Time and meaning-making in the "hybrid" Media: Evidence from the 2016 U.S. Election

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Scholars have shown that time shapes journalism practices and news narratives. Yet the dynamics of time have received insufficient scholarly attention. In this study, I focus on how temporal plasticity-the dynamic employment of time-affects the construction of meaning in news media and social media. I draw empirical evidence from a cross-media computational text analysis of TV news and Twitter discourse in the 2016 American election. The study uncovers the dynamic utilization of time and its impact on the democratic meaning of the 2016 election (or the lack thereof) before, during, and after the election in "old" and "new"media. I find that a chronological temporal discourse on Twitter facilitates democratic meaning after the election, while a fragmented temporal discourse on the news media undermines the democratic meaning of the election. The results are discussed in light of the democratic role of "old" and "new" media.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-218
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Communication
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

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  • "Hybrid" Media
  • Computational Text nalysis
  • Democratic Collective Identity
  • Temporal Plasticity
  • The U.S. 2016 Presidential Election


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