What are newspaper editorials interested in? Understanding the idea of criteria of editorial-worthiness

Marques, Francisco Paulo Jamil and Mont'Alverne, Camila (2021) What are newspaper editorials interested in? Understanding the idea of criteria of editorial-worthiness. Journalism, 22 (7). ISSN 1464-8849 (https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884919828503)

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Despite the large array of research dedicated to examining the concepts of news values and newsworthiness, journalism studies barely attempt to deal with the idea of editorial-worthiness at the theoretical level. This article proposes a conceptual foundation to reflect on the elements influencing how news organizations build their editorial positions. Studying the idea of editorial-worthiness is essential to catalog the characteristics guiding newspapers’ editorial decisions and production processes, as well as to understand the differences between professional rules and cultures shaping opinionated practices in contemporary journalism. By employing an approach based on a review of the literature, the article proposes a conceptualization of criteria of editorial-worthiness consisting of (1) editorial factors and (2) editorial values, further divided into 25 items. The proposal allows journalism research to acknowledge how the gatekeeping function plays out on editorial pages by categorizing the elements influencing editorial production routines.