Entrepreneurial journalism: A response to digital disruption?

  • Tamara Witschge (Invited speaker)

    Activiteit: Academic presentationAcademic


    With the rise of digital technologies, the ways in which journalism is produced, consumed, funded and monetised are rapidly expanding. Moreover, where journalistic content is produced, as well as by whom, is increasingly dispersed. These trends have resulted in the academic, societal and professional understanding of journalism changing in radical ways. In this presentation, I trace and theorise the emerging practices of entrepreneurial journalism, an increasingly popular new conceptualisation of journalism. Where journalism for long has been understood as a practice thoroughly embedded in institutional structures, we now see a significant shift in journalism education, critique and practice where the future of journalism is envisaged to (also) lie in journalistic start-ups, changes in individual journalist’s mind-sets, and journalists’ capability to recognise and grasp business and in particular technological opportunities. The current journalistic landscape is characterised by a precariousness of work (Deuze 2008) where flex working, freelancing, merging personal and professional spaces and time all become increasingly common. Moreover, using digital platforms, entrepreneurial journalism involves an increasing hybridity of roles. These changing work practices affect professional self-understandings, motivations to enter or remain in the profession, as well as the output of journalists. However, the intensity and the nature of the changes, be they positive or negative, still remains to be examined. The discourse on entrepreneurialism is gaining ground in a variety of domains and is rapidly naturalised as way to deal with professions that are in crisis and as a response to the digital disruptions in the field, such as in the journalistic field. Rather than taking for granted that entrepreneurship is the way forward for journalism (and other domains), and that at the root of entrepreneurship lies the discovery and exploitation of opportunity (whether commercial or technological), this project moves away from the individualistic understanding dominant in entrepreneurial research (Gartner 1988). Entrepreneurship is viewed as social practice that is an interwoven mesh of beliefs, aims, emotions, everyday activities and understandings which are embedded in a material and economic technological context (Schatzki 2012). This bottom-up approach, where we work from the practices and understandings that are present in the field, allows us to open up our understanding of journalism to include a wide variety of practices, not only those that are traditionally considered to be journalism. References Deuze, M. 2008. ‘The Changing Context of News Work : Liquid Journalism and Monitorial Citizenship.’ International Journal of Communication 2: 848–865. Gartner, W. B. 1988. ‘"Who Is an Entrepreneur?" Is the Wrong Question.’ American Journal of Small Business 12 (4): 11– 32. Schatzki, T. R. 2012. ‘A Primer on Practices.’ In Practice-Based Education, edited by J. Higgs, R. Barnett, S. Billet, and F. Trede, 13–26. Rotterdam: Sense Publishing.
    EvenementstitelEntrepreneurial journalism: A response to digital disruption?
    LocatieSheffield, United KingdomToon op kaart