Jurisdictional protectionism in online news: American journalists and their perceptions of hyperlinks

Tsan-Kuo Chang*, Brian G. Southwell, Hyung Min Lee, Yejin Hong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Because of their widespread use on the internet, hyperlinks have become a useful tool in information sharing and knowledge distribution in online communication, particularly in the realm of journalism. Their importance has received little scholarly attention, however. Against the backdrop of the sociology of professions, the purpose of this study is to determine how journalists approach hyperlinks and what they perceive to be their functions in online news. A national survey of newspaper editors and TV news directors in the United States shows that American journalists exhibit a sense of jurisdictional protectionism in online news. They appear to privilege US hyperlinks over foreign ones, especially internal links to their own websites. They are also predominantly against linking to foreign news media that cover the same events or issues. Financial consideration seems to be the main reason behind the journalistic preference.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)684-700
Number of pages17
JournalNew Media and Society
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2012


  • American journalists
  • cyberspace
  • hyperlinks
  • international communication
  • jurisdictional protectionism
  • online news
  • sociology of professions
  • survey


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