I searched and saw that this has been discussed briefly before (see this 3-yr old thread) but I played through Dishonored recently, and before that I played Bioshock Infinite and I really felt that in both of those (relatively new) games the presence of audio logs is still just as jarring...
Don't get me wrong, I do see how audio recordings have a contextual time and place in both narrative and (especially) character development but in both Dishonored and Bioshock Infinite (and to a lesser extent the Dead Space series) audio logs feel forced and out of place. Their existence has no reasonable contextual justification, their placement within the world is often that of a hidden collectible, correspondingly left in places that have no relation to the characters whose audio has been recorded for the log, in short they don't make any sense in the context of the game.
When they're like that, they are clunky. They break the immersion rather than adding to it. They are bad.
Developing characters and conveying narrative are tough things to do but I really feel as if games can and should do better than audio logs. There are much better ways to deliver story, meaning and characterization in a contextually appropriate way.
I mean, System Shock 2 did them better than most back in 1999. That was 15 years ago. 15.
So why do developers keep going down the audio log route?