Lev-On, A., & Lowenstein-Barkai, H. (Accepted for Publication). Media events in an era of second screens: A smartphone diary app study. Online Information Review.

The paper analyzes the viewing patterns of video news items during a media event (the week of Donald Trump’s presidential visit to Israel, the first to a country outside the US), compared to a parallel comparable “ordinary” period (two weeks later, in which no inordinacy events occurred). The comparison focused on second screening activities of audiences engaged with the event, with either related or unrelated tasks. The research tool was a dedicated mobile app in which respondents were instructed to report their news-related behavior during the two periods. We found that participants reported watching significantly more news video items in the first day of the media event week compared to the first day of the “ordinary” week. More than half of the viewing reports of the media event were not on TV. In the media event week there were significantly higher percentages of viewing reports on smartphones/computers, significantly higher percentages of second-screening reports with either related or unrelated tasks, especially when the news video items were watched via a computer/smartphone. We close with conclusions about media events in an era of multiple screens.


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