Current Aspects Of Formation Of Approaches To The Professionalization Of Journalistic Activities

Abstract

This study aims to define the criteria for professional journalistic activity in the context of the development of modern technologies, the influence of the Internet and the blogosphere. The article uses a comparative-typological method aimed at identifying approaches to the definition of professional activity by the professional and academic communities, as well as the analysis of the parameters of professional standards included in the list of relevant professional activities of graduates of the undergraduate program “Journalism”. The authors used the method of content analysis for the processing of publications in the media, illustrating the professional interaction of the blogosphere and journalism. In order to study the relationship between representatives of the blogosphere and traditional media, we surveyed the students at the Institute of Philology and Journalism at UNN, as well as utilized research results conducted by sociological companies. The study allowed us to draw the following conclusions: the use of information and communication technologies in journalism is becoming an important aspect in the system of requirements of professional and educational standards. However, mastering technologies not only does not exclude a socio-ethical component in the system of training of future journalists and specialists in the field of media communications, but puts it in the foreground in the context of forming criteria for the professionalization of journalistic activities

Keywords: Blogospherejournalistic educationprofessional standardsethics

Introduction

The problem of developing approaches to professional journalistic activity is one of the most debatable in the modern journalistic and academic community. The formation of a new information environment leads to such a phenomenon as the dilution of the criteria of professional journalism, including the cases when we talk about the social mission of the press or discuss the challenges of adhering to the principles of professional ethics. Many practicing journalists and journalism and modern media communications scholars suggest reconsidering approaches to the perception of the principles of professional ethics and change the methods of its teaching in the framework of the system of journalistic education.

Problem Statement

The transition to the preparation of future journalists in accordance with the requirements of professional standards can contribute to a clearer definition of the criteria for the professionalization of journalistic activities. This process was preceded by a discussion among journalists and media managers, who for the most part denied the need for professional standards governing the activity of media correspondents, media editors, and specialists in information resources and the promotion and distribution of media products (Makarova, 2016, pp. 24-25). At the same time, representatives of the academic community took a positive view of the need to regulate the professional activities of a journalist within the criteria of professional standards. Here, for example, we should note the opinion of Tulupov (2017, pp. 53–54).

Research Questions

Analysis of the parameters of professional standards included in the list of relevant professional activities of graduates who have mastered the undergraduate program “Journalism” shows that in the process of training future journalists, sufficient attention should be paid to modern technologies. For example, the implementation of the job function “Editing materials” within the framework of the professional standard “Media Editor” (Order of Ministry of labor and social protection Russian Federation, 2014) and the generalized job functions “Technical processing and placement of information resources on the website” and “Creating and editing information resources” (“Information Resources Specialist”) assumes the graduate has a sufficiently high qualification in the field of information technology (Order of the Ministry of labour of Russia, 2014). This aspect is also reflected in the updated version of the Federal State Educational Standard (FSES-3 ++), which includes the OPK-6 competence: “student it is able to use modern technical means and information and communication technologies in professional activities” (Federal State Educational Standard of Higher Education – Bachelor degree in the field 42.03.02 – Journalism, 2018).

The active use of technology in the professional activities of a journalist raises the question of the specifics of the journalist profession itself. In this context, we would like to quote the opition of the authors of the study titled "Journalists' View of the Profession and Professional Community," conducted by the ZIRCON research group and commissioned by the Media Research and Journalism Standards Foundation “Mediastart” in 2016. The study covered the functioning of the media system in modern Russia, including the professional identity of representatives of the journalistic community and future journalists (students of journalism). The authors of the study discovered that the journalistic profession is apparently going through the transition phase, found series of "anomalies" related to the controversy regarding understanding of the profession, required professional education, adherence to the standards of professional ethics (Journalists' perception of their profession and professional community. General analytical report on the results of research works, 2017).

Purpose of the Study

The article analyzes the criteria for professional journalistic activities in the context of the development of modern technologies, the impact of the blogosphere, social networks, instant messengers, and alternative sources of information.

Research Methods

The authors use a comparative-typological method aimed at identifying approaches to the definition of professional activity by the professional and academic communities, as well as the analysis of the parameters of professional standards included in the list of relevant professional activities of graduates of the undergraduate program “Journalism.“ The processing of publications in the media was conducted using the method of content analysis. In order to study the relationship between representatives of the blogosphere and traditional media, we surveyed the students of the Institute of Philology and Journalism at UNN, as well as utilized research results produced by sociological companies/

Findings

In 2018, the ZIRCON research group conducted a study on the perception of a journalist by the mass consciousness of Russians, one of the parameters of which was to study the level of trust in media information and other sources, including Internet sites and social networks. The authors of the study note that according to the data obtained the Internet, as a source of socio-political information, is ahead, albeit only slightly, (18% and 16% respectively) of print media. The level of trust in alternative sources of information is growing, and this growth among young people is quite significant. For example, reports from social networks are trusted by 15% of respondents (26% are representatives of the younger audience), YouTube videos are trusted by 12%, 31% of which are younger audiences, Telegram channels are trusted by 4%, 12% of which are respectively youth (The image of journalists in the mass consciousness of Russians. Analytical report on the results of a mass survey of the Russian population, 2018).

