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Spatial Journalism in the 21st Century - ICA 2014 Presentation - Schmitz Weiss


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Presentation at ICA conference on Spatial Journalism. For copy of paper, contact me at @digitalamysw

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Spatial Journalism in the 21st Century - ICA 2014 Presentation - Schmitz Weiss

  1. 1. Place-Based Knowledge in the 21st Century: The Creation of Spatial Journalism Amy Schmitz Weiss, Ph.D. Associate Professor School of Journalism and Media Studies San Diego State University May 23, 2014 ICA 2014 Seattle, Washington Theories of Journalism in a Digital Age Panel
  2. 2. Connecting Information and Geographic Space • We are at the intersection today of where information and geographic space can be connected to a concept called place- based knowledge (Fisher 2012)
  3. 3. What does location mean today? • Digital technologies now allow news organizations to bring the news closer to the consumer than ever before – in the palm of their hand via the smartphone or tablet. • Consumers are actively using location-based services for activities ranging from social networking to play (Sutko and de Souza e Silva 2011). • Idea of location now takes on a different connotation for the individual in this digital era.
  4. 4. Place-based Knowledge and Spatial Phenomena • Fisher states that place-based knowledge can entail the use of Geographical Information Systems – “to embed all the knowledge relevant to a place in the myriad layers of information about it. And as we scroll over a place, we can select the pertinent layers and begin to see the relationships among disciplines and the connections among data” (2012, 6). • Arranging knowledge today through spatial phenomena • Spatial phenomena goes deeper than just a street address or block - the larger meaning of the spaces and places around us that hold significant meaning. • Spatiality and place-based knowledge: new construction of meaning in the community – through spatial journalism (Schmitz Weiss, 2014)
  5. 5. What is Spatial Journalism? Spatial journalism (Schmitz Weiss, 2014) is an emergent kind of journalism that incorporates a place, space, and/or location (physical, augmented and virtual) into the process and practice of journalism.
  6. 6. Spatial Journalism: Happening Now and in the Future • Everyblock’s death and resurrection • Augmented reality mobile apps • CBC Hamilton – geo-located news and information • NY Times Leaked report (2014) – proposal of the use of geo- located information as structured data to categorize and organize news content • inewsource prototype- geo-located news and information
  7. 7. Four Research Domains: Spatial Journalism Journalism studies Locative media Network theory Mobile technology Spaces/places have greater meaning by how the journalist maps the community – news construction/production location-based media: virtual & real - reflect current communication phenomena New logic of understanding location within the network (nodes and hubs tied to their spatial organization) Locative media storytelling in different media forms (e.g. art, video, audio, etc.) tied to physical and virtual space
  8. 8. Four Research Domains and Spatial Journalism • Four research domains bridge spatial phenomena and place-based knowledge – to connect to spatial journalism Spatial Journalism
  9. 9. Spatial Journalism Components • Spatial journalism requires the following components: – Information must be communicated across one or several channels (e.g. digital, mobile, etc.) to a group or public; – Information must be connected to its social meaning via a place, space and/or location (physical, augmented, virtual); and – Information must be considered a form of journalism (e.g. text articles, websites, videos, graphics, multimedia pieces, blog posts, broadcasts/programs, print publications, tablet magazines, etc.).
  10. 10. Layers of Inquiry in Spatial Journalism Practice/Form • News editorial decisions • Journalistic routines • Creation, production, curation, and aggregation of news content Content/Production/Creation • News consumption patterns/behaviors • News content analysis - layers of proximity/place • News story layers by attribution, facts, opinion, media type, and data • Mobile device use of location-based information and news
  11. 11. Conclusion: Power of Location and Information • The power of location and information through the intersection of mobile technologies, journalism and location-based services - is having a big impact on communication phenomena today. • Location and geography can have significance in the democratic function of journalism (Mersey, 2009). • Location can communicate forms of freedom as well as inequalities in the coverage of communities
  12. 12. Conclusion: Spatial Journalism • Spatial journalism (Schmitz Weiss, 2014) offers a lens to examine how the journalism profession, the practice and the news consumer’s habits are being shaped in the digital media landscape • Spatial journalism can also identify the holes, gaps, and lack of attention given to communities that are underrepresented or not represented at all. • As digital and mobile technologies become more pervasive, we must be cognizant of the power of such tools (Google Maps, Google Places, etc.) and how we are subject to specific interpretations of the daily space around us. • As scholars, we have an obligation to study this crucial moment in the Digital Era.
  13. 13. THANK YOU! ANY QUESTIONS? @digitalamysw