Australian TV News

New Forms, Functions, and Futures

Stephen Harrington

Stephen Harrington

Distributed for Intellect Ltd

216 pages | 10 halftones | 7 x 9 | © 2013
Cloth $64.50 ISBN: 9781841507170 Published February 2014
Australian TV News explores the important role of entertainment in Australian television news over the past decade. Through the use of textual analysis, industry interviews, and audience research, it argues that “infotainment” and satire are increasingly becoming significant methods of informing audiences about serious news issues. The work examines the changing relationships between television news, politics, and everyday people, finding that these often humorous programs are used by audiences as sources of political information and fact, and this book challenges traditional assumptions about what form TV news should take and what functions it ought to serve.

Communication Booknotes Quarterly
“Harrington...melds content analysis, interviews with industry figures, and audience research to seek out a full picture of what is being aired on satirical and other “infotainment” programs.”
Contents

Foreword

Introduction

Forms and functions

Research methods

Notes

 

1. The new news

Tabloidisation and the ‘narrative of decline’

The power of the popular

Another way

‘Fake’ news

Countering FOX

Partisan?

Fifth estate

Breaking the rules

Notes

 

2. Waking up with friends

What is Sunrise?

Breakfast time

‘Real people have nicknames’: The hosts

‘The family’

(Extra)ordinary news

Notes

 

3. Sunrise: Infotainment and the ‘television sphere’

Genre

‘Dumbing down’?

Depth of news

The television sphere

Notes

 

4. The democracy of conversation

The Panel: A short history

Fun news

Authenticity

Discursivity

Democracy

Notes

 

5. Weapons of war

Waging war on everything

Pushing the limits

‘It’s like Jackass…

Political satire

‘It’s about culture…’

Hitting the limits

Notes

 

6. What have we learned from The Chaser this week?

Media satire

Critical intertextuality

Dissecting the tabloid

Chasing reporters

Media sceptics

Making sense of the news

Notes

 

7. Journalism in crisis?

Cultural chaos

A holistic perspective

Winning the arms race

For fun, not money

Notes

 

Conclusion

Journalism education after ‘journalism’

New methods

 

Appendix: Research participant information

 

References

 

Acknowledgements

 

Index

For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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