Archive

Tag Archives: spain

The extensive use of social media for protest purposes was a distinctive feature of the recent protest events in Spain, Greece, and the United States. Like the Occupy Wall Street protesters in the United States, the indignant activists of Spain and Greece protested against unjust, unequal, and corrupt political and economic institutions marked by the arrogance of those in power. Social media can potentially change or contribute to the political communication, mobilization, and organization of social movements. To what extent did these three movements use social media in such ways? To answer this question a comparative content analysis of tweets sent during the heydays of each of the campaigns is conducted. The results indicate that, although Twitter was used significantly for political discussion and to communicate protest information, calls for participation were not predominant. Only a very small minority of tweets referred to protest organization and coordination issues. Furthermore, comparing the actual content of the Twitter information exchanges reveals similarities as well as differences among the three movements, which can be explained by the different national contexts.

There is no question that public awareness of—that is, disgust with—corruption has grown. In the last year, quarterly polls conducted by the Center for Sociological Investigations saw Spaniards rank it as the country’s fourth gravest problem, surpassed only by unemployment and other economic issues. Yet, the Bárcenas revelations brought only an estimated 1,000 people to an impromptu demonstration held in front of Popular Party headquarters in Madrid. “The idea that politicians are getting envelopes stuffed with cash during these moments of crisis has certainly generated a sense of indignation,” says Villoria. “But there’s also a sense of what can you do besides answer a poll?” While those polls show overwhelming support for toughening sanctions against corruption, little government action has yet been taken. In the wake of the latest scandals, the Popular Party has promised to conduct a thorough internal investigation and prime minister Rajoy said that “his hand would not tremble” to punish anyone found guilty of misconduct. It has also promised greater accountability and oversight in the form of a Transparency Law, proposed last March but still not yet approved, that would require governments at all levels to make their accounts available to the public. But already there are caveats. On Friday, it was announced, that the royal family would be exempt from the law. And thanks to opposition from both the PP and the PSOE so too, most likely, will political parties. Over 75,000 citizens have signed an online petition asking that the parties be included in the legislation. But for that to happen, something would have to change.

In our findings the business models of the cases fall into two main categories: those which have storytelling-orientated business models and those which rely on a more service-orientated model.

The sites whose business model is based around storytelling are still prevalent in our findings. These sites focus on making money from producing original content, news and stories, for audiences. The difference to the mass media model is that in the online world the target audience is smaller. Online journalism relies heavily on niche audiences built around targeted themes such as hobbies, neighborhoods or psychographic tendencies. In this niche journalism there is a tight triangulation between journalistic content and advertised products.

The other group, service-oriented business models, seems to be growing. This group consists of sites that don’t try to monetize the journalistic content as such. For example citizen journalism sites are more like platforms that curate and moderate citizen-oriented content, or news aggregators compile stories form other outlets. Some startups have specialized in selling technology, information, training or diversifying to redefine what it means to do news.

New research: The SuBMoJour study maps sustainable journalistic startups in nine countries. It includes an online database detailing the business models of these entrepreneurial sites.

In our findings the business models of the cases fall into two main categories: those which have storytelling-orientated business models and those which rely on a more service-orientated model.

The sites whose business model is based around storytelling are still prevalent in our findings. These sites focus on making money from producing original content, news and stories, for audiences. The difference to the mass media model is that in the online world the target audience is smaller. Online journalism relies heavily on niche audiences built around targeted themes such as hobbies, neighborhoods or psychographic tendencies. In this niche journalism there is a tight triangulation between journalistic content and advertised products.

The other group, service-oriented business models, seems to be growing. This group consists of sites that don’t try to monetize the journalistic content as such. For example citizen journalism sites are more like platforms that curate and moderate citizen-oriented content, or news aggregators compile stories form other outlets. Some startups have specialized in selling technology, information, training or diversifying to redefine what it means to do news.

New research: The SuBMoJour study maps sustainable journalistic startups in nine countries. It includes an online database detailing the business models of these entrepreneurial sites.

Austerity measures and corresponding cuts in public expenditure have brought to the fore the issue of press freedom in Spain. The Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) and other left wing parties have alleged that changes made by the conservative Partido Popular (PP) have reintroduced overt political patronage in public appointments at Corporación RTVE, the body that manages public service broadcasting.