Exploring the link between media concentration and news content diversity using automated text analysis

Jonathan Hendrickx*, Annelien Van Remoortere

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this article, we explore the relationship between increased media market concentration and its effects on the diversity of news content. We assemble a dataset of 1,419,479 print and online ‘hard news’ articles published between 2018 and 2021 by the four largest newspapers in Flanders (Belgium). These include two popular and two quality titles owned by two rival media companies, which only emerged in recent years after a string of mergers and takeovers which fundamentally changed ownership diversity in the small yet increasingly concentrated Flemish media market. In our analysis, we compare articles for their similarity between titles belonging to the same company using automated text comparisons. We find that content is growing increasingly similar and expand the existing body of research on the link between media concentration and news (content) diversity in Flanders as well as beyond.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-371
JournalJournalism
Volume25
Issue number2
Early online date9 Nov 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2024

Keywords

  • content analysis
  • content diversity
  • Media concentration
  • media diversity
  • news diversity

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