the 90-day sample (Nieuwsblad in
Belgium, TV2 in Norway, DR in Denmark, and 20 Minutes in France), while Sky News
(United Kingdom) and Het Laatste (Belgium) had just one day without notifications.
For these organisations, this suggests that notifications form a crucial part of the daily
output, incorporated into the daily rhythm of news production and dissemination. For
outlets at the other end of usage patterns, push notifications appear to play only a
minor, sporadic role: NOS (Netherlands) only sent notifications on 14/90 days, with
similar patterns from Le Figaro in France (16/90), RTL Info in Belgium (18/90 days), and
Ekstra-Bladet in Denmark (19/90). Whether this light usage is strategic or incidental is
impossible to tell from this data, but it illustrates the divergence in usage patterns
both across Northwestern Europe and within individual countries.
The results show that mobile push notifications are a remarkably consistent part of
news distribution channels among the European outlets studied. More concretely,
three major conclusions emerge. First, news outlets try to gain access and attract audi-
ence attention throughout the day, as well as at key moments such as first thing in
the morning from 7am, which is when the notifications typically start coming in. In
Newman and colleagues(2019) proposition of four key news moments,it appears
that push notifications fit most closely with the updatedand interceptedcatego-
ries. Although there were variations identified with specific outlets, the broad pattern
suggests that news outlets are seeking to both integrate with, and disrupt, the audien-
ces activity. This implies that push notifications generally follow a hybrid temporal dis-
tribution that combines some timely spikes by targeting users during downtime, while
commuting or in the evening, but crucially still spread notifications throughout
the day as outlets maintaining activity while users are typically at work or in educa-
tion. These notifications during low consumption timesuggest that outlets are hop-
ing to attract attention and capitalise on users’“checking cycles(Groot Kormelink and
Costera Meijer 2020) and their audiences existence in an ambient newsenvironment
(Hermida 2010), and to embed themselves as part of the overall perpetual connectivity
afforded by smartphone devices.
Second, the diversity of customisable temporal features offered by news outlets
follow little consensus. The available options facilitate individual users’“explicitly
registered and/or implicitly determined preferences(Thurman and Schifferes 2012,
776). It seems notifications can capture both the explicit and implicit: certain
settings facilitate explicit preferences, while most outlets maintain temporal control
over notifications, expecting their judgement of what is important and appropriate
to align with audience demands. Little agency is given to the audience. This may
be informed by data on audience consumption patterns or it may be more driven
by newsroom-centric decision-making and practices with little awareness of
user behaviours.
Third, there are similar patterns across national settings in which news outlets have
varying degrees in push notifications use. Within each of the nine countries surveyed,
the frequency of notifications demonstrated how typically there were one or two domin-
ant outlets who use push notifications daily, while the others used them less frequently.
Instead, we see more distinctions among mode/type of news outlets: commercial outlets
tend to use push notifications more, which suggests that notifications follow a more
market-focused logic, while legacy print outlets use more push notifications while online-
only do not. This suggests that print outlets which have typically lost more audience
in recent decades use push notifications to regain contact with the audience. While we
have not explored notification content, examples like Le Figaro show that notifications
invite users to check the news at the outlets proprietary platforms.
Following Keightley and Downeys call to analyse the interplaybetween the tem-
porality of news and the audience temporality (2018, 106), this study contributes to
journalism studies with an original insight into how news organisations are using push
notifications and how this might relate to audience behaviour and activity. It offers
the first empirical overview of push notification use across Northwestern European
news outlets with a novel method for data collection. A focus on the temporality of
push notifications also provides insights in the newsroom strategies (or lack of). Those
outlets using notifications actively and consistently have incorporated them as part of
the daily news output, whereas others use them more intermittently. Among outlets
sending more notifications, the temporal patterns are surprisingly consistent, but those
using notifications less frequently are less consistent in their distribution patterns. This
suggests that increased use of notification is supported by some sort of planned strat-
egy. In general, overnight notifications were rare, pointing to structural factors influ-
encing push notification distribution. On the one hand, notifications are not
necessarily driven by news events themselves and the exact moment of occurrence;
rather, there is a prioritising and centring of when audiences are active, reinforcing
the audience orientation. This is a structural disruption of traditional news selection
processes as the apparent selection of personalised news is based on audience data.
