Jesse Abdenour's research while affiliated with University of Oregon and other places

Publications (15)

Article
The “gap” between journalist and audience expectations could be one reason why news media credibility is generally low. Journalistic expectations are often explored through analysis of the news worker’s role in society. One understudied topic in roles literature is perceptions of newer contextual reporting roles that consider society’s best interes...
Article
Lack of trust is a paramount problem facing journalism. Solutions reporting, which focuses on credible responses to societal problems, could help improve news trust. In addition, narrative journalism has been associated with several positive outcomes. This study tested the novel idea that solutions stories and narrative transportation can positivel...
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Sinclair Broadcast Group, the largest owner of U.S. local television stations, has received recent attention due to its apparent political lean and journalistic practices. This study compared the content and quality of national political news stories at Sinclair and non-Sinclair stations in three television markets. Results indicated evidence of a...
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Investigative journalism’s value to democracy is straightforward: it provides useful information to citizens by exposing wrongdoing and holding powerful institutions accountable. But its financial value is questionable. There are indications that this often-expensive form of reporting can enhance audiences and thereby increase revenue, but very few...
Article
“Sampling” copyrighted works to create new expression has a rich history in creative culture, particularly in hip-hop music, a genre that values revision and recontextualization. However, courts are mixed on whether sampling should be considered fair use. Many courts have found that sampling harms the original artist’s ability to license copyrighte...
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Contextual journalism calls for depth of news reporting rather than “just the facts.” A national survey of local television (TV) journalists indicated the increasing popularity of this more comprehensive reporting form. Although news sociologists contend that local TV routines facilitate the production of quick, less substantive stories, TV respond...
Article
A nationwide content analysis of television stations showed low levels of investigative journalism quality and quantity. Most stories introduced as “investigative” were not investigative by definition. However, in an accompanying survey, about half of respondents said investigative quality and quantity had recently increased at their stations. Util...
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Full-text available
Using data from a national survey of US newspaper journalists (N = 1318), this study examines attitudes toward news coverage of mass shootings. Following Shoemaker and Reese’s hierarchical model, the analysis also considers how individual characteristics, journalistic practices, and organizational factors influence these attitudes. Participants gen...
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A survey (N = 1318) evaluated US newspaper journalists’ attitudes toward contextual reporting – stories that go beyond the immediacy of the news and contribute to societal well-being. Results indicated that journalists highly value professional roles associated with contextual reporting. Responses revealed new journalistic role functions, including...
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Building off previous literature on journalistic roles, this study showed that local television investigative reporters were more adversarial and placed greater value on audience appeal compared to other journalists. A factor analysis of survey responses (N = 165) revealed five functions describing investigative journalists’ perceived roles: advers...
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Mail survey (N = 112) of lead city government reporters at randomly selected television stations in the 210 local designated market areas replicates a 1997 study. The 2014 reporters had a more pessimistic view of station commitment to and valuing of city government reporting than in 1997 study. Among 2014 respondents, older reporters were more pess...
Article
Investigative reporting is valued by consumers and journalists and is vital to a healthy democracy. However, it is a resource- and time-intensive practice that is often seen as financially inefficient. With resources dwindling at local US television stations, investigative news may be suffering. This article analyzes empirically whether social medi...
Article
The United States Copyright Act allows for fair use of copyrighted material under certain circumstances, but federal courts have been inconsistent in rulings on copyright infringement cases in which documentary filmmakers claim fair use. This can be problematic for documentarians, who often use copyrighted materials. The 2005 “Documentary Filmmaker...

