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Mia-Marie Hammarlin



Exposed : Living with scandal, rumour, and gossip


  • Mia-Marie Hammarlin

Summary, in Swedish

This book illuminates the personal experience of being at the centre of a media scandal. It contributes new perspectives to the field, where both moral and media transgressions are exposed. By using ethnological and phenomenological perspectives upon an extensive empirical material, from a Swedish context, the existential level of this phenomenon can be highlighted. How does such an experience affect a person’s everyday life? What happens to routines, trust and self-confidence? How does it change the initial settings of his or her life-world?

The analysis also contributes with new perspectives upon the fusion between interpersonal communication that takes place face-to-face, such as gossip and rumours, and traditional news media when a scandal is at stake. A scandal gets its momentum through the audiences. Their engagement in the moral story determines the spreading and length of it; for how long it will survive in the public and also how it will affect the protagonist. Mainly, people show their participation through traditional oral communication, which finds its ways, and also strength, through activities in digital, social forums.

The author argues that gossip and rumour must be included in the idea of the media system to be able to understand the formation and power of a media scandal, which ends up in a critique of earlier research. Oral interpersonal communication does not disappear when new communication possibilities arise. Rather it may be invigorated by it. The term news legend is introduced, to capture the entanglement between traditional news media storytelling and oral narrative.


  • Medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap
  • Institutionen för kommunikation och medier








Lund University Press


  • Media Studies


  • media scandal
  • emotions
  • public shaming
  • rumour
  • gossip
  • news legends
  • urban legends
  • folklore




  • Mediedrevets mekanismer och aktörer (finaniserat av HT-fakulteterna/financed by the Faculties of Humanities and Theology, Lund University


  • ISBN: 978-9-1983-7683-8