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Between algorithms and a wink: journalism for young people

January 29, 2024

How can complex topics be presented to young audiences? Students from the Content Production & Digital Media Management study program tackled this question in four practical projects. The result is online, video and audio content that is not only entertaining but also highly informative.

Reaching young audiences with quality news is one of the biggest challenges in journalism. Social media is already the main source of news for 38 per cent of 18-24 year olds in Austria (Digital News Report, 2023). Only around 10 per cent still get their news mainly from radio, TV or newspaper websites or apps.

However, the battle for attention is particularly fierce on social media. Speed and emotion are key to getting noticed by users. If the topic, language and style of the post also match young people’s preferences, longer pieces of information are more likely to be used.

It is also important to understand the algorithms of each platform. These determine what content is shown in the feed. For example, the use of trending hashtags and interactions with users are “rewarded” by the algorithms with higher distribution.

How can quality journalism be heard in this environment? Students of the Content Production & Digital Media Management study program explored this question in four practical projects. The results are excellent examples of how relevant information can be produced with everyday relevance and a wink, without neglecting journalistic principles such as relevance, independence and transparency. The articles are linked below and – in the spirit of social media communication – you are welcome to share them!

Radio Lab: Jugendspache – Diggah, darf er so?

Slay, rizz, goofy: ‚Jugendspache – Diggah, darf er so? ‘is an episode of the Radiolab programme on Radio Radieschen. Among other things, we explain the history of youth language, how youth language and music influence each other and what migration has to do with it.


Instagram Reel:

Project lead: Sylvia Reim

Diverse formats: Das Interview

Taking a closer look at where the problems are: That was the aim of the current issue of the online magazine, for which the students therefore chose the provocative title “fucked up”. In various interview situations, they approached interesting people, diverse viewpoints and disturbing facts. auf Instagram:

Project lead: Nicola Löwenstein

Short videos: Tiktok, Reels & Shorts

How does quality journalism work on TikTok? Under the direction of Antonia Titze, we not only looked at reporting on the platform, but also at the rhythm, language, image design and trustworthiness of journalistic content for Gen Z. This resulted in several TikToks on the self-chosen focal points of vegan food, the Barbie film and tattoos.

Projektleitung: Antonia Titze Film

On our exciting journey through the media universe of Generation Z, we jumped right into the action and took a closer look at the hotly debated Barbie movie. It’s not just about a “plastic doll with big boobies”, it’s about a lot more than that. With plenty of verve and a dash of extravagance, we take a look at different aspects of the film from different perspectives in four videos. From hatred of men to Birkenstocks as a substitute for high heels, everything is included!

Watch on YouTube

What happens if you get a tattoo? Do tattooed people get burned in MRI scans? And what subjects would a tattoo artist never tattoo? We investigated these questions and more, and also bust some myths about tattoos.

Watch on YouTube Life

Discover inspiring vegan tips, delicious plant-based recipes and the latest trends in the plant-based lifestyle. Never miss out on important vegan news and become part of our growing community. Your daily dose of positive change starts now – follow us and see how the green lifestyle is becoming a TikTok highlight! 🌍💚
#veganlife #vegawhat

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Explanatory videos for YouTube

Explanatory videos allow journalists to provide fact-based commentary on current debates without being one-sided or preachy. The use of infographics and animation helps to visualise and understand the context. This is particularly important in the fight against misinformation and fake news. This year, the students produced explanatory videos on FIFA gambling addiction, blood donation and the hatred between Vienna’s football Ultras.

Project lead: Michael Mayrhofer

Blood in short supply?

Are we facing a blood donation crisis? Are too few people donating? Are there too few donations? There are constant calls for blood donations in Austria and there is talk of a shortage of blood reserves – what is behind this? Why the reasons are more varied than expected and what the “blood donor pension” is all about.

Watch on YouTube

Is FIFA addictive?

Everyone knows FIFA, but very few people know that it is an illegal gambling addiction. Watch this video to find out how game developers like EA and Sony make billions from FIFA by making players addicted. An Austrian court has now put a stop to this.

Watch on YouTube vs. Rapid: The hatred of Vienna’s rivals explained

Viennese society has always been divided by their favourite football club. The debate as to whether Austria or Rapid is better leads to heated discussions and riots. But why do they hate each other so much? We delved into the history and interviewed fans and experts at the stadium.

Watch on YouTube