Date of this Version
In May 2001 the Australian Broadcasting Authority released the authors' report titled Sources of News and Current Affairs (ABA, 2001). The monograph consisted of reports from the Stage I study of journalists' views (Pearson & Brand, 2001) and the Stage 2 study of audiences' views (Brand, Archhold & Rane, 2001). These were independent publications focusing on the individual results from each stage of the larger study. Little comparison was made between the journalists' and audiences' views in the two reports. This paper provides a comparison and contrast of the views of news and current affairs producers and their audiences. The comparative analysis covers a range of topics including characteristics and attitudes; news and current affairs media credibility; news quality (particularly issues of sensationalism, inrusiveness, bias, and inaccuracy); influences upon news and current affairs; adequacy of local coverage; and attitudes to contemporary social issues. The authors found that journalists and their audiences are different, demographically; they are different in their views on the credibility of the news product; they are different in their perceptions of the quality of news; they are different in their assessment of sources of influence on the news product; they are different in their views of the adequacy of local coverage; and they are different in their attitudes to contemporary issues.
This document has been peer reviewed.