The transition to digital news has been messy, random and unpredictable. The spread of news via social media platforms has given rise to political propaganda, fake news and a flattening of news to banality and gossip. Media companies, however, continue to shrink newsrooms, ousting experienced journalists in favour of ‘content producers’. Daniels writes of the contribution of investigative journalists to exposing corruption and sees new opportunities emerging, which may well be a model for the future of non-profit, public-funded journalism.
Engaging and dynamic, the book argues for the power of public interest journalism, including investigative journalism, and a diversity of voices and positions to be reflected in the news. It addresses the gains and losses from decolonial and feminist perspectives and advocates for a radical shift in the way power is constituted by the media in the South African postcolony.
A valuable introduction to the confusion that confronts journalism students, it has much to offer practicing media professionals. Daniels uses her years of experience as a newspaper journalist to write with authority and illuminate complex issues about newsroom politics. Interviews with alienated media professionals and a semi-autobiographical lens add a personal element that will appeal to readers interested in the inner life of the media.