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Nudging as a tool to promote media pluralism

Patricia Cruz

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The study “To Nudge or Not to Nudge: News

Recommendation as a Tool to Achieve Online Media Pluralism” by Judith Vermeulen from Ghent University examined the issue of online access diversity – guaranteed by Article 10 European Convention Human Rights – and how to promote it while maintaining autonomy and freedom of choice for the users.

For the European Union, media pluralism has been recognized as an important public policy goal. It goes hand to hand with the notion of “media freedom”, the heightened protection granted to media activities. In the past, media diversity has been promoted by ownership regulation and transparency, workforce diversity and support measures.

In the current online media environment, source and content diversity is no longer a problem that needs to be addressed via media policies. Rather, the question is about the accessibility of digital media content, as automatic recommender systems select, deselect, prioritize, and deprioritize news articles. Exposure diversity is then the issue, and policymakers are looking at recommender systems as a tool to improve it.

Public service recommender systems are then the proposed solution that the article examines. On the flipside, States must respect their negative obligations on allowing the users to receive information without interference by the state. The proposed solution then is “nudging” as defined by Thaler and Sunstein (2008).

The aforementioned researchers define “nudging” as “any aspect of the choice architecture that alters people’s behaviour in a predictable way without forbidding any options or significantly changing their economic incentives”, considering themselves as “libertarian paternalists” in doing so.

Banning or reducing choices, therefore, are not nudging, nor is forcing a choice. Nudging serves as middle ground between rigid intervention and dogmatic laissez-faire, steering individuals yet giving them the choice on whether to follow the direction or not.

In the context of online diversity, one method is full homepage recommendation, allowing the users to select and deselect articles for consumption from a list preselected by an algorithm. Since it limits user choices, it does not, however, qualify as nudging but is instead more invasive of personal freedoms.

Taste-broadening messaging is a second way to ensure access diversity. In it, users select articles for consumption from a non-personalised list of items. It qualifies as nudging. There are also other options.

In conclusion, the author notes that States may institute recommender systems while respecting the autonomy of the users, provided they do not go beyond nudgin. States should, therefore, take positive action to ensure that citizens have access to diverse content, but not mandate such content. It is indeed important to counter commercial “filter bubbles” that recommend only similar content.

Read more: https://fastento.com/

Nevertheless, individuals must remain free in selecting news for consumption. The contribution of the article is that either libertarian (no intervention) or libertarian-paternalistic approach – nudging – can respect individuals rights under Article 10 ECHR.

The article “To Nudge or Not to Nudge: News

Recommendation as a Tool to Achieve Online Media Pluralism” by Judith Vermeulen is in Digital Journalism. (open access).

Picture: Untitled by INHYEOK PARK @travelershigh.

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Journalism

The Top Journalism Websites for News and Analysis”

Alice Trout

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Journalism plays an essential role in keeping the public informed about current events and issues. The internet has made it easier than ever to access a wide range of news and analysis from reputable sources. Here are some of the best journalism sites for keeping up-to-date on the latest happenings around the world:

  1. The New York Times (www.nytimes.com) – The New York Times is a well-respected newspaper that has been in operation for over 150 years. It offers a wide range of news and analysis on politics, business, technology, and culture.
  2. The Washington Post (www.washingtonpost.com) – The Washington Post is another well-respected newspaper that has been in operation for over 150 years. It offers in-depth coverage of national and international news, as well as commentary on politics, business, and more.
  3. The Guardian (www.theguardian.com) – The Guardian is a British newspaper that offers a wide range of news and analysis on politics, business, technology, and culture. It has a strong reputation for investigative journalism and has won numerous awards.
  4. BBC News (www.bbc.com/news) – BBC News is the online news division of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). It offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events.
  5. Al Jazeera (www.aljazeera.com) – Al Jazeera is a Qatari news organization that offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events. It has a strong reputation for its coverage of the Middle East and North Africa.
  6. Reuters (www.reuters.com) – Reuters is a global news organization that offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events. It has a strong reputation for its coverage of business and financial news.
  7. CNN (www.cnn.com) – CNN is a global news organization that offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events. It has a strong reputation for its coverage of breaking news and live events.
  8. The Economist (www.economist.com) – The Economist is a British magazine that offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events, with a focus on economics and politics.
  9. The Atlantic (www.theatlantic.com) – The Atlantic is an American magazine that offers a wide range of news and analysis on international, national, and regional events, with a focus on politics, culture, and technology.
  10. ProPublica (www.propublica.org) – ProPublica is a non-profit organization that focuses on investigative journalism. It has a strong reputation for its coverage of politics, business, and social issues.

