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Whose Agenda? Analysing the Role of Legacy Media in the Digital Age

Whose Agenda? Analysing the Role of Legacy Media in the Digital Age

Dr. Anthea Henderson & Dr. Corinne Barnes
Faculty of Humanities and Education

The purpose of this inquiry, wasto analyse the framing of news stories publishedin the online versions of two Jamaican national newspapers -The Jamaica Gleaner and The Jamaica Observer. The researchers explore agenda setting processes inthe framing of narratives in published news stories regarding the death of 19 newborn babies who became infected with the serratia and klebsiella bacteria in the country’s two major hospitals.

The method incorporated a context-dependent qualitative inquiry, which is an emerging design in research. This study is a systematic, qualitative content analysis of online news stories, and online audience feedback –micro agenda setters -during the 2015 to 2017 news cycle of the crisis. The analysis included all articles that met the criteria for the Google search terms, serratia, klebsiella, dead babies and dead babies scandal.

The result was the emergence of four themes:

  • Public health crisis,
  • Resource challenges,
  • Taking responsibilityand
  • Assigning blame.

This study has implications for the way opinions are framed in the context of expanding mediatisation, as well as the decreasing influence of traditional media content in shaping public discourse.

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