An Insidious Poison or a Door to the Story? A newsroom-centered approach to framing

J.L.J. Boesman, B. Van Gorp

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The aim of this paper is to grasp the influence of the newsroom on frame-building processes. First, journalists’ own understanding of “frames” and “framing” is discussed. Second, from an academic interpretation of these concepts, journalists’ framing practices are studied. To this end an ethnographic study was conducted at two newsrooms, one in Belgium and one in the Netherlands. The findings reveal that while the noun “frame” is sporadically used as a tool, the verb “framing” is considered as something from which a journalist should refrain. This is explained by the associations journalists make with strategic framing from sources as well as by the newspapers’ explicit attempt to no longer view the world from a single ideological frame. It is argued that the studied newsrooms have replaced ideology by, respectively, a counterframing strategy that strives to disprove existing frames (deframing) and a narrative approach that, one the one hand, sharpens existing frames but, on the other hand, offer more opportunities to create alternative frames (reframing) for events.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-576
Number of pages18
JournalJournalism Practice
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 28 May 2017


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