Problematising the restoration of trust through transparency : Focusing on quoting
Haapanen, L. (2022). Problematising the restoration of trust through transparency : Focusing on quoting. Journalism, 23(4), 875-891. https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884920934236
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Transparency is seen as a panacea for a major problem facing journalism and journalists today, that is, the loss of trust and credibility. However, the scholarly literature has focused primarily on normative considerations, without providing much empirical data that could confirm what are widely assumed to be the positive effects of transparency. In this paper, I argue, first, that editorial texts, in their various manifestations, are the most potent of the various established means of displaying transparency for opening up the production of news item. However, I then draw on my linguistic, process-focused research on quoting and highlight challenges this process creates for the use of editorial texts in the pursuit of transparency. It turns out that conveying the essentials of decision-making that occurs during newswriting requires profound understanding and awareness of the interplay between modalities, co-texts and contexts of language use. Finally, implementing the norm of transparency has allegedly led to the transformation of a well-intentioned goal into an institutional myth, leading journalists – constrained, for example, by the mechanism of impression management – to disclose only socially acceptable practices. Therefore, I conclude by arguing for transdisciplinary research in which scholars research ‘on, for and with’ (Perrin, 2018) other stakeholders in order to bring about a fundamental change in the culture of transparency in journalism. ...
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Additional information about fundingThe author received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
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