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The Boundaries of Native Advertising: An International Comparison of 20 Newspapers in Five Countries

Mon, May 29, 9:30 to 10:45, Hilton San Diego Bayfront, Floor: 4, Sapphire 400A


Native advertising mimics journalistic content while labelling it as advertising. News and native ads are differentiated through a negotiation between news attributes that form the look and feel of a typical news story and a set of boundary devices. In this paper, we explore how boundary devices are implemented and we compare how they differ within and across five different countries. As the main criticism towards native advertising is the deception of readers, it is crucial to discern how digital newspapers mirror editorial content while demarcating its commercial nature. Empirically, this comparative study draws its data from a content analysis of twenty newspapers in Norway, Sweden, Spain, Germany, and Israel. This paper contributes to the literature on native advertising in journalism from an international perspective, providing a framework to expand comparative research on the interplay of commercial and journalistic content across different countries, cultures, and media systems.