Audience participation in online news websites: a comparative analysis

Rosa Franquet, Maria Isabel Villa, Ignacio Bergillos


In a moment of transformation of media as a result of ongoing processes of digitalization and convergence, television broadcasters are increasingly betting on tools that allow the public to assume a more active role in the production of contents. Emergent phenomena such as participatory journalism, user-generated content or the integration of social networking websites are becoming more and more relevant in the online public sphere.

This paper compares the models for online news websites participation developed by RTVE (Spain) and BBC (England). The analysis focuses on the different participative resources, the access protocols, the technical mediations and the restrictions of the content produced by the audience in these two influential broadcasters.

The concept of participation is articulated from the perspective of studies that understand it as new feedback opportunities provided by digital technology. Particular obstacles and requirements are detected in each media. Although television broadcasters seem to offer a large variety of tools that would allow the public to assume a more active role, it is still peripheral and complementary.


Participation; Internet; information; Public Service Broadcasting

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