This trend, once again testifies to the ongoing process of transformation of the media system, and raises the logical research question: can anyone who uploads certain content to the Internet be considered a journalist? Many media researchers and practitioners no longer distinguish between the Internet and traditional media. Brand Analytics, which monitors and analyzes social media since 2018 and runs the “Top 100 Viral Media Resources” ranking, based on calculating the citation index in social media over a month, does not separate traditional media sites, Internet-only websited, and LiveJournal.com blogs (Brand Analytics presents Top-Platform and Top-100 Viral Media Resources Ranking, 2019). The specifics of the relationship between the blogosphere and social networks with traditional media, including in the context of the transformation of the profession of a journalist, for example, are discussed in the articles by Simakova (2012) “Modern journalism and social networks” (pp. 16-18), Tulupov (2015) "Social Networks and Journalism" (pp.11-16), Pavlushkina (2014) "Social networks in the work of a journalist: PRO ET CONTRA" (p. 1337).

The authors of this study believe that, in addition to the mastery of technology, the profession of a journalist implies an awareness of the principles of social responsibility, mission in society, and adherence to the norms of professional ethics. Perhaps it is the strengthening of the ethical aspect in the journalist training system that will allow graduates to understand the uniqueness of their profession. By the way, this component is not at all rejected by professional standards, on the contrary, the Media Correspondent standard and the Media Editor standards (Order of Ministry of labor and social protection Russian Federation, 2014) include professional journalistic ethics as a necessary knowledge.

In the period from February 6 to 20, 2019, the authors conducted a survey of students enrolled in the "Journalism" program (bachelor and master). Students (104 people, 2-4 years undegraduate students, 1st year graduate studnets) answered questions related to the problem of relations between representatives of the blogosphere and traditional media, as well as violations in the field of professional ethics in the modern Russian information space.

The first part of the survey involved students' answers to the following question: “Give your own assessment of the video bloggers. Whose activity seems to you quite professional and exemplary?" Students were given a list of top-10 video bloggers in accordance with the RIAB rating (Russian Research Agency of Bloggers), which included the following names: V. Petukhov, Y. Dud, A. Sardarov, O. Grigoriev, S. Davydov, E. Trofimova, M. Rozhkova, N. Sobolev, D. Kuplinov, Yu. Yaniv, as well as an option to give another reply (Rating of bloggers/Russian research agency of bloggers, 2019).

The greatest number of answers and assessments (from positive, “works professionally,” “almost like a professional journalist,” to very negative ones, such as “behavior on the verge of what is permitted,” “interrupts the inteviewee,” “poorly prepared for an interview”) was given about Dud (2019): 95% answered that they know this blogger, 80% of them in general, albeit with reservations, have a positive attitude to his activities. Perhaps this is due to the discussion in the media space at this particular time period of an ambiguous interview that journalist and general director of the Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency D. Kiselev gave to the blogger on February 5, 2019. The interview is posted on “vDud” YouTube channel: “Kiselev - on his brother in the USA, nephew in a war, pension” (Dud, 2019). As of February 24, 2019, this video gained 7.9 million views, 146 thousand "likes", 346 thousand "dislikes" (the last figure, which shows a negative attitude to the video, is very rare for the Dud’s channel).

In a sense, this interview is a significant event in the modern Russian media space, because this was a professional "duel" between one of the well-known and venerable journalists, the head of a large state media holding and a blogger, whose videos gain from 12 to 14 million views, and whose example is cited by supporters of the idea that in the context of the development of modern technologies and the blogosphere, professional journalism becomes unnecessary. Apparently, this fact, in particular, drew the attention of the mass and professional audience to the event, causing a sharp controversy in the media: M. Andreev “[Kiselev] Smashed Dud to pieces. Kiselev came to "vDud", and users (sadly) awarded him a victory over the blogger" (Andreeva, 2019), "Dud's followers were disappointed in him because of the interview with Kiselev" (Surepin, 2019). Novaya Gazeta published an article by Petrovskaya (2019) “Tom and Jerry-2. When Dmitry Kiselev went to visit Yuri Dud” (p. 24), where a well-known media critic analyzed the interview in detail and gave her own assessments of the participants.

