Opportunities of a Hypertext for the Genre of Investigative Reporting (a Case Study of the Propublica Online Publication)

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Tatiana A. Biryukova

Editor of the Special Projects Department of the RZD TV channel, Moscow, Russia

e-mail: dominicata@mail.ru

Section: New Media

This paper presents the result of a study into the use of hypertexts in the genre of investigative reporting. As empirical objects, the author resorted to articles from Propublica, an American publication which is a vivid example of quality online journalism in the USA. Based on a sample of 30 articles, the author identified and analyzed the main hypertext features employed by Propublica journalists. The study shows that they use the so-called axial type of hypertext: the structure of the article has nothing in common with the labyrinth principle but involves a core linear text. What contributes to hypertextuality is additional links, which can be divided into three groups: external, intratextual and intertextual ones. Hyperlinks provide journalists with some opportunities that are missing in traditional print media. They make it possible to supply an article with a lot of additional information without overloading the main text. In addition, hyperlinks make investigative reporting more transparent and turn the reader from a passive information consumer into the journalist’s co-author.

Keywords: hypertext, online journalism, new media, Propublica, hyperlinks
DOI: 10.30547/vestnik.journ.3.2020.7999


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