Faking the Media Ecosystem

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 08:30
Oral Presentation
Lilia RAYCHEVA, The St. Kliment Ohridski Sofia University, Bulgaria
Nadezda MITEVA, The St. Kliment Ohridsky Sofia University, Bulgaria
The processes of globalization and the advancement of the information and communication technologies are among the main milestones tracing the humankind’s developments in the 21st century. They are fundamental factors of social transformations.

The ICTs also influence the media transformations - from linear to non-linear services, as well as the audiences’ transformations - from passive consumers to active prosumers. And if the contemporary processes of politicization of the media and mediatization of politics are closely associated with the traditional media (print, radio and television), the online media space (social networks, blogs, vlogs, etc.) makes the audiences active participants in the communication process. Thus a new system, combining traditional offline and new online media, namely a media ecosystem, has been formed. Thus people can enter an unmediated, direct dialogue. However, while traditional media can rely on codes of ethics, self-regulation and co-regulation in compliance with professional principles, the content in the online environment can hardly be regulated and it is difficult to organize public correction of the delivered messages.

That is why such phenomena as distribution of alternative facts and fake news disrupt the professional journalism and can have long term negative impacts on society raising distrust of the audiences to media content.

The proposed paper has been developed within the framework of the academic projects DCOST 01/10-04.08.2017, DCOST 01-11/04.08.2017, DCOST 01-25/20.12.2017, and DN 05/11-14.12.2016 of the National Scientific Research Fund of Bulgaria. It examines the challenges of these new phenomena in the mediated ICT environment. The text leans methodologically on the PEST (political, economic, social and technological) analysis. It also presents the results of a social survey on the effects of fake news on media consumers of different demographic and social profiles. Results of a comparative analysis of in-depth interviews with media professionals on sustaining media ecology are also provided.