Public service i konkurrens – hur underhållande får morgonsoffan bli?
En kvantitativ studie av Gomorron Sverige
The Swedish morning show ”Gomorron Sverige”, part of public service broadcasting, two years ago changed its profile towards being more news driven. The purpose of this paper is to review the content of the program before and after the change to see if in fact the balance between entertainment and information changed in line with ambition/the charter. The measures applied have been the number of agenda items for the specific categories as well as time spend on each category – news, entertainment or publicity of one´s own product. We have looked only at the part of the morning show not specifically dedicated to the daily news. This study is based on a quantitative analysis consisting of 193 analytical units that have been individually categorized against a system of codes where each code is representing specific characteristics. What we are looking for is the theme of content, how the content is presented and the persons represented. The current debate in media suggests that even public service broadcasters are more and more influenced by a commercial agenda. Focus is moving from a focus on quality and information towards commercial interests. Opinion differs naturally and the debate basically suggests a difference in normative expectations to public service channels. One view is that news is more and more packaged and served in ways satisfying a commercial angle. One way of evaluating this is an analysis of the balance between news and entertainment in so-called mixed programs, such as Gomorron Sverige. In this program news and entertainment comes together in what internationally is known as infotainment. Gomorron Sverige is challenged with the need to live up to the demands for quality of information and news. At the same time they are expected to retain viewer numbers while competing against channels with a purely commercial base driven by popular demand. How does the public service program present the information? The result of our analysis show that from a starting point of an equal balance between information and entertainment, there has been a move towards a larger share of information based on agenda items on the show. This is true even when measured on time allocated. Time for information driven agenda items have increased by 32 percent while time spend on entertainment has been reduced by 31 percent. Furthermore, publicity of own products has increased as well. Average time for such bits have increased by 30 seconds. Before the new charter it was not common for any such bit to exceed one minute while today they can last up to three minutes. Our analysis clearly demonstrates that Gomorron Sverige has increased its share of agenda items focused on delivering information. We find it fair to conclude that the producers of the program have delivered against the new charter. The new profile of Gomorron Sverige can be categorized as informative with an informal tone. The roles covered by guests in the program have changed ever so slightly but the guests still fill the same purpose. For the most part guests visit the program to debate issues or add knowledge as subject matter experts. Journalists represent the largest category of guests and the presenters have been given more time to shine.