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Journalistic Twitter branding in the neoliberal labour market

Konferensbidrag (offentliggjort, men ej förlagsutgivet)
Författare Jenny Wiik
Ulrika Hedman
Publicerad i Capitalism, Culture and the Media, 7–8 September 2015, Leeds, UK
Publiceringsår 2015
Publicerad vid Institutionen för journalistik, medier och kommunikation (JMG)
Språk en
Ämnesord journalism, professionalism, neoliberalism, labour, personal branding, social media, twitter
Ämneskategorier Medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap, Medievetenskap


Personal branding is nothing new to journalists, but the explosion of opportunities on social media has emphasized the importance of molding everyone’s own trademark. The boundaries between professional and private roles have obviously become blurred, allowing journalists to have a more authentic voice in public than before. Furthermore, the radical development of the social media environment is paralleled by thorough changes of the journalistic labor market. Neoliberal policies in many countries as well as trembling media business models has forced the industry further into relying on the use of temporary workers and network based recruiting. The responsibility for finding career possibilities as well as maintaining a professional community is increasingly moving from the newsroom and the industrial actors to the loose crowd of individual media workers. In this networked labor market social media presence becomes crucial, but how do journalists make use of this? How do they choose to present themselves? This paper addresses this question based on the empirical study of 2,543 Swedish journalists’ Twitter accounts. The material was collected in May 2014, and provides a broad mapping of common features of journalistic branding in social media. The personal presentations in the Twitter account information will be analyzed within the framework of professional theory and current labor market research. The paper aims to contribute to the discussion on shifting boundaries of the journalistic role and the role of social media in this, as well as to the consequences of an increasingly atomized labor market for journalists.

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