Echoes of this video and the controversy around it are present in the students' answers: three respondents directly pointed out the fact of an interview with D. Kiselev, and one student, wanting to back up his negative assessment of the activities of Y. Dud, quoted the phrase said by the host of the program “News of the Week”, - "[Dud is] falling lower and lower." It should be noted that the rest of the bloggers present in the list scored far behind Y. Dud in terms of popularity and degree of interest of this part of the audience in their activities: N. Sobolev was mentioned by 5% of respondents, E. Trofimov and M. Rozhkov by 3%, A. Sardarov by 2%. As “Other” option, 3% of respondents indicated E. Bazhenov, a video blogger BadComedian, giving a generally positive assessment of his work calling it original and noteworthy.

The second part of the survey included a list of questions, to which students were asked to give detailed answers. The main task of the authors of the study was to identify the attitude of future journalists to the problem of the relationship between journalism and the blogosphere, particularly, to study their opinion regarding the feasibility of adherence to the standards of journalistic ethics. Students were asked to answer the following questions: “Do you consider following the professional ethical requirements of the necessary component of the journalist profession?; Do you consider adherence to the professional ethical requirements a necessary part of a blogger's activity?; In your opinion, are the blogosphere and journalism competitors or partners?; What do you see as violations of professional ethics in the activities of modern journalists and bloggers?; Who do you think is more likely to violate ethical norms? Journalists or bloggers (give examples if possible) and why? Do you consider it necessary to study professional ethics in Journalism degree programs?

The results show that the future journalists in general see the problem of violation of deontological norms in the modern Russian mass media, quite reasonably assess their reasons, which, however, does not mean that this trend is approved by the respondents. Respondents unequivocally noted the need for professional ethics to be observed by journalists (95%), while bloggers in this context received a more relaxed opinion: 82% gave an unequivocally positive answer to this question, 3% abstained from evaluation, 15% responded that bloggers shouldn't be required to comply with professional ethical standards, because a blog is “a hobby,” “they were not educated,” “they do not report to the editors.” Analysing the relationship between the blogosphere and journalism, the students did not express a unified position: 62% considered the blogosphere and journalism partners, noting that transition from one sphere to another and creative interaction are possible, 8% could not formulate their position, 30% decided that these relations are more of a competitive nature, primarily for the attention of the audience. Approximately the same results were shown in answers to questions about violations of the norms of professional ethics by journalists and bloggers: the majority of respondents, 70%, accused the latter of disregard of standards of both professional ethics and universal morality. In some cases, respondents noted that both sides violate the norms. At the same time, the responsibility of journalists is more important: for a journalist, following a code of ethics is a requirement of the profession. Also, the students themselves support the idea of the need to have both a professional standard and a system for training of future journalists, and necessity to study both requirements related to ethical norms and disciplines related to their profession. However, the absence of detailed answers to this question indicates that the respondents did not have a clear idea of this need.

Conclusion

The development of information technology to a certain extent dilutes the criteria for the professionalization of journalistic activities. At the same time, at the moment, students studying in the "Journalism" degree programs, see the difference between professional journalism, traditional media and, for example, the blogosphere. The tendency to expand the use of information and communication technologies in journalism is reflected in the system of requirements of professional and educational standards. However, the mastery of technology not only does not deny the socio-ethical component in the system of training journalists (this trend is understood by the students too), but, on the contrary, brings it to the forefront in the context of forming the criteria for the professionalization of journalistic activity.

