Photography As An Important Tool In News Media

Project and Seminar Material for Mass Communication

Photography As An Important Tool In News Media


Abstract


This study was carried out to examine photography as an important tool in news media using Vanguard newspaper, Lagos State as a case study. The study was specifically carried out to investigate how much photograph recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria, investigate whether the use of photograph in news media is essential for stimulating readers interest and attention, ascertain whether photograph has become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media, and investigate whether the adoption of photograph in News media increases News consumption in Nigeria. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprise of photojournalist of Vanguard newspaper, Lagos State. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 53 respondents and 50 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables. While the hypotheses were tested using Chi-square statistical tool. The result of the findings reveals that the use of photograph is highly recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria. The study also revealed that Photograph has become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media. Therefore, it is recommended that the media house should appropriately train their photojournalists in line with the requirements of photojournalism and the journalists in turn should have sense of responsibility and professionalism in quest of their duty.. To mention but few.


Table of Content


  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

The importance of photography in journalism as a veritable medium of communication has been highlighted by scholars (Kim & Chung, 2017; Udeze, 2005). Its entry into journalism in the late 19th century did not foresee this futuristic acceptability as photographic image was seen as a mere visual accompaniment to the textual news (Becker, 1996). Photography was initially considered as pure mechanical recording of what was in front of the camera; a simple rendition of reality with all its factual indices, news photographs and other journalistic images today reflect the uniqueness of photography as being more than mere mechanical recording of history. It is a medium of communication that can be used to exchange information among the visual literates.

The use of photograph in the press is known as photojournalism. For many years, photography has played an increasingly important role in the various media of mass communication that use visual messages to disseminate information (i.e. books, newspapers, magazine, film, television; and the internet – based media) (Ijeh, 2015). Photographs have been known to greatly stimulate public interest in current events and human angle stories presented by the visual media of mass communication, and have also made tremendous contributions to the civilization and advancement of mankind (Yaroson andAsemah, 2008).

The foundation of journalism is built on news stories. It is what Randel(2012) describes as “a depletable consumer product that must be made fresh daily” from activities around and beyond. This makes news a socially constructed product that comes with the cultural imperative of its maker and the nuances of the environment where it is contextualised. It is now the norm in journalism to relay news with photographs. Image usage as an element of storytelling in the media has come a long way.

The power of photographs in mass communication stems from the common knowledge that photographs are more powerful than words in message dissemination hence the dictum; “A picture can speak more than a thousand words”. This is because photographs speak a universal language and are better able to elicit the same emotions from people on different sides of languages and educational divides (Yaroson andAsemah, 2008; Fasheke 2004). In addition to creating a greater emotional response, photographs are used to capture a readers’ attention to an article. Visual images are the gateway to a news story.


1.2 Statement of Problem

News media(print media inclusive) are over the years compete and struggling to survive and one basic tactic news media have often used to put message across is the use of photographs to draw readers attention. Photographs are used extensively by newspapers and magazines to convey information and advertise products and services. The public wants to spend more time with pictures than text, and the immediacy and availability of photography makes that possible. Consumers want a photo with every story they read, but that it can cause strong emotions since a photograph can tell an entire story.

Despite the fact that photojournalists are using their camera to tell stories by bringing the source of the events closest to their readers, yet it needs to be interpreted most of the time even the STAND ALONE PHOTO need some wording to accompany it, called caption. However, a good photograph without caption may mean little or no meaning to some readers.Conversely to Anderson 1989 cited in (Kepplinger, 2006) argues that, “though the photographic image may have powerful visual impact, it does not have the ability to give any in-depth explanation of the event it presents to a world eager to be informed. It cannot tell what happened before or after an event; it cannot give political or social context, much less an analysis. The camera does not know which of the events it captures is historically significant and which are not.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The main aim of this study is to examine photography as an important tool in news media. Other aims of this study are:

  1. Investigate how much photograph recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria.
  2. Investigate whether the use of photograph in news media is essential for stimulating readers interest and attention.
  3. Ascertain whether photograph has become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media.
  4. Investigate whether the adoption of photograph in News media increases News consumption in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions will be answered in this study:

  1. To what extent is photograph recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria.
  2. Is the use of photograph in news media essential for stimulating readers interest and attention?
  3. Has photograph become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media?
  4. Has the adoption of photograph in News media increased News consumption in Nigeria?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

  • Ho: Photography has not contributed significantly to news news media.
  • Ha: Photography has contributed significantly to news news media.

