Audience Feedback in the News Media  book cover
1st Edition

Audience Feedback in the News Media

ISBN 9781138548657
Published February 5, 2018 by Routledge
204 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

SAVE $11.39
was $56.95
USD $45.56

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

As long as there has been news media, there has been audience feedback. This book provides the first definitive history of the evolution of audience feedback, from the early newsbooks of the 16th century to the rough-and-tumble online forums of the modern age. In addition to tracing the historical development of audience feedback, the book considers how news media has changed its approach to accommodating audience participation, and explores how audience feedback can serve the needs of both individuals and collectives in democratic society. Reader writes from a position of authority, having worked as a "letters to the editor" editor and has written numerous research articles and professional essays on the topic over the past 15 years.

Table of Contents

Introduction  1. Audience Comments, the Spice of History  2. "Packets of Letters": Audience Comments before Freedom of the Press  3. "A Sure Sign of Liberty, and a Cause of It": Audience Feedback and the Emergence of the Free Press  4. Commodification of Comments: Professional Bias and Gatekeeping of Letters to the Editor  5. Professional Journalism's Transformation of  "A Quaint Tradition"  6. The Concerning "Crackpots": The Media's Love-Hate Relationship with Feedback  7. "In my opinion ...": Commenting as Individual Agency  8. "We, the people ...": Commenting as Collective Action  9. Conclusion: Gatekeeping in an Age without Fences

View More



Bill Reader is Associate Professor in the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, USA


"Bill Reader traces a remarkable history of reader comment and feedback, bringing the phenomenon full circle from anonymity and partisanship through balance and restraint to today’s faceless, nameless and full-throated digital free-for-all." -- Frederick Blevens, Florida International University, USA

"This book provides a revealing look at the public’s conversation shared via the press. It lets readers know that even though technology has changed, today’s ability for the individual to reach a mass audience has much more in common with the press before the 20th century than we might imagine." -- David Copeland, Elon University, USA