New Technologies and Journalistic Practices at the Time of COVID-19 in Africa

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Advances in Journalism and Communication


This article aimed to show how new information technologies have influenced and innovated journalism practice during COVID-19 in terms of collecting, processing and disseminating news and information. The study was literature based. A literature-based study primarily relies on existing published literature rather than collecting primary data through experiments or surveys. The findings reveal that the management of new information technologies has led to the rise of infodemia, a phenomenon of misinformation that disrupts the informational ecosystem due to the prevalence of erroneous or misleading news. As a result, the media’s role as a watchdog is compromised. Infodemia has become the most prominent dimension of this challenge, with traditional media struggling to maintain their status as reliable source of information amidst the influence of amateur journalism on social media. The traditional media plays a crucial role in covering COVID-19 but faces challenges in producing and disseminating accurate information due to the specialization of journalism and the shortage of specialists. The emergence of new categories of journalistic practices, including terrorist journalism, diversionary journalism, ideological journalism, and journalism as a business, poses a major threat to the credibility, trust, and timeliness of real news. New technologies, particularly social media, have filled the void left by traditional media and facilitated the spread of fake news and rumors. Despite the challenges, information and communication technologies have brought innovation to journalistic practices in raising awareness against COVID-19 in Africa. The study provides several recommendations based on its findings. Traditional media outlets in Africa are recommended to prioritize hiring and training specialist journalists to cover health-related topics, establishing measures to combat the spread of fake news and rumors related to COVID-19, continuing to adapt to the use of new technologies in disseminating information, upholding ethical standards in reporting, and prioritizing public health awareness and prevention. Lastly, the study suggests the need for further research to better understand the impact of new communication technologies on journalistic practices in Africa in the context of COVID-19.


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New Technologies, Traditional Media, Journalism, COVID 19 Pandemic, Infodemia


Jean-Paul, P. K., Erneo, N. N., & Rosemary, N.-K. (2023). New Technologies and Journalistic Practices at the Time of COVID-19 in Africa. Advances in Journalism and Communication, 11, 281-296.