On the other hand, news production practicalities and staffing are central as, despite
the potential of 24-hour news cycles, many newsrooms will still only be lightly staffed
if at all overnight, thus potentially indicating that the sending of notifications is
directly tied to the hours of newsroom activity. Yet given the possibility of automation
for sending notifications, the avoidance of overnight alerts could also point to a stra-
tegic choice. Similarly, the general decline in notification use at weekends suggests an
inherent routinisation to the notification dissemination: this could potentially be
accounted for by a smaller newsroom staffing and general news slow-down at week-
ends, or perhaps news organisations taking a conscious decision to curtail the alerts
during these 2 days.
This leads on to one major limitation of our empirical material: we cannot deter-
mine whether the patterns identified in this study are strategic or incidental. While
outlets like the New York Times build staffing and strategies around push notifications
(Brown 2018), we cannot assume that such resources are available to smaller and local
European newsrooms, or that notifications are even prioritised in such a manner.
Elsewhere, it should be noted that the countries studied here are not the same
regions from which secondary data on audience usage patterns was obtained in our
review of the literature, so there may be national variations which could provide fur-
ther insight into mobile use at a country-by-country level.
We believe future research should pursue four major areas. First, special attention
should be cast on the alerts through content analysis on data such as that used here:
what issues and events are being pushed by news organisations, and the extent to
which they remain committed to pushing alerts primarily about breaking news or
whether there is a focus on promoting their own exclusive, non-breaking content in
an effort to attract readers to their apps. Second, direct input from those involved in
sending notifications and how the alerts fit with overall digital newsroom strategies.
Third, there is the need to explore the mobile news eco-system more broadly, and the
updates provided by aggregators such as Apple News and Google News. These have
received scant scholarly attention thus far yet are an integral part of many users
mobile news experiences that should be expanded beyond the Northwestern
European context. And finally, we should investigate how news consumers navigate
push notifications as a part of their daily practices. If this is part of the ways in which
news organisations aim to regain the societal and commercial relevance of journalism,
scholars should learn more about the dynamics that guide push notification use.
Disclosure statement
No potential conflict of interest was reported by the author(s).
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... Bu çalışmada mobil bildirimlerin; haber dağıtımının, sosyal medyayı ve haber toplayıcıları atlayarak doğrudan okura ulaştığı, haber kişiselleştirilmesinin aracısını ve kontrolünü değiştirdiği, haber kuruluşları ile okur arasındaki iletişimi güçlendirdiği savunulmaktadır. Toplamda otuz dört medya kuruluşunun yedi bini aşkın bildirimini analiz eden çalışma, haber kuruluşlarının mobil kanalı, kullanıcıların dikkatini çekmek ve dikkati sürdürmek için kullandığını ortaya koymuştur (Wheatley & Ferrer-Conill, 2021). ...
