Lecture or engagement? : communication with readers on three North Carolina newspaper blogs

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Ritz, Cheyanne.
Spillman, Mary M.
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Thesis (M.A.)
Department of Journalism
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When a newspaper editor starts a blog, he or she has a new tool to interact with audiences. This paper examines this interaction. Where do editors’ blogs fit into the editor’s toolbox? How are editors communicating with their readers on their blogs? From the findings of this study, it appears editors’ blogs require dedication and commitment to be successful. The blogs were markedly different in the number of posts, number of reader comments, and the number of comments left by editors. The findings of this study lead to the conclusion that the editors’ blogs were used as complementary tools by editors who were willing representatives of their newspapers in the public eye. By committing to a blog and using it effectively, editors are reaching out to audiences in new ways. The results from this study of editors’ blogs at three North Carolina newspapers will provide insight to other editors who are using blogs or expect to use blogs as a communication tool, and will help researchers as they establish new benchmarks in the study of new media.