This chapter examines the digital infrastructure connected to media website architecture and discusses effects of such infrastructures on journalistic ideals of providing the information needed to enable a democratic public (cf Strömbäck, 2005; Fenton, 2010). By using the media tech stacks as our point of departure, we first map and categorize the systems sustaining journalism. We find that three functional categories of technologies can be observed in the media tech stacks: production and publishing technologies; distribution technologies; and technologies that enable the commercial viability of media. Next, by mapping third-party web services found on 361 European media websites, we uncover that the media in general rely heavily on Big Tech-provided systems for the production and distribution of journalistic content. In addition, we observe a large quantity of ‘small tech’ which tend to be overlooked in discursive tales around the dominance of Big Tech. Finally, we discuss the democratic significance of the systemic interdependency between journalistic media and the technological infrastructures.
|Title of host publication
|DataPublics : The Construction of Publics in Datafied Democracies
|Jannie Møller Hartley, Jannick Kirk Sørensen, David Mathieu
|Bristol University Press
|31 Jul 2023
|Published - 31 Jul 2023