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Gündelik yaşamın pek çok alanında kullanılan mobil cihazlar, çeşitli uygulamalar aracılığıyla kullanıcının deneyim ve tercihlerine ilişkin verilerin toplanmasında etkin olan araçlardır. İçerik üreticileri tarafından zaman ve mekân sınırı olmaksızın kullanıcıya içerikleri iletme olanağı sunan mobil cihazlar, zamanla kullanıcıların habere eriştiği ana mecralar haline gelmiştir. Günümüzde, başlıca haber kaynağının çevrimiçi kaynaklar olduğu Türkiye’de, temel gelir modeli reklama dayalı olan dijital ana akım haber medyası, kullanıcı etkileşim oranları ve trafiklerini yüksek tutmak için tüm mecraları etkin şekilde kullanmaya yönelmiştir. Google Haberler, Flipboard, Bundle gibi, farklı kaynaklardan haberleri derleyip kişiselleştirme algoritmalarıyla kullanıcılara sunan haber uygulamalarından faydalanan medya kuruluşları, kendi uygulamalarını da geliştirmiştir. Bu çalışmada, Similarweb “Haber” ve “Medya” kategorisinde, aylık ziyaret sayısına göre üst sıralarda gelen Sözcü, Hürriyet, Sabah ve Habertürk’ün mobil uygulamaları incelenmiştir. Hâlihazırda mülkiyet yoğunlaşması olan Türkiye’deki medya endüstrisinde mevcut güç ilişkilerinin dijital medya ortamında da sürdüğü varsayımından hareket eden bu araştırmada; anlık bildirim (push notification) yoğunluklarının gündeme göre ve uygulamalar arasında farklılaştığı görülmüş, uygulamalarda çokça hatayla karşılaşıldığı ve bildirim yoğunluğunun kullanıcı deneyimine zarar verdiği sonucuna varılmıştır. Anlık bildirimlerde politika haberleri ağırlıktayken, öne çıkarılan aktörler Cumhurbaşkanı Erdoğan ile bakanlar olmuştur. Çalışmanın sonucunda mobil uygulama bildirimlerinin ana akım medyanın içeriklerini, kullanıcının gündelik yaşam temposunda dikkatini yönelttiği yere taşıma olanağı sağladığı görülmüş; telefonların ekranlarının, anlık bildirimler aracılığıyla toplumdaki egemenlerin ve siyasal iktidar temsilcilerinin mesajlarının öne çıkarıldığı alanlar olarak konumlandırıldığı ortaya konulmuştur.
... Multiple information and curation operations act simultaneously or sequentially, leading to a complex online information consumption experience. For example, news providers not only try to attract audiences by pushing news notifications throughout the day but also compete with one another by simultaneously selecting several focal times for dissemination (Wheatley & Ferrer-Conill, 2021), thereby exacerbating the information load that the general public must handle. ...
... Compared to traditional news media, the online news environment displays highly distinct temporal characteristics. Online news is disseminated 24/7 (Wheatley & Ferrer-Conill, 2021). Meanwhile, information dissemination and user behavior are fragmented and clustered into short periods (Barabasi, 2005;Rodriguez et al., 2014). ...
The production and consumption of online news are usually under a bursty temporal pattern. However, little is known about the psychological and cognitive impacts of such bursty consumption of online news. The study employs a 2 (filled-interval length) × 2 (empty-interval length) × 2 (empty-interval burstiness) mixed design experiment to examine how temporal characteristics in online news consumption influence audiences’ cognition and retention. Specifically, three temporal characteristics in online news consumption—filled-interval length, empty-interval length, and empty-interval burstiness—are controlled in the experiment. We instructed fifty-two participants to read a sequence of health-related news posts under various temporal settings while tracking their eye movements. The results showed that (1) empty-interval length increased retention, (2) empty-interval burstiness increased retention but did not have a main effect on cognitive load, and (3) filled-interval length, empty-interval length, and burstiness jointly influence cognitive overload and retention level. The study highlights the holistic perspective in considering the information exposure effect, thus revealing the complex relationship between temporal information characteristics and cognitive reactions and offering empirical suggestions to improve information system design.
... It should be noted that the use of push notifications is relevant for reputable media that are fighting for their own audience. Push notifications allow readers of certain media to subscribe to current news (even paid content) and receive them bypassing news aggregators and social media [16]. At the current stage of development, push notifications are widely used both abroad and in Ukraine; ...
