How journalistic roles are performed in Canadian media

Exploring the differences between normative visions and actual practices, through a content analysis of more than 3,700 news stories contextualized with surveys, and further unpacked by interviews with journalists, this article provides a comprehensive overview of journalistic role performance in Canada.

Findings show few, yet distinct, differences between French and English media, and that Canadian journalists are often present in their stories; use high levels of infotainment; and demonstrate strong performance of both the civic and service roles compared to other countries, but perform far less of the watchdog role than journalists surveyed perceived.

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Facts and Frictions is published by J-Schools Canada/Écoles-J Canada, Canada’s national association for post-secondary journalism research and education. All content is open access and available via J-Source.