News Agencies in the Turbulent Era of the Internet

Article excerpt

* News Agencies in the Turbulent Era of the Internet. Oliver Boyd-Barrett, ed. Barcelona, Spain: Government of Catalonia, Presidential Department, 2010. 313 pp. euro30.

This valuable anthology combines the work of nineteen authors who describe the state of world and national news agencies around the world. The volume is the fifth in the Catalan government's Col-lecció Lexikon series of studies on different aspects of journalism. Three have appeared in the Catalan language, while this and one other on European press subsidies have been published in English. Though not stated specifically, the book appears to have been issued in celebration of the tenth anniversary (in 2009) of the formation of the Catalan News Agency (ACN), one of the few new European news agencies formed in recent years.

The collective theme of these papers is how the changes increasingly impacting newspapers and electronic media clients of news agencies are forcing the latter to consider and develop services directly aimed at end users. The editor, who has taught at Bowling Green State University in Ohio since 2005, has been a long-time student of global news agencies (see, for example, The International News Agencies [1980], and The Globalization of News [1999], both from Sage).

After an introduction focusing upon changes in news agencies over the past decade, the chapters examine a literal world of existing news agencies and the pressures they face. …