• Avner Kantor University of Haifa, Israel
  • Sheizaf Rafaeli University of Haifa, Israel



data journalism, media framing, comments, audience engagement, infographics


Data journalism (DJ) fosters audience independence. It encourages content exploration through visualizations, storytelling, and direct access to data sources. DJ assists the audience to be well informed, cognitively active, and contribute to the public sphere. Achieving this objective indicates the audience's independence. How independent is the audience of DJ? This question is answered based on the level of engagement of the audience. A low level of engagement prevents the audience from helping each other to interpret the dominant meaning and to identify its deficiencies. When the audience is engaged, they are able to reframe the message from a new perspective, challenging their understanding of the message. By analyzing the audience engagement levels and comparing different types of journalism we gain insight into audience behavior. We found a significant correlation between DJ audience engagement and time. This trend may be explained by the steep learning curve of DJ, which requires a special set of skills, in addition to the willingness to analyze and discuss interpretations with others. On the basis of the trend, we can conclude that over time, the audience became familiar with DJ and adopted it. Results could contribute to the realization of the internet's original promise to make the general public independent by providing free access to information.




How to Cite

Kantor, A., & Rafaeli, S. (2021). INDEPENDENCE THROUGH DATA JOURNALISM. AoIR Selected Papers of Internet Research, 2021.



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