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Imagined Audiences – How Journalists Perceive and Pursue the Public - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Imagined Audiences: How Journalists Perceive and Pursue the Public

Jacob L. Nelson


The news industry faces profound financial instability and public distrust. Many believe the solution to these ongoing crises is for journalists to improve their relationship with their audiences. This raises important questions: How do journalists conceptualize their audiences in the first place? What is the connection between what journalists think about their audiences and what they do to reach them? Perhaps most important, how aligned are these “imagined” audiences with the real ones? Imagined Audiences draws on ethnographic case studies of three news organizations to show how journalists’ ... More

Keywords: journalism, engagement, news, audience, metrics, Hearken, City Bureau, Chicago Tribune, ethnography

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2021 Print ISBN-13: 9780197542590
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2021 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780197542590.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jacob L. Nelson, author
Assistant Professor, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Arizona State University