Nadler, an assistant professor of media and communications studies, was selected as a finalist for the Frank Luther Mott Kappa Tau Alpha Journalism and Mass Communication Research Award for his book, Making the News Popular: Mobilizing U.S. News Audiences (University of Illinois Press, 2016).
Named in honor of Frank Luther Mott, a Pulitzer Prize winner, the award recognizes the best research-based book about journalism or mass communication published each year. Nadler was one of four finalists. James T. Hamilton’s Democracy’s Detectives: The Economics of Investigative Journalism was the winner.
Nadler’s book illustrates a decades-long trend in which news organizations have shifted from relying on editorial expertise to consumer preference to define and select news. The new defining ideal is that consumers decide what counts as news, rather than journalists acting as the “gatekeepers,” Nadler said.
“Among managers in many sectors of the news industry, professional journalists were no longer viewed as the best people to make the decision on what counts as news. News consumers were the ones who were supposed to decide what counts as news,” Nadler said.
Kappa Tau Alpha, the national college honor society founded in 1910 for scholarship in journalism and mass communication, has recognized research contributions to the field since the inauguration of the award in 1944. Entries are judged by a panel of university professors of journalism and mass communication and national officers of Kappa Tau Alpha. —By Ed Moorhouse