This master’s thesis investigates the use of first-person journalism in digital niche media outlets in
In recent years, the Internet has expanded the scope of the journalistic “I”, and today journalistic
stories told from a first-person narrator are more or less omnipresent, and are spread through social
media channels. All the while journalists and media organizations are struggling to maintain their
credibility in an era of ‘fake news’ and massive misinformation campaigns. The question is, then,
whether the extensive use of the journalistic “I” is part of the solution or part of the problem.
The thesis focuses on four media outlets, Føljeton, Format, VICE Denmark and Zetland, and examines
the use of the first-person narrator from empirical data gathered through a content analysis of
their recent journalistic productions. The findings of the content analysis are investigated further
through qualitative interviews with representatives from each of the four media outlets, who argue
for and reflect on the extensive use of first-person narration in their own journalistic productions as
well as the productions of the media outlets in general. Furthermore, insights gained from the conducted
interviews are applied in the following discussion of first-person journalism and its possible
consequences for journalistic ideals such as objectivity and credibility.
The thesis concludes that the use of first-person narrator has transcended the genre of narrative
journalism, which it has been associated with historically. The four media outlets investigated all
use the journalistic “I” in more or less every journalistic genre, and some are even experimenting
with integrating the “I” in news stories, a genre from which it has traditionally been proscribed.
Furthermore, the media outlets are willingly breaking the journalistic doctrine of separating fact and
opinion, with some even encouraging journalists to express their own opinions in their journalistic
This practice can be partly explained by the fact that the interviewees (and the media they represent)
view the “I” as a way to establish credibility. As the argument goes, subjectivity is not necessarily
in opposition to the journalistic ideal of objectivity, instead credibility comes from combining
the two in the right way.
|Uddannelser||Journalistik, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat|
|Udgivelsesdato||1 jun. 2018|
|Vejledere||Jannie Møller Hartley|
- Digitale medier
- fortællende journalistik