Guest blogging is a highly effective marketing strategy that every business should be utilizing. By purchasing PR publications, you can increase traffic and establish authority.

These are just a few examples of the many great journalism websites that are available. Whether you’re looking for breaking news, in-depth analysis, or a particular perspective on current events, these sites are an excellent starting point.

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Journalism

The Ethics of Healthcare Advertising: Balancing the Right to Information with the Risk of Deception

Alice Trout

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Healthcare advertising has the potential to inform and educate the public about important medical treatments and products, but it must be done in an ethical and responsible manner. On one hand, the public has the right to access information about healthcare options that may improve their quality of life or save their lives. On the other hand, there is a risk that healthcare advertising could deceive or mislead consumers, leading to negative consequences for both the companies and the public.

One issue with healthcare advertising is the promotion of prescription drugs for off-label use. Off-label use refers to the use of a drug for a purpose that has not been approved by the regulatory agency, such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States. While it is not illegal for doctors to prescribe drugs for off-label use, it is illegal for pharmaceutical companies to promote drugs for off-label use. This is because the FDA has not determined that the drug is safe and effective for the unapproved use.

Unfortunately, some pharmaceutical companies have been known to engage in off-label promotion in order to increase sales. This can be harmful to patients, as they may be prescribed a drug that has not been thoroughly tested for the specific condition they are suffering from. In some cases, off-label use of a drug can even be dangerous.

Another issue with healthcare advertising is the use of exaggerated or misleading claims. This can include making false or unproven statements about the effectiveness of a drug or treatment, or downplaying the risks and side effects. Such practices can lead to consumers making informed decisions about their healthcare, and can also harm the reputation of the healthcare industry as a whole.

In order to strike a balance between the right to information and the risk of deception, it is important for both regulatory agencies and the healthcare industry to prioritize ethical practices in healthcare advertising. This can include measures such as strict oversight by regulatory agencies, clear guidelines for the approval and review of advertising materials, and campaigns to educate the public about how to evaluate and interpret healthcare advertising. By taking these steps, we can ensure that the public has access to accurate and reliable information about healthcare options, while also protecting against deceptive practices that can harm both consumers and the healthcare industry.

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Journalism

Supporting Startup Founders’ Mental Health: The Importance of Prioritizing Well-Being in the Fast-Paced Startup World

Alice Trout

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As the startup world continues to thrive and grow, it’s important to recognize that the fast-paced, high-stress environment can take a toll on the mental health of founders and employees. In fact, research has shown that entrepreneurs are at a higher risk for mental health issues such as anxiety and depression compared to the general population.

One key factor that contributes to this risk is the pressure to succeed and the fear of failure that can come with starting and running a business. Additionally, the long hours and lack of work-life balance that are often associated with the startup world can also contribute to mental health challenges.

It’s essential that startups prioritize the mental health of their founders and employees, not only for the well-being of the individual, but also for the overall success of the business. Research has shown that mental health issues can negatively impact productivity and decision-making, which can have serious consequences for a company.

There are a few steps that startups can take to support the mental health of their team members:

  1. Encourage open communication and create a safe space for employees to talk about their mental health concerns.
  2. Offer resources such as counseling and mental health benefits to employees.
  3. Foster a culture of self-care by promoting healthy habits such as regular exercise and proper nutrition.
  4. Set boundaries and encourage work-life balance to prevent burnout.

For those not ready to go to the doctor or looking for support, mental health startups Europe offer help through apps.

It’s important to remember that mental health is just as important as physical health, and it’s crucial that startups prioritize the well-being of their founders and employees. By taking steps to support the mental health of their team, startups can create a positive and healthy work environment that leads to success for both the business and its employees.

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