Abstract

Can online media criticism form a robust basis for media accountability? The authors report that the perceived impact of such criticism illustrates notable national differences. Based on a survey of journalists from twelve European and two Arab countries, they find online participatory accountability models to be least influential in countries with well-developed media accountability practices, and most valued in countries without a long tradition of media self-regulation. However, they find that the former are gradually losing control of such practices, and suggest that the practices be institutionalized under the form of “regulated self-regulation” to provide a clear framework.

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Author notes

*

Visiting Professor, Institute of Media and Communication, Dresden University of Technology.

Lecturer in Journalism, Department of Journalism, City University London.