References

  1. Andreeva, M. (2019, 06 February). “Razbil Dudya v puh i prah. Kiselev prishel na "vDud '", i yuzery (s grust'yu) prisudili emu pobedu nad blogerom“ [He] smashed Dud in pieces. Kiselev came to "vDud", and users (sadly) awarded him a victory over the blogger]. Medialeaks. Retrieved from https://medialeaks.ru/0602amv-dud-kiselev/.
  2. Brand Analytics predstavlyaet rejting Top-platform i Top-100 viral'nyh mediaresursov, YANVAR' 2019 goda. «Vam Telegram» [Brand Analytics presents Top-Platform and Top-100 Viral Media Resources Ranking (2019). "You have a Telegram".] Retrieved from https://br-analytics.ru/blog/top-platform-i-top-100-mediaresursov-yanvar2019/.
  3. Dud, Y. (2019, February 24). Kiselev – brat v SSHA, plemyannik na vojne, pensiya [Kiselev – on brother in the USA, nephew at the war, pension] [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7JrIAY5G7jE&t= 1s.
  4. Federal'nyj gosudarstvennyj obrazovatel'nyj standart vysshego professional'nogo obrazovaniya - bakalavriat po special'nosti 42.03.02 – zhurnalistika [Federal State Educational Standard of Higher Education – Bachelor degree in the field 42.03.02 – Journalism] (2018). Retrieved from http://fgosvo.ru/uploadfiles/fgosvob/420302_Gurnal.pdf
  5. Makarova, L. S. (2016). Sravnitel'nyj analiz federal'nyh gosudarstvennyh obrazovatel'nyh standartov (FGOS-3 i FGOS-3+) po napravleniyu «ZHurnalistika»: k probleme povysheniya kachestva professional'nogo obrazovaniya [Comparative analysis of federal state educational standards (FSES-3 and FSES-3 +) in the field of "Journalism": to the problem of improving the quality of professional education]. Znak: problemnoe pole mediaobrazovaniya, 5(22), 24-29.
  6. Obraz zhurnalistov v massovom soznanii rossiyan. Analiticheskij otchet po rezul'tatam massovogo oprosa naseleniya Rossii [The image of journalists in the mass consciousness of Russians. Analytical report on the results of a mass survey of the Russian population] (2018). Retrieved from http://www.zircon.ru/upload/iblock/b0d/Obraz_zhurnalistov-2018_otchet.pdf.
  7. Pavlushkina, N. A. (2014). Social'nye seti v rabote zhurnalista: PRO ET CONTRA [Social networks in journalist's work: PRO ET CONTRA]. Sovremennye problemy nauki i obrazovaniya, 6, 13-37.
  8. Petrovskaya, I. (2019, February 7). Tom i Dzheri-2. Kak Dmitrij Kiselev k YUriyu Dudyu v gosti skhodil [Tom and Jerry-2. When Dmitry Kiselev went to visit Yury Dud]. Novaya Gazeta.
  9. Predstavleniya zhurnalistov o professii i professional'nom soobshchestve. Obshchij analiticheskij otchet po rezul'tatam nauchno-issledovatel'skih rabot [Journalists' perception of their profession and professional community. General analytical report on the results of research works] (2017). Retrieved from http://www.zircon.ru/upload/iblock/dd6/zhurnalisty_otchet.pdf.
  10. Prikaz Ministerstva truda Rossii № 538n "Ob utverzhdenii professional'nogo standarta" redaktor sredstv massovoj informacii", c. III, s. 3.1 (2014). [Order of Ministry of labor of Russia № 538n "About the approval of the professional standard" the Editor of mass media"] Retrieved from http://profstandart.ros-mintrud.ru/obshchiy-informatsionnyy-blok/natsionalnyy-reestr-professional-nykh-standartov/reestr-oblastey-i-vidov-professionalnoy-deyatelnosti).
  11. Prikaz Mintruda Rossii № 629n "Ob utverzhdenii professional'nogo standarta "Specialist po informacionnym resursam", (2014). [The order of the Ministry of labor of Russia № 629n "On approval of professional standard "a Specialist in information resources"] Retrieved from http://profstandart.ros-mintrud.ru/obshchiy-informatsionnyy-blok/natsionalnyy-reestr-professional-nykh-standartov/reestr-oblastey-i-vidov-professionalnoy-deyatelnosti.
  12. Rejting blogerov / rossijskoe issledovatel'skoe agentstvo blogerov [Rating of bloggers / Russian research agency of bloggers] (2019). Retrieved from http://riabloggers.ru/bloggers.
  13. Simakova, S. I. (2012). Sovremennaya zhurnalistika i social'nye seti [Modern journalism and social networks]. Znak: problemnoe pole mediaobrazovaniya, 1(9), 16-18.
  14. Surepin, S. (2019, 07 February). Podpischiki Dudya razocharovalis' v nem iz-za interv'yu s Kiselevym [Dud's subscribers became disillusioned with him because of the interview with Kiselyov]. Life. Retrieved from https://life.ru/t/news/1191826/podpischiki_dudia_razocharovalis_v_niom_iz-za_intierviu_s_kisieliovym.
  15. Tulupov, V. V. (2015). Social'nye seti i zhurnalistika [Social networks and journalism]. Vek informacii, 4, 11-16.
  16. Tulupov, V. V. (2017). Professional'nye standarty, roli i kul'tura sovremennogo zhurnalista [Professional standards, roles and culture of a modern journalist]. The Central European Journal Of Social Sciences And Humanities (CEJSH), 11, 49-60. Retrieved from http://cejsh.icm.edu.pl/cejsh/element/bwmeta1.element.desklight-022799f7-55c8-46d0-902e-06a528def3b1.

Copyright information

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

About this article

Publication Date

07 August 2019

eBook ISBN

978-1-80296-065-5

Publisher

Future Academy

Volume

66

Print ISBN (optional)

-

Edition Number

1st Edition

Pages

1-783

Subjects

Communication studies, press, journalism, science, technology, society

Cite this article as:

Novikova, T. E., & Makarova*, L. S. (2019). Current Aspects Of Formation Of Approaches To The Professionalization Of Journalistic Activities. In & Z. Marina Viktorovna (Ed.), Journalistic Text in a New Technological Environment: Achievements and Problems, vol 66. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 490-496). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2019.08.02.57