1.6 Significance of the Study

It is expected that at the end of this study, it will update knowledge within the framework of the study. Particularly, it will assist photojournalists to discover more of their uniqueness in the day to activities of news production.
It will reveal to the media practitioners especially photojournalist on the benefit of photograph to readers. It will assist the photojournalists to know their role in keeping public informed through their camera.

Professionals and students of mass communication, marketing, fine art, visual communication and other related field will know the role of photographs in newspaper and book and get familiar with how it can be blend with other design element in newspaper.

It will further enable other researchers to continue from the aspect which this study has not covered as it will also serve as reference materials for future researchers who may want to expand or explore on study relating to this work.


1.7 Scope of the Study

This study focuses on photography as an important tool in news media. Hence, this study will be delimited to Vanguard news, Lagos State.


1.8 Limitations of the Study

The researcher encountered minor obstacles when conducting the study, as with any human endeavor. The significant constraint was the scarcity of literature on the subject due to the nature of the discourse, so the researcher incurred more financial expenses and spent more time sourcing for relevant materials, literature, or information and in the data collection process, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size. Furthermore, the researcher did this investigation alongside other academic activities. Furthermore, the sample size was limited because only a few respondents were chosen to answer the research instrument, therefore the results cannot be generalized to other secondary schools outside the state. Despite the constraints encountered during the research, all elements were minimized in order to provide the best results and make the research effective.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Photographs:

In this study, photographs are images or pictures use in newspaper usually to compliment news stories.

News Media:

The news media or news industry are forms of mass media that focus on delivering news to the general public. These include news agencies, newspapers, news magazines, news channels etc.

Newspaper:

It is a medium for disseminating information to the masses which is printed daily to inform, entertain and educate the public.


1.10 Organization of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter (chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on photography as an important tool in news media using Vanguard newspaper, Lagos State as a case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was to examine photography as an important tool in news media using Vanguard newspaper, Lagos State as a case study. The study was specifically carried out to investigate how much photograph recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria, investigate whether the use of photograph in news media is essential for stimulating readers interest and attention, ascertain whether photograph has become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media, and investigate whether the adoption of photograph in News media increases News consumption in Nigeria.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 50 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent were Journalist of Vanguard newspaper, Lagos State.


5.3 Conclusions

The power of photographs in mass communication stems from the common knowledge that photographs are more powerful than words in message dissemination hence the dictum; “A picture can speak more than a thousand words”.Based on the findings of this study, the researcher concluded that;

  1. The use of photograph is highly recognized and utilized in News productions in Nigeria.
  2. The use of photograph in news media is essential for stimulating readers interest and attention.
  3. Photograph has become an effective strategy for communicating specific news, information and advert through the news media.
  4. The adoption of photograph in News media increases News consumption in Nigeria.

5.4 Recommendations

The followings recommendations are hereby given as a result of the findings from the study:

  1. The media house should appropriately train their photojournalists in line with the requirements of photojournalism and the journalists in turn should have sense of responsibility and professionalism in quest of their duty.
  2. Graphic newspapers should place their independent pictures in such a way that it will not contradict the news stories placed around it
  3. The newspapers should give prominence to the use of candid pictures as it is capable of showing the reader the action in the event and story.
  4. Graphic newspapers sustain the reporting of more local news than foreign news as this will go a long way in reducing the level of internet pictures used in the newspaper
  5. Dominant photographs appearing on the front pages of news medis should be representing a news story in the newspaper which should also be highlighted on the page of the same edition.
  6. A law should be made against attack on any journalist in the course of performing their reportorial duties around the world. In some places, depending on what is being done there at that moment, taking of photograph of the environment and/or the people/things there is not allowed, and anyone who does take photograph there could have their cameras seized and/or even beaten up.

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