1. The “We Know You’ve Got a Story” banner is an advertisement. (a) The banner appears to have been put there by the editor of the online news publication to influence the thinking of the readers and persuade them to purchase it. Advertisements are used to grab the attention of consumers and attract them to buy a product or service (Alalwan, 2018). Consumers’ purchase decisions heavily rely on advertisements as they give the consumers reasons for purchasing a product or service. The banner can be effective in influencing consumers’ purchase intentions by invoking their thoughts on the stories in the news publication.
2. The “Should California Stop Growing Almonds” block is an article that provides information on the growing of almonds in California. (a) Although the author of the article is stated, it does not qualify to be an advertisement as the sponsor is not indicated. Advertisements in news publications are mostly identified with labels that make the ads different from other articles (Amazeen & Muddiman, 2018). These labels are designed to make advertisements look different from other news articles, although it can still be challenging to determine what comprises an advert due to the tactics publishers use to present advertisements as articles.
3. The “Real Reasons Women Don’t Go Into Tech” block is an advertisement, which informs readers about women’s involvement in careers in technology. (a) What makes it easy to identify the block as an advertisement is the inclusion of the words “Sponsored content” which is written in a different font and color to differentiate it from the other information (Amazeen & Muddiman, 2018). The word “sponsored” is commonly used to identify ads that are cloaked in the guise of stories. The advertisement targets a specific audience (women) or even spreads awareness because the issue is of public interest, which can be described as covert & public-serving advertising (Wojdynski & Evans, 2020).
4. The post provides strong evidence of how the Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant has affected the surrounding environment. The article is accompanied by a picture that portrays the impact of the power plant on the vegetation in the surroundings. The reader can easily relate to the author by observing the abnormalities in the flowers. The deformations suggest the radiation from the nuclear power plant disaster affects the structural development of the plant’s flowers (Matsala et al., 2022). The post can be used to show what happens when plants are exposed to nuclear radiation. The picture used in the post communicates to the reader by showing the defects associated with the nuclear accident in the environment.
5. The tweet might be a useful source of information for research because Moveon.org is a reputable organization. The information in the tweet was obtained from survey data that was collected from 816 gun owners, which is not a small sample size. The size of the sample influences the validity of the information collected from the sample. (a) The tweet might not be useful because there could be factors that influenced the decisions made by the individuals interviewed. The information posted on social media is mostly designed to influence the reader, which limits its credibility (Kim et al., 2019).
6. The activity has been educative as it enhanced my understanding of the analysis of what constitutes an advertisement in a news article. It can be difficult to differentiate a news article from an advertisement posted in the form of a news article as there are no major differences. It is important to identify the labels that publishers use to distinguish advertisements from news articles. The other important thing learned from the activity is the need to understand how the information presented in an article would be interpreted by the reader. The reader should be able to get the targeted objective of the author after reading a published post.
Alalwan, A. A. (2018). Investigating the impact of social media advertising features on customer purchase intention. International Journal of Information Management, 42, 65-77. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijinfomgt.2018.06.001
Amazeen, M. A., & Muddiman, A. R. (2018). Saving media or trading on trust? The effects of native advertising on audience perceptions of legacy and online news publishers. Digital Journalism, 6(2), 176-195. https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2017.1293488
Kim, A., Moravec, P. L., & Dennis, A. R. (2019). Combating fake news on social media with source ratings: The effects of user and expert reputation ratings. Journal of Management Information Systems, 36(3), 931-968. https://doi.org/10.1080/07421222.2019.1628921
Matsala, M., Senf, C., Bilous, A., Diachuk, P., Zadorozhniuk, R., Burianchuk, M., & Seidl, R. (2022). The impact of radioactive contamination on tree regeneration and forest development in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Applied Vegetation Science, 25(1), e12631.
Wojdynski, B. W., & Evans, N. J. (2020). The covert advertising recognition and effects (CARE) model: Processes of persuasion in native advertising and other masked formats. International Journal of Advertising, 39(1), 4-31. https://doi.org/10.1080/02650487.2019.1658438