International news flows theory revisited through a space-time interaction model

Abstract : This paper proposes a quantitative model of the circulation of foreign news based on a gravity-like model of spatial interaction disaggregated by time, media and countries of interest. The analysis of international RSS news stories published by 31 daily newspapers in 2015 demonstrates, first, that many of the laws of circulation of international news predicted half a century ago by Galtung and Ruge and by Östgaard are still valid. The salience of countries in media remains strongly determined by size effects (area, population), with prominent coverage of rich countries (GDP/capita) with elite status (permanent members of UNSC, the Holy See). The effect of geographical distance and a common language remains a major factor of media coverage in newsrooms. Contradicting the flat world hypothesis, global journalism remains an exception, and provincialism is the rule. The disaggregation of the model by media demonstrates that newspapers are not following exactly the same rules and are more or less sensitive to distance, a common language or elite status. The disaggregation of the model by week suggests that the rules governing foreign news can also be temporarily modified by exceptional events that eliminate the usual effects of salience and relatedness, producing short periods of "global consensus" that can benefit small, poor and remote countries. This paper concludes by recommending the use of a sample of carefully chosen diversified media rather than a large aggregation of data for global studies.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 10, 2018 - 5:08:30 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, July 18, 2019 - 1:31:41 AM
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  • HAL Id : hal-01892635, version 1
  • ARXIV : 1810.04912

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Claude Grasland. International news flows theory revisited through a space-time interaction model. 2018. ⟨hal-01892635⟩

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