Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Modern Approaches in Humanities and Social sciences
Data-Driven Journalism in the Context of the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Analysis of the Reporting of Numerical Data in Online Media
Dr. Blerina Gjerazi, Kleva Dedej
The COVID-19 pandemic has propelled data-driven journalism into a prominent role in disseminating information, emerging as a primary strategy for conveying updates and statistics to the public. This study provides a thorough analysis of how Albanian online media outlets have navigated data reporting, with a specific focus on their handling of COVID-19 data. The pandemic has not only underscored the critical importance of data journalism but has also revealed deficiencies in its execution within the Albanian media landscape. These shortcomings have the potential to leave the general audience perplexed, particularly those who may not possess an in-depth understanding of data-related nuances. The study meticulously examined 144 news stories concerning daily COVID-19 data disseminated by four prominent Albanian online media platforms. The research sheds light on the challenges faced by data journalism within the Albanian media landscape during the COVID-19 pandemic, placing particular emphasis on the extensive use of numerical data. It reveals a tendency toward sensationalism, prioritizing swift dissemination over crucial data processing and analysis. This compromise in delivering accurate information, especially regarding COVID-19 statistics, impacts the overall quality of news coverage. These challenges have significant implications for the audience, raising important considerations. In essence, this research contributes to a deeper understanding of deficiencies in data journalism practices, advocating for a more nuanced approach to the reporting of numerical data, particularly during crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. The insights gained extend beyond the immediate context, providing valuable considerations for media practitioners, researchers, and the general public alike.
keywords: critical attitude, information dissemination, news stories, media organizations, media reality