To Pass or Not to Pass: How Corporate Characteristics Affect Corporate Visibility and Tone in Company News Coverage

Jeroen G.F. Jonkman*, Damian Trilling, Piet Verhoeven, Rens Vliegenthart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To pass or not to pass through the news gates? That is a key question with respect to the relationship between large commercial firms and the journalistic outlets that pub­lish news regarding them. Whereas previous research has considered how corporate communication affects media content, the focus of this study is on corporate characteristics (e.g. company size, age, location and ownership structure). Building on the gatekeeping approach, the study investigates the extent to which these characteristics affect corporate visibility in the news and tone of coverage. The characteristics of 100 large corporations in the Netherlands were combined with visibility and tone in Dutch online and print news throughout 2014 (N = 29,516). The results indicate that having more employees, being owned by the government and focusing on consumers add substantially to the explanation of corporate visibility. Furthermore, our results indicate that government-owned companies tend to be portrayed more negatively than listed firms and family businesses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalJournalism Studies
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • automated content analysis
  • company characteristics
  • company news
  • Gatekeeping
  • news
  • tone
  • visibility

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