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What is a News Narrative?: Reversing Journalism’s Arrow and the Problem of “Factinion”.

Majin, G., 2021. What is a News Narrative?: Reversing Journalism’s Arrow and the Problem of “Factinion”. Journal of Communication and Media Studies, 6 (2), 57 - 70.

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DOI: 10.18848/2470-9247/CGP/v06i02/57-70


This article draws on cognitive science to make an important distinction between knowledge and understanding. Doing so shines a light on the nature of the news narrative, and brings a fresh perspective to the often blurred distinction between fact and opinion. It is argued that the arrow of journalism should point in one direction; from the reporting of factual news, to interpretation and the construction of news narratives. However this direction is increasingly reversed, leading journalists to privilege stories which support their pre-existing narratives. The result is that contemporary journalism often produces “factinion”, a confusing mixture of fact and opinion. The article develops the idea that Narrative-Led Journalism is “fake journalism”; a genre of realist-factual entertainment, or ‘info-therapy’. In an increasingly partisan and tribal public sphere, fake journalism provides comforting reinforcement of existing world views, to the detriment of journalism which promotes independent judgement, and the search for truth. Narrative-Led Journalism therefore has implications for democracy; it leaves us vulnerable to the tyranny of explanation

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:News Narrative, Narrative Led Journalism, Arrow of Journalism, Fact, Opinion, Belief, Fake News, Socio-drama, Tribalism, Factinion, Confirmation Bias
Group:Faculty of Media & Communication
ID Code:35525
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:19 May 2021 10:39
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:27


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