«Digital Calligraphy» of a Modern Journalist: Governance of Digital Content

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Valentina D. Mansurova

Doctor of Philosophy, Professor at the Chair of Theory and Practice of Journalism, Altai State University, Barnaul, Russia

e-mail: mvd1951@mail.ru

Section: Theory of Journalism and Media

The digital upgrade of journalistic techniques drastically changes the requirements to the final product of journalistic activity — a text. It loses its status of a primary information carrier and becomes a tool for creation of meanings, a mechanism of nonlinear regulation of communication processes. The development and propagation of texts in the global network space — “networkization” (N. Bolz) — require an understanding of a new calligraphy described as “the art of giving form to signs in an expressive, harmonious and skillful manner” (C. Mediavilla). The “digital letter” changes the traditional form of text and sign compositions. It is essential to keep the mode of network communication of a text: involvement, continuity, simultaneity, absence of barriers, interactivity. SEO optimization of texts unifies their structure bringing it up to the standards of media content. Multiple self-copying, information replications and content virality produce an immediate network effect with commercial benefits. The digital upgrade of texts creates new genres for mobile applications: glance journalism, listicle, business quote. Digital media are successfully mastering narrative-based genres: long reads and storytelling. In this paper, a consecutive analysis of the “networkization” of texts in the Izvestia (www.iz.vestia.ru) and Vedomosti (www.vedomosti.ru) newspapers and in other popular Russian online media is presented. The analysis results demonstrate new opportunities of interactive communication with the audience. An analysis of storytelling activity of Russian online media indicates a return to traditional textocentrism. A synthesis of all kinds of information within a text as “the art of giving form to signs” creates new representative and expressive opportunities for an effective interaction with the audience. A structural-functional analysis of texts in the leading online media shows that there is a prerequisite for the emergence of a new virtual form — a journalistic network text aimed at generating socially important meanings.

Keywords: digital upgrade of journalism, media text, “networkization”, viral content, glance journalism, listicle, narrative

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