skip to main content

Title: Designing Transparency Cues in Online News Platforms to Promote Trust: Journalists' & Consumers' Perspectives
As news organizations embrace transparency practices on their websites to distinguish themselves from those spreading misinformation, HCI designers have the opportunity to help them effectively utilize the ideals of transparency to build trust. How can we utilize transparency to promote trust in news? We examine this question through a qualitative lens by interviewing journalists and news consumers---the two stakeholders in a news system. We designed a scenario to demonstrate transparency features using two fundamental news attributes that convey the trustworthiness of a news article: source and message. In the interviews, our news consumers expressed the idea that news transparency could be best shown by providing indicators of objectivity in two areas (news selection and framing) and by providing indicators of evidence in four areas (presence of source materials, anonymous sourcing, verification, and corrections upon erroneous reporting). While our journalists agreed with news consumers' suggestions of using evidence indicators, they also suggested additional transparency indicators in areas such as the news reporting process and personal/organizational conflicts of interest. Prompted by our scenario, participants offered new design considerations for building trustworthy news platforms, such as designing for easy comprehension, presenting appropriate details in news articles (e.g., showing the number and nature of more » corrections made to an article), and comparing attributes across news organizations to highlight diverging practices. Comparing the responses from our two stakeholder groups reveals conflicting suggestions with trade-offs between them. Our study has implications for HCI designers in building trustworthy news systems. « less
Authors:
; ; ; ;
Award ID(s):
2128642
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10334909
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Volume:
5
Issue:
CSCW2
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
1 to 31
ISSN:
2573-0142
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Social media platforms have increasingly become an important way for news organizations to distribute content to their audiences. As news organizations relinquish control over distribution, they may feel the need to optimize their content to align with platform logics to ensure economic sustainability. However, the opaque and often proprietary nature of platform algorithms makes it hard for news organizations to truly know what kinds of content are preferred and will perform well. Invoking the concept of algorithmic ‘folk theories,’ this article presents a study of in-depth, semi-structured interviews with 18 U.S.-based news journalists and editors to understand how they make sense of social media algorithms, and to what extent this influences editorial decision making. Our findings suggest that while journalists’ understandings of platform algorithms create new considerations for gatekeeping practices, the extent to which it influences those practices is often negotiated against traditional journalistic conceptions of newsworthiness and journalistic autonomy.
  2. In recent years, well-known cyber breaches have placed growing pressure on organizations to implement proper privacy and data protection standards. Attacks involving the theft of employee and customer personal information have damaged the reputations of well-known brands, resulting in significant financial costs. As a result, governments across the globe are actively examining and strengthening laws to better protect the personal data of its citizens. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) updates European privacy law with an array of provisions that better protect consumers and require organizations to focus on accounting for privacy in their business processes through “privacy-by-design” and “privacy by default” principles. In the US, the National Privacy Research Strategy (NPRS), makes several recommendations that reinforce the need for organizations to better protect data. In response to these rapid developments in privacy compliance, data flow mapping has emerged as a valuable tool. Data flow mapping depicts the flow of data through a system or process, enumerating specific data elements handled, while identifying the risks at different stages of the data lifecycle. This Article explains the critical features of a data flow map and discusses how mapping may improve the transparency of the data lifecycle, while recognizing the limitations inmore »building out data flow maps and the difficulties of maintaining updated maps. The Article then explores how data flow mapping may support data collection, transfer, storage, and destruction practices pursuant to various privacy regulations. Finally, a hypothetical case study is presented to show how data flow mapping was used by an organization to stay compliant with privacy rules and to improve the transparency of information flows« less
  3. The inverted pyramid is a basic structure of news reporting used by journalists to convey information and it is considered a key element of objectivity in news reporting. In this article, we propose the Inverted Pyramid Scoring method to evaluate how well a news article follows the inverted pyramid structure using main event descriptors (5W1H) extraction and news summarization. We evaluate our proposed method on a proprietary data set of Associated Press news articles across breaking and non-breaking news spanning two topics—political and business. Our results show that the method works at distinguishing the structural differences between breaking and non-breaking news. In particular, our results confirm that breaking news articles are more likely to follow the inverted pyramid structure.
  4. The inverted pyramid is a basic structure of news reporting used by journalists to convey information and it is considered a key element of objectivity in news reporting. In this article, we propose the Inverted Pyramid Scoring method to evaluate how well a news article follows the inverted pyramid structure using main event descriptors (5W1H) extraction and news summarization. We evaluate our proposed method on a proprietary data set of Associated Press news articles across breaking and non-breaking news spanning two topics—political and business. Our results show that the method works at distinguishing the structural differences between breaking and non-breaking news. In particular, our results confirm that breaking news articles are more likely to follow the inverted pyramid structure.
  5. Many journalists and newsrooms now incorporate audience contributions in their sourcing practices by leveraging user-generated content (UGC). However, their sourcing needs and practices as they seek information from UGCs are still not deeply understood by researchers or well-supported in tools. This paper first reports the results of a qualitative interview study with nine professional journalists about their UGC sourcing practices, detailing what journalists typically look for in UGCs and elaborating on two UGC sourcing approaches: deep reporting and wide reporting. These findings then inform a human-centered design approach to prototype a UGC sourcing tool for journalists, which enables journalists to interactively filter and rank UGCs based on users’ example content. We evaluate the prototype with nine professional journalists who source UGCs in their daily routines to understand how UGC sourcing practices are enabled and transformed, while also uncovering opportunities for future research and design to support journalistic sourcing practices and sensemaking processes.