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The article summarises the approaches to the classification of innovative marketing communications used within the development of modern trends in the promotion of goods/services. The main goal of the study is to systematise and determine the prospects of innovative marketing communications used in Ukrainian and foreign markets. The systematisation of the literature on and approaches to solving the problem of the development of marketing communications has revealed that, despite the existence of a certain body of scientific and theoretical studies, there is a need to study a set of tools of this category, which are typical of both foreign and Ukrainian markets. The relevance of solving the scientific problem is that the modern role of marketing communications is a priority component of the success of both the entire marketing system and performance indicators of businesses, and the study of their current trends is necessary for improving market positions. The article studies systematisation and identification of the prospects of innovative marketing communications in the following logical order: description of approaches to the communications in Ukrainian and foreign markets; defining the prospects of their development and use. The methodological tools of the research included the system approach method and the method of trends. The study focuses on the years 2021–2022. The US and some European countries (including Ukraine) were chosen as the object of the study, since these countries were the focus of the existing scientific analysis of the studied issues. The article presents the results of an empirical analysis of the implementation of innovative marketing communications, which proved that the foreign market trends are generally similar to Ukrainian ones. The study empirically confirms and theoretically proves that countries that have an active business environment, even in case of a developing economy, quite effectively implement the latest approaches to the management of marketing communications, because their composition and level of efficiency affect economic and market results. The results of the study can be useful for Ukrainian businesses to apply in practice in terms of choosing optimal marketing communications as well as for scientists in the context of the development of scientific research and studying the current state of the issue under study.
... Las alertas por SMS constituyen los primeros contenidos informativos en el móvil y han sido analizadas por diversos investigadores desde hace más de una década (Costa;Piñeiro, 2010). En la actualidad, las notificaciones push se reinventan y ocupan un lugar relevante para los principales medios de comunicación europeos (Wheatley;Ferrer-Conil, 2020). La masificación de los dispositivos móviles y sus altas cifras de adopción ha facilitado también el resurgimiento de las newsletters o boletines (Fagerlund, 2016). ...
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Los móviles ocupan un lugar central en el conjunto de las innovaciones disruptivas que surgen en los últimos años en el entorno de los medios digitales. Este estudio describe el uso de los dispositivos móviles como plataforma de distribución y como herramienta periodística, convirtiéndose en grandes aliados de los medios. Palabras clave: medios digitales, medios nativos digitales, cibermedios, medios de comunicación, dispositivos móviles, periodismo móvil.
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News notifications on smartphones provide a convenient way to stay informed, but their delivery timing can influence user engagement. Despite this, research on the impact of notification timing on reading behavior remains limited. Therefore, we developed NewsMoment, a news aggregation app that monitors user reading patterns and sends news notifications. Our experience sampling study with 46 NewsMoment users revealed four distinct reading modes: typical, comprehensive, scanning, and unengaged. Deep reading, encompassing typical and comprehensive modes, more often occurred during self-initiated browsing rather than through pushed news. Interestingly, shallow reading modes - unengaged and scanning - showed varying prevalence, associated triggers, and engagement, despite their similarities. Importantly, unengaged reading persisted regardless of users' perceived moment opportuneness, whereas scanning reading was more common during inopportune moments. These findings suggest that identifying opportune moments for news reading may primarily reduce scanning reading, without substantially impacting unengaged reading.
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Over recent decades, digital native media have flourished as one of the most important communicative tools in the world, despite certain geographical disparities. Not only is this kind of media here to stay, but they have transitioned from being a feature of the avant-garde to occupying a central space in the digital ecosystem. Despite the diversity of models, difficulties in articulating business models that ensure sustainability, and their lack of financial muscle, native media have opened up renewed options for digital journalism in both the present and the future. By analyzing the current media landscape and a study of the main trends, carried out using a review of the published scientific literature and an analysis of cases from the last five years, this paper explores the horizons of the “new wave” of digital native media that will face the challenges of the second half of this third decade of the millennium. Of course, the future has not yet been written: digital media will have to build from the native space, observing emerging trends, modern technologies, and without giving up on providing quality digital journalism that is based in truthfulness, transparency, the involvement of users and the set of actions that serve the public interest.
