Dear Colleagues,
Anyone with an interest in alternative media might find the following new book of interest:
What's the Point of News? A study in ethical journalism

There is a brief introductory video here:

Further details are below for those who require them.

All the best,

Tony Harcup.


“Tony Harcup’s re-imagining of news and re-thinking of news values is bold and innovative yet simultaneously based on empirical research on innovations that actual journalists have undertaken. His solution, therefore, is both practical and ethical, showing a pathway to a journalism that really does serve the public interest. His use of feminist theory, especially feminist standpoint epistemology, is the most sophisticated I've seen in journalism studies. Everyone interested in journalism - scholars, practitioners, critics, students - should read this book.”

- Linda Steiner, Professor of Journalism, University of Maryland, USA.

 “At a time of unprecedented turbulence for journalism, this book makes a ground-breaking contribution by asking the fundamental question: What is news for? Challenging received understandings of news values, the book develops the idea that news should, first and foremost, serve the public good. Essential reading for scholars, students and practitioners of journalism.”

- Karin Wahl-Jorgensen, Professor of Journalism Studies, Cardiff University, UK.

“The news media is facing a serious crisis that is driving an incredibly damaging democratic deficit. Tony Harcup analyses the news, its meaning, its point and some of its impediments. He concentrates on why journalists produce news – whatever its uses – and avoids popular, if important, distractions such as fake news. I have no hesitation in recommending this book to practitioners and students.”

- Chris Frost, Professor of Journalism, Liverpool John Moores University, UK.

What's the Point of News? A study in ethical journalism by Tony Harcup (2020), published by Palgrave Macmillan:

  • * Explores what journalism might become if practised alongside a commitment to ethical listening and active citizenship;  
  • * Challenges dominant news values in theory and practice by drawing on feminism and other forms of  critical thinking;
  • * Proposes an alternative set of contemporary news values based more on ideas of social justice than on chasing clicks.
This book questions whether the news we get is as useful for citizens as it could, or should, be. This international study of news is based on re-thinking and re-conceptualising the news values that underpin understandings of journalism. It goes beyond empirical descriptions of what journalism is to explore normative ideas of what it might become if practised alongside commitments to ethical listening, active citizenship and social justice. It draws lessons from both alternative and mainstream media output; from both journalists and scholars; from both practice and theory. It challenges dominant news values by drawing on insights from feminism, peace journalism and other forms of critical thinking that are usually found on the margins of journalism studies. This original and engaging contribution to knowledge proposes an alternative set of contemporary news values that have significant implications for the news industry, for journalism education and for democracy itself (it says here).