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We're in this together: a multi-stakeholder approach for news recommenders

Smets, A., Hendrickx, J., & Ballon, P. (2022). We're in this together: a multi-stakeholder approach for news recommenders. Digital Journalism, 10(10), 1813-1831. 

News recommenders are attracting widespread interest in scholarly work. The current research paradigm, however, holds a narrow (mostly user-centered) perspective on the recommendation task. This makes it difficult to understand that their design is in fact the result of a negotiation process among multiple actors involved, such as editors, business executives, technologists and users. To remedy this, a multi-stakeholder recommendation paradigm has been suggested among recommender systems scholars. This work sets out to explore to what extent this paradigm is applicable to the particular context of news recommenders. We conducted 11 interviews with professionals from three leading media companies in Flanders (Belgium) and find that the development of news recommenders is indeed characterized by a negotiation process among multiple stakeholders. However, our results show that the initial multi-stakeholder framework is not adequately accommodating some of our findings, such as the existence of preconditions, the role of product owners, and the indirect involvement of particular stakeholders. Based on our analysis, we suggest an elaborated framework for multi-stakeholder news recommenders that can contribute to scholarship by providing a multi-sided perspective towards the understanding of news recommenders.

Recommender Systems, Newsmedia, Stakeholders

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