"The century of journalism" – New DFG project by PD Dr. Thomas Birkner
(08.10.2019) Journalism is currently experiencing numerous transformations. The new DFG Project "The century of journalism – the history of journalism in Germany from WW I to Digitalization" explores general developments in media and society in order to gain a deeper understanding of journalisms current challenges.
Worldwide, despots and populists fight the media, while business model of journalism, well-established over the last century, is increasingly under pressure. The digitization of journalism changes the trades’s working conditions and creates new competition. Media’s credibility is at stake and journalists are confronted with words such as "Lügenpresse" and "Fake News".
From October 2019, Thomas Birkner and his associate Annika Keute explore the transformation processes in the "century of journalism" with the following questions: How and under which conditions did journalism develop as society’s watchdog and how did these conditions change over time? Which organizational structures have emerged and how flexible are these towards political and societal changes? How do technologies and changes in usage behavior influence the media?
To answer these and further questions, the researchers will i.a. conduct interviews with journalists, and, with the help of semi-automated content analysis, explore the news structure over the course of time. The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) funds the project with 210.000 euros over the course of 3 years.