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The lowlands newsroom model: fieldwork notes on the position of the newspaper sub-editor

Astrid Vandendaele (UGent) and Geert Jacobs (UGent)
(2014) JOURNALISM STUDIES. 15(6). p.879-897
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Abstract
This paper sheds light on newspaper sub-editors, the "forgotten stepchildren of the newsroom" and considers their position within the larger organizational model of the newsroom. In order to explore the sub-editor's position in the news production chain, we take an ethnographic approach. We draw on participant observation in the newsrooms of a Belgian broadsheet and a broadsheet from the Netherlands. In our study of the sub-editor, we observe how at both newspapers the newsroom model differs from those previously described by Esser, and we propose the term "Lowlands newsroom model". At the same time, we demonstrate how, although the same Lowlands newsroom model is applied in both newsrooms, the spatial setting, division of workload and the sub-editor's profile impact on the sub-editor's ability to intervene in the news production process. We argue that exploring this newsroom model is necessary, not only considering the general newsroom flow, but also the much debated future of the newspaper "subber". Furthermore, we aim to open the door to future journalism studies research of the sub-editor and hope to move towards a more complete definition of the sub-editor as a-in the language of Gieber-genuine "newspaperman".
Keywords
JOURNALISM, COPY EDITORS, HEADLINES, ACCURACY, sub-editing, newspaper, newsroom model, ethnography

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MLA
Vandendaele, Astrid, and Geert Jacobs. “The Lowlands Newsroom Model: Fieldwork Notes on the Position of the Newspaper Sub-editor.” Ed. Bob Franklin. JOURNALISM STUDIES 15.6 (2014): 879–897. Print.
APA
Vandendaele, A., & Jacobs, G. (2014). The lowlands newsroom model: fieldwork notes on the position of the newspaper sub-editor. (B. Franklin, Ed.)JOURNALISM STUDIES, 15(6), 879–897.
Chicago author-date
Vandendaele, Astrid, and Geert Jacobs. 2014. “The Lowlands Newsroom Model: Fieldwork Notes on the Position of the Newspaper Sub-editor.” Ed. Bob Franklin. Journalism Studies 15 (6): 879–897.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Vandendaele, Astrid, and Geert Jacobs. 2014. “The Lowlands Newsroom Model: Fieldwork Notes on the Position of the Newspaper Sub-editor.” Ed. Bob Franklin. Journalism Studies 15 (6): 879–897.
Vancouver
1.
Vandendaele A, Jacobs G. The lowlands newsroom model: fieldwork notes on the position of the newspaper sub-editor. Franklin B, editor. JOURNALISM STUDIES. Cardiff: Taylor & Francis; 2014;15(6):879–97.
IEEE
[1]
A. Vandendaele and G. Jacobs, “The lowlands newsroom model: fieldwork notes on the position of the newspaper sub-editor,” JOURNALISM STUDIES, vol. 15, no. 6, pp. 879–897, 2014.
@article{4183607,
  abstract     = {{This paper sheds light on newspaper sub-editors, the "forgotten stepchildren of the newsroom" and considers their position within the larger organizational model of the newsroom. In order to explore the sub-editor's position in the news production chain, we take an ethnographic approach. We draw on participant observation in the newsrooms of a Belgian broadsheet and a broadsheet from the Netherlands. In our study of the sub-editor, we observe how at both newspapers the newsroom model differs from those previously described by Esser, and we propose the term "Lowlands newsroom model". At the same time, we demonstrate how, although the same Lowlands newsroom model is applied in both newsrooms, the spatial setting, division of workload and the sub-editor's profile impact on the sub-editor's ability to intervene in the news production process. We argue that exploring this newsroom model is necessary, not only considering the general newsroom flow, but also the much debated future of the newspaper "subber". Furthermore, we aim to open the door to future journalism studies research of the sub-editor and hope to move towards a more complete definition of the sub-editor as a-in the language of Gieber-genuine "newspaperman".}},
  author       = {{Vandendaele, Astrid and Jacobs, Geert}},
  editor       = {{Franklin, Bob}},
  issn         = {{1461-670X}},
  journal      = {{JOURNALISM STUDIES}},
  keywords     = {{JOURNALISM,COPY EDITORS,HEADLINES,ACCURACY,sub-editing,newspaper,newsroom model,ethnography}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  number       = {{6}},
  pages        = {{879--897}},
  publisher    = {{Taylor & Francis}},
  title        = {{The lowlands newsroom model: fieldwork notes on the position of the newspaper sub-editor}},
  url          = {{http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1461670X.2013.851161}},
  volume       = {{15}},
  year         = {{2014}},
}

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