Citations

... Willnat, Weaver, and Wilhoit (2017, 425) found that, while journalists are more likely to think 'providing analysis of complex problems' and discussing national and international policy are important, the public is more likely to prefer direct, less-interpreted information. This finding is in line with Abdenour, McIntyre, and Dahmen (2020), who found that average citizens were significantly less likely than journalists to say that a fundamental role of journalism is to provide analysis of complex problems. ...
... Also, it is unclear how different ways of reporting news in journalism relate to the impact of media and political trust on news avoidance. Previous research shows that the communication style in journalism has an effect on trust in politicians (Otto & Maier, 2016) as well as trust in news (Thier et al., 2021). It might be the case that tabloid journalism, including strong dramatization of the topic, lowers trust in news and the government in times of the pandemic and thereby indirectly increases news avoidance. ...
... Efforts to consolidate local television news stations have captured national attention, recently with the unsuccessful attempt by Sinclair Broadcasting Group to acquire Tribune Media Group (Lee & Tsang, 2018) and ongoing attention to how local TV has become more nationalized and conservative-leaning with these ownership changes (Martin & McCrain, 2018). These attempts and other trends in local media outlet ownership raise questions of if and how changes in station ownership impact the content of local news (Hedding et al., 2019) as well as the scope of that coverage. We found that a subset (7.4%) of the stories analyzed for content in our sample discussed activity that was not actually local. ...
... While public apathy is the primary concern of critics discussing compassion fatigue, journalists' frustrations with the limitations of routine reporting are also nothing new nor resolved, evidenced by the frequency with which Moeller continues to appear in modern scholarship (Dahmen et al. 2019, Irawanto 2018, Wahl-Jorgensen 2019. In both broadcast and print journalism, this emerged in the form of "parachute" and "voice-over journalism," where writers are tasked with reporting with confidence on stories they know little about in places they have never been, becoming "parachutists" who are "trained in crisis, not countries" (Hess cited in Moeller 1994, 26-27). ...
... (quoted by Newman, 2021) It is certainly important for the news media to know what kind of content the audience finds interesting and meaningful (Meijer & Bijleveld, 2016) and newsrooms should focus on providing quality journalism as defined by customers in their sphere of interests. For example, a study of audiences and US broadcast television found that news stations producing the highest-quality investigative journalism also earned the largest audiences (Abdenour & Riffe, 2019). Still, Meijer (2010) suggests that journalism as a professional practice and discourse may have to look for alternative anchoring concepts as substitutes for 'quality journalism'. ...
... Correlations were found between approval of these genres and approval of activist values such as setting the political agenda and pointing to possible solutions. Abdenour et al. (2018) conducted a similar survey among local TV journalists in the US, showing an even higher affinity for constructive reporting styles. ...
... Consequently, Latin American investigative journalism is biased toward official wrongdoing and political corruption, and rarely reports on economic misconduct or issues that affect the poor (Waisbord 2000). This is different from investigative journalism in the United States, which is characterized by stories originated by a reporter's own initiative (Abdenour 2017;Ullmann and Honeyman 1983). ...
... Notably, this journalistic pattern contrasts with those for other sensitive topics, such as suicides, where the media has found ways to limit coverage. 2 In a recent survey, journalists agreed covering mass shootings has become routine and sensational -yet most of them remain strongly supportive of reporting on shootings (Dahmen et al., 2018). In fact, the Omaha shooter mentioned above received five complete segments on the ABC Evening News for a total of 16 min and 10 s of television news attention in front of millions of people. ...
... To date, little empirical research about the role orientations of constructive and solutions journalists exists. For the US, McIntyre et al. (2016) investigated the compatibility of constructive journalism with the current role perception among newspaper journalists: especially younger and women journalists highly valued constructive and solutions journalism. Correlations were found between approval of these genres and approval of activist values such as setting the political agenda and pointing to possible solutions. ...
... Several studies suggest that smaller television markets produce higher quality news (see, for example, Riffe & Abdenour, 2016;Yanich, 2012); others found that market size had little or no effect on television news quality (Belt & Just, 2008;Reinardy & Bacon, 2014). Meanwhile, McManus (1994) found a higher demand for investigative news in larger television markets, and Hamilton (2016) theorized that journalism outlets in large markets are better able to sustain investigative production by spreading costs over more consumers. ...