Remediation in the hybrid media environment: Understanding countermedia in context

Toivanen, Pihla; Nelimarkka, Matti; Valaskivi, Katja
New Media & Society

We examine the position of five online-only ‘countermedia’ publications often publicly labelled as ‘fake media’ and use them to indicate how the ‘post-truth era’ takes place. Both academic and public discussions perceive countermedia as separate and distinct from the established, professionally produced journalist media outlets. We argue that the studied outlets are an integral part of the hybrid media environment. Our data show countermedia mainly remediate content initially published by professional Finnish media. We also suggest that media references are used strategically to explicate a relationship with mainstream media, as there are different ways of remediating the mainstream media content. This evidence contributes to the growing body of work criticising the usage of the ‘fake media’ concept and attempts to create a more nuanced understanding of countermedia’s role in its contexts. Furthermore, we suggest remediation as a lens may help scholars understand the integrated hybrid media environment.