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Los medios de comunicación han incorporado las aplicaciones móviles como un canal de información más para con sus audiencias. Esta investigación analiza cuáles son las características y utilización de las notificaciones de las apps de la radiotelevisión pública de Alemania, Francia, Reino Unido y España. El estudio revela que, aunque las características y posibilidades son similares, el empleo de las notificaciones es muy desigual, tanto desde el punto de vista cuantitativo (número de notificaciones por día y horas que envía cada medio) como en lo cualitativo (temática, elaboración, uso de la imagen, etc.).
Television is among the preferred technological devices of the elderly due to their familiarity with its simple interface and because it acts as a sort of companion, being this especially relevant for those living alone. This phenomenon was particularly observed during the social isolation resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. In the most critical period of the health crisis, the consumption of television content among older people and the adoption of other digital solutions aimed at entertainment or social interaction increased significantly. At the same time, technological advances in the television ecosystem have made it possible to include resources capable of making the gadget increasingly interactive and friendly. An example is the use of notifications, a mechanism that consists in displaying messages on the device’s screen, engaging users to a specific topic. TV notifications can act as an information-focused tool with the potential to promote the connection of seniors with their family or friends. In the aforementioned context, the objective of this paper is to identify how TV notifications can contribute to reduce the rates of social isolation among the elderly, offering new forms of interaction with society. For, initially, a literature review was carried out to allow contextualizing the problem. Studies conducted in this field were evaluated to identify whether the television ecosystem would be able to enhance human relationship. These studies supported the construction of a questionnaire focused on identifying the habits of the elderly in relation to the adoption of technological devices, the consumption of television content and the acceptance of notifications in this context. Therefore, this study provides evidence that notifications can connect generations, being an important mechanism to reduce the rates of loneliness among older individuals.
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Audience engagement has become a key concept in contemporary discussions on how news companies relate to the public and create sustainable business models. These discussions are irrevocably tied to practices of monitoring, harvesting and analyzing audience behaviours with metrics, which is increasingly becoming the new currency of the media economy. This article argues this growing tendency to equate engagement to behavioural analytics, and study it primarily through quantifiable data, is limiting. In response, we develop a heuristic theory of audience engagement with news comprising four dimensions—the technical-behavioural, emotional, normative and spatiotemporal—and explicate these in terms of different relations of engagement between human-to-self, human-to-human, human-to-content, human-to-machine, and machine-to-machine. Paradoxically, this model comprises a specific theory of audience engagement while simultaneously making visible that constructing a theory of audience engagement is an impossible task. The article concludes by articulating methodological premises, which future empirical research on audience engagement should consider.
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This paper explores what spending time means from a user perspective. Drawing from three qualitative audience studies that center around the notion of experience, it reveals three complexities regarding time spent in relation to news use. Overall, we find that time spent does not necessarily measure interest in, attention to or engagement with news. First, time spent does not reflect the quality of attention being paid. Second, there is no linear relationship between time spent and interest or engagement. More time spent on news use can be the result of little interest or engagement, and vice versa. Experienced users engage in quick news practices because they are practiced and skillful at using news: they know how to handle and navigate their devices, they can efficiently scan digital environments for new and relevant information, and they are aware of news conventions or title-specific tendencies telling them which parts of news they could skip. Third, different news devices, platforms and genres coincide with different temporal experiences of news.
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As news consumption shifts from desktop to mobile devices, many journalism researchers and stakeholders wonder how this transition will impact news audience behavior. This perspective assumes that changes in where news is consumed are likely to go hand-in-hand with changes in how it is consumed. However, key aspects of media consumption tend to remain remarkably stable regardless of where that consumption takes place. Most notably, media audiences typically congregate around a small number of familiar brands, while ignoring the lesser-known options. In this study, I analyze a year’s worth of U.S.-based online news consumption data to show that the mobile platform is yet another example of how a few media firms comprise a majority of audience attention. I conclude that, when it comes to where audiences turn for news, the mobile platform is a continuation of what has come before.
