Online Bulletin Boards as Journalism Beats: Data

Major papers copy-paste the most sensational anecdotes without any fact-checking.

Online Bulletin Boards as Journalism Beats: Data

The latest trend in clickbait journalism is to scour online bulletin boards for sensational anecdotes.

South Korea’s online environment is full of what are called “online communities” 온라인 커뮤니티, online bulletin boards that are similar to Reddit. Major online communities like DCInside 디씨인사이드, Inven 인벤 and Ruliweb 루리웹 host tens of millions of visitors each month, up-voting, down-voting and commenting on posts submitted by users.

Increasingly, major news outlets are simply copy-pasting the community posts and publishing them as news articles, without any fact-checking or independent reporting. A recent example is the October 17 article by Chosun Ilbo 조선일보, "covering" a story of a father-in-law walking in on a woman who was showering.

The worst offender for 2021, according to a recent study, was Segye Ilbo 세계일보, which ran 1,444 such articles this year. Money Today 머니투데이 (1,419), Maeil Business 매일경제 (1,384), Korea Economic Daily 한국경제 (1,338), and JoongAng Ilbo 중앙일보 (1,110) rounded out in the top five.

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