SCImago presents the first global media map to discover, evaluate and compare the digital development, position and leadership of journalistic companies from the perspective of their web reputation.
We start from the premise that, for there to be a recognizable and comparable reputation, it is necessary for that reputation to be identified through metrics. In an environment of digital hypercompetition, we understand that web visibility indicators can serve as valid metrics to evaluate the media by connecting the social reputation associated with the
brand idea (the ability of the media to project itself as an influential actor in society, being a prescriber and shape public opinion) with objective and measurable indicators of access and linkage that allow global benchmarking.
The Global Ranking of Media Web Reputation begins with a first approach to the press (legacy and native) as a media observatory on the digital ecosystem and the transformation processes of the journalistic industry.
In the absence of a global list of open access media (beyond the corporate or commercial ones with particular membership criteria), we began the construction of a global catalog using the following directories as a starting point.
- Directory of printed newspapers of Kiosko.net (es.kiosko.net/): the covers of hundreds of newspapers worldwide are published daily. We manually access each of them and recover all the domains. This is, however, a very limited first approximation.
- Directory of PrensaEscrita.com (www.prensaescrita.com): comprehensive list of daily newspapers (differentiating print and digital natives) published worldwide. We retrieve all domains except for strictly local media. It has a marked bias in the Hispanic media catalog that is corrected with the incorporation of more sources.
- World List of Online Newspapers (www.newspaperindex.com/): main newspapers with digital access in all the countries of the world and journalistic sources of news. Special focus on current affairs, politics and economics. We contrast with the domains already recovered. It is a list focused on the media with the greatest diffusion and impact.
- W3 Newspapers Catalog (www.w3newspapers.com/): very extensive list of media that includes both newspapers and news sites and magazines. We use this source to complete and expand the list in key countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Russia or China. Daily publication newspapers are selected (it also includes an extensive list of non-daily publications).
- World Directory of Online Newspapers (onlinenewspapers.com/): includes thousands of newspapers, as well as sites and sources of audiovisual information (radio and television) along with specialized media. It is used in a timely manner to complete.
- ComScore list: for the case of Spain and Latin America, the media auditing company collaborates with the project by providing its internal lists.
- For the Spanish case, we complete with the data from AMI, OJD and EGM, as well as with the detailed list of digital media built by Professor Salaverría's team with the digital media observatory in Spain and Portugal (IBERIFIER project).
Criteria and selection process
It is a work in progress that will be completed by opening the possibility of incorporation (provided that the basic selection criteria are met) to the media and users who request it.
The world list begins by focusing on the press (paper and digital) as it has historically been the strategic sector for the evolution of the media board and so that this first ranking of web reputation can function as an observatory of the profound process of digital transformation and reconversion in which the industry finds itself.
With these premises, and taking into account the objectives of the research project at hand, the following selection, filtering and discard criteria are established:
- Journalistic media of general information (generalists) of preferential development in the digital environment development in the digital environment.
We initially ruled out radio and television (audiovisual media) as we understand that they are still in a phase of evolution where the network acts as an amplification of their content, as well as media only present on social networks. We understand, in both cases, that they may constitute future developments of the project with their own ranking.
Specialized media (including sports and economic newspapers) are also left for a later phase, understanding that they constitute a strategic pillar in the projects of transformation and evolution of the media to the new digital ecosystem.
- Presence and autonomy as a cybermedia with its own domain: the list of media is filtered to include sites with their own URL, ruling out subdomains (very common in vertical developments or in the case of media groups). We also leave out those that do not have their own autonomy or independence and those that do not go beyond posting the pdf of the printed edition on the Internet. It is also striking that there are dozens of cases of print newspapers without an active website that, obviously, are left out of the selection.
From a technical standpoint, synergies are observed on the internet among media outlets, and these have a direct impact on the methodology we apply. In some cases, this is due to their affiliation with the same journalistic company or media group. In other instances, strategic collaboration alliances exist, aimed at enhancing the digital presence of their websites through interlinking policies and even content sharing. In these scenarios, specific patterns of access and linking are identified, which, methodologically, we take into account by adjusting the weightage of the indicators to prevent an overrepresentation of these media outlets.
Although the scenarios and strategies vary, we differentiate between media outlets that have their own domain (acting as a central or parent website) and those visualized through a specific URL (which share the domain of the media outlet serving as the aggregator for various digital newspapers)
- Cybermedia with a national-global, regional and ‘glocal’ projection: regarding the traditional geographic coverage (national, regional, provincial, local and hyperlocal), we include those that really meet the criteria of being "generalist" or "universal" in terms of their content offer. That is to say, online media that offer "global" information to their users. We rule out strictly local informative projects. As in the previous case, we understand that they may be the object of a particular analysis closely linked in this case to independent journalism.
In the global approach that the project intends to the journalistic media that are operating in the current digital ecosystem, we collect an initial characterization that can serve as a thermometer on the reality of the industry and its evolution:
- Typology: generalists, sports, economic, specialized and audiovisual (the differentiation is made to be able to rule out and focus on the generalists as the object of study of the first ranking of web reputation).
- Country, region and city of publication/media reference
- Coverage: international, national, regional-provincial, local
- Support: printed vs. digital natives
Indicators have been obtained from various sources to make up the ranking. The main ones are:
- Authority Score (SEMRUSH): Measures the overall quality of a website and influence on SEO. The score is based on the number of backlinks, referring domains, organic search traffic, and other data.
- Domain Rating (AHREFS): Measures the strength and authority of a website. It is calculated by evaluating a website's backlinks, social media posts, and other relevant data.
- Citation Flow (MAJESTIC): Reflects the number of links pointing to a given website regardless of whether the links are of good or poor quality.
- Trust Flow (MAJESTIC): Measures the quality of links pointing to a website. A web page with higher Trust Flow than Citation Flow will usually have good quality links.
From these main indicators, the Overall indicator has been constructed, in which each of them has an equal weight of 25%.