Utilizing bots for sustainable news business: Understanding users' perspectives of news bots in the age of social media

Hyehyun Hong, Hyun Jee OH*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The move of news audiences to social media has presented a major challenge for news organizations. How to adapt and adjust to this social media environment is an important issue for sustainable news business. News bots are one of the key technologies offered in the current media environment and are widely applied in news production, dissemination, and interaction with audiences. While benefits and concerns coexist about the application of bots in news organizations, the current study aimed to examine how social media users perceive news bots, the factors that affect their acceptance of bots in news organizations, and how this is related to their evaluation of social media news in general. An analysis of the US national survey dataset showed that self-efficacy (confidence in identifying content from a bot) was a successful predictor of news bot acceptance, which in turn resulted in a positive evaluation of social media news in general. In addition, an individual's perceived prevalence of social media news from bots had an indirect effect on acceptance by increasing self-efficacy. The results are discussed with the aim of providing a better understanding of news audiences in the social media environment, and practical implications for the sustainable news business are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6515
JournalSustainability
Volume12
Issue number16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

User-Defined Keywords

  • News bots
  • Prevalence of bot news
  • Self-efficacy
  • Social media bots
  • Social media news
  • Sustainable news business

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