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The visual citizen in a digital news landscape

Allan, Stuart ORCID: and Peters, Chris 2020. The visual citizen in a digital news landscape. Communication Theory 30 (2) , pp. 149-168. 10.1093/ct/qtz028

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This article’s contribution to theory-building focuses on the everyday circumstances under which journalism encourages a civic gaze. Specifically, it elaborates our heuristic conception of the “visual citizen” to explore journalism’s mediation of a politics of seeing, paying particular attention to how and why renderings of in/visibility signify varied opportunities for civic engagement within digital news landscapes. In recognizing a distinction between direct and virtual witnessing, it establishes a conceptual basis for an inductive typology delineating interrelated, potential citizen-subject positions across a continuum. Four such positions are identified and appraised, namely the visual citizen as: (a) news observer and circulator, (b) accidental news image-maker and contributor, (c) purposeful news image-maker and activist, and (d) creative image-maker and news commentator. Evaluating these positions in relation to their significance for visual journalism, this article aims to advance efforts to rethink the inscription of imagery in news reportage and its import for public life.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Journalism, Media and Culture
Publisher: Wiley
ISSN: 1050-3293
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 11 September 2019
Date of Acceptance: 30 August 2019
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2023 06:28

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