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La era de los medios móviles ha situado la convergencia comunicativa en un nuevo estadio. La movilidad ha abierto un gran campo en la cambiante sociedad red. La producción científica sobre periodismo móvil ha adquirido un mayor protagonismo gracias a las mejoras técnicas de los dispositivos y a la democratización en el acceso a los contenidos por parte de los usuarios. En los últimos diez años se ha producido una aceleración en las innovaciones tecnológicas que se ha traducido en un mayor interés por esta área de estudio. En este trabajo se analizan los artículos sobre dispositivos móviles y periodismo a fin de definir el momento actual del proceso y situar el papel que ocupan en el escenario convergente. El método ha sido una revisión sistemática de la literatura científica (SLR) de 199 artículos publicados entre enero del 2008 y mayo del 2018 en la base de datos Web of Science. La validación siguió los criterios de inclusión y exclusión, identificación de la base de datos, motores de búsqueda, y evaluación y descripción de resultados. Los hallazgos indican que en Estados Unidos se concentra el mayor número de publicaciones relacionadas con este tema y que el auge de la producción científica sobre periodismo móvil se da en el año 2013. Se concluye que existe un predominio de publicaciones relacionadas con los actantes en detrimento de aquellas que versan sobre actores o audiencias.
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The link between journalism and participation has since long been envisioned and argued to be an important one. However, it is also a complex link. It encompasses how the news media and their social actors actively work towards enabling and engaging citizens as active participants through the digital infrastructures of their proprietary platforms, as well as the ways citizens potentially make use of such opportunities or not in their everyday lives, and how this affects epistemologies of news journalism. However, to date, journalism studies scholars have mostly focused on positive forms of participatory journalism via proprietary platforms, and thus fail to account for and problematize dark participation and participation taking place on social media platforms non-proprietary to the news media. This introduction, and the thematic issue as a whole, attempts to address this void. The introduction discusses three key aspects of journalism’s relationship with participation: 1) proprietary or non-proprietary platforms, 2) participants, and 3) positive or dark participation.
As both news and audiences are increasingly mobile, this introduction calls for intensified research into mobility as a core characteristic of journalism. This special issue explores the intersection of news with mobility in production, distribution and consumption. News has become mobile in a material sense as it is accessed on portable devices; and in a professional sense of being cut adrift from the business models which sustained it, challenged by peripheral actors and alternative news media, and embracing new technologies, new relationships with the audience and new political challenges to its status quo. One task is to adapt research techniques usually applied to fixed phenomena – or at least applied with the intention of fixing them – to something fluid. This is not impossible. All mobilities need an infrastructure on which to move, offering fixed points in a fluid world. Mobility offers critical questions of power and dominance of who is mobile, how, and under what circumstances; in this way, mobility becomes embodied. And the paradigm calls for research into the mobility of journalism and its interaction with similarly fluid, related actualities: blogs, smartphones, audiences, economics, advertisers, government and technology. Each interacts with journalism to deliver diverse realities.
A number of mobile news apps deploy push notifications that appear on users’ locked screens and alert users to breaking news. Push notifications are theoretically important because they transcend the traditional divide between purposeful and incidental news exposure. We analyze whether push notifications affect people’s reported use of a news app and what people learn about the news. In this paper, we report on the results of a 2 (install the CNN or BuzzFeed News app) × 2 (allow notifications, do not allow notifications) experiment. Approximately two weeks after installing the app, study participants were asked to answer questions about their news use and the topics covered by the mobile notifications. Results revealed that notifications increased self-reported use of the app. There also was evidence of learning from the notifications in some instances, but not all. The research provides empirical evidence of the effects of push notifications, adding to a growing literature on mobile news effects.