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Metrics at WorkJournalism and the Contested Meaning of Algorithms$
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Angele Christin

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691175232

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691175232.001.0001

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The Fast and the Slow

The Fast and the Slow

Producing Online News in Real Time

(p.102) Chapter 5 The Fast and the Slow
Metrics at Work

Angèle Christin

Princeton University Press

This chapter explores the consequences of distinct understandings of metrics on the daily life of news organizations. It looks into two key aspects of metrics: editorial production and compensation systems, and analyzes the editorial routines associated with online news production. The chapter assesses how TheNotebook and LaPlace websites handled the tension between “fast” and “slow” news and highlights contradictory views on the bureaucratic and disciplinary dynamics that structured the daily life of the two websites. It also reveals the differences in the distinct strategies of TheNotebook and LaPlace for handling the tension between click-based and editorial modes of evaluation. By showing how digital metrics become integrated in broader organizational dynamics, the chapter reveals the dialectical relationship between algorithms and their contexts.

Keywords:   digital metrics, news organizations, editorial production, compensation systems, editorial routines, TheNotebook, LaPlace

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