In Nigeria, newspaper arena for youth participation has been expanding in the past ten years, especially with the advent of the Internet. But researchers of youth communication seem to be drawn away from traditional media to Internet-enabled media thereby paying inadequate attention to this phenomenon. And it appears that, due to this inadequate attention, a clear case of increasing inclusiveness in Nigeria’s newspaper industry is scarcely mentioned in literature. This study is, therefore, designed to investigate the claims of expanding newspaper arena and extent of youth contribution to newspaper discourse on the one hand, and the relationship between the extent of their contribution and specified youth characteristics, media agenda-behaviour and topic of discourse on the other. To investigate expanding arena, the study employed content analysis; for youth participation, a survey design, which was triangulated with interview, was adopted. The findings indicate that there is a clear case of expansion of arena because each of the selected newspapers did not only set agenda for youth participation but also dedicated ample space weekly to youth discourse. Interviewed editors of the pages indicated that youths contributed more content than their newspapers needed each week but scored them low on quality of contents contributed (generally average and below average). The statistical measurement of relationship also indicated that there is a moderately significant relationship between extent of youth content creation and perceived adequacy of communication skill. But the relationships found between the extent of content creation and media agenda-behaviour and topic of discourse were insignificant. It was, therefore, recommended that attention should be paid to youth communication capacity building and media literacy to enhance their capacity to contribute to media discourse and national development.
Key words: Media- agenda, youth -participation, youth-characteristics, agenda-behaviour, Nigeria, newspaper-discourse.
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