Between tradition and change: A review of recent research on online news production

Eugenia Mitchelstein*, Pablo J. Boczkowski

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

309 Scopus citations


Online news media have become a key part of social, economic, and cultural life in many societies. Research about these media has grown dramatically, especially in the past few years, but there have been few reviews of this research and none of the most recent scholarship. This article reviews scholarship on online news production published since 2000. It examines research on five key topics: historical context and market environment, the process of innovation, alterations in journalistic practices, challenges to established professional dynamics, and the role of user-generated content. A tension between tradition and change emerges from this discussion and is evident at two levels. First, the world of practice seems to straddle the re-enactment of established forms and tinkering with alternative pathways. Second, the modes of inquiry oscillate between using existing concepts to look at new phenomena and taking advantage of these phenomena to rethink these concepts and come up with new ones. The article concludes by identifying shortcomings in the existing scholarship and suggesting avenues for future studies to overcome them. It suggests how scholarship on online news production could contribute to rethinking some of the fundamental building blocks of understanding communication and society in the contemporary media environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)562-586
Number of pages25
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2009


  • Journalism studies
  • Media production
  • New media scholarship
  • Online journalism
  • Online news
  • Online news production

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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