We need to spend more time learning about what we think and why vs. repeating what others think. This will be the underlying theme of this week's posts. A great place to start developing this concept is with news media.
If you look hard enough, you can find examples of new ways of thinking about journalism that are actually evolving old media into new media. How a journalist engages fans on Facebook is one way. Several veterans of old media reporting are advancing the conversation on new media.
These professionals believe that online makes for better media, they understand that people want to help gather information and collaborate on the news making process and know that online you can track what people choose to pay attention to.
Just like for other businesses, news organizations can stay in control of their decisions and reactions to those dialogues and participation. A quality jump that many have not made yet, as reflected by their inability to migrate online successfully.
I picked five among the many journalists whose blogs I read to highlight diverse examples of new thinking on journalism.
By Matt Thompson, currently undertaking a year-long research fellowship with the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri. Previously the deputy Web editor of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Before that, the first online reporter/producer at the Fresno Bee, and a Naughton Fellow for Online Reporting and Writing at the Poynter Institute. He now sits on Poynter’s National Advisory Board. He graduated from Harvard in 2002 with an honors degree in English.
What I like about Newless.org is Matt's understanding that context plays a very big role in how news needs to be delivered and understood.
Up until a few days ago, Matthew Ingram was a blogger and communities editor at The Globe and Mail. Today, he's a senior writer with the GigaOm network. I admit that I'm a fan of Om Malik as well and I cannot help but think that with the addition of professionals of the caliber of Ingram, GigaOm is winning the journalism war of talent.
If you want to learn about new media and news, listen to this TEDxToronto talk by Ingram. It will be a good use of your time and teach you a thing or two about journalism and community building.
This is the blog by NYU professor Jay Rosen. He hasn't written anything new on the blog for a while, but you can dig into what is there to get a very good idea of what journalism should be about. The name of the blog means press critic, an observer of journalism’s habits, and also a writer trying to make sense of the world. Rosen is interested in the ideas about journalism that journalists work within, and those they feel they can work without. He tries to discover the consequences in the world that result from having the kind of press we do.
Rosen's tagline is ghost of democracy in the media machine. He points to the history of struggle for press liberty, to the long rise of public opinion, and of course to the Constitution, a source from which The Media try to draw legitimacy. But the First Amendment actually speaks of the press, which doesn’t mention media.
This is the brainchild of Julie Starr, a journalist by trade who has worked in the media for 20 years or so in NZ and the UK. Starr just launched All About the Story, a site that aims to highlight quality stories foe the online news marketplace. In other words, it's a place to sell and buy news features, reviews, opinion pieces and other stories of interest to newspaper, magazine and web publishers.
Journalists do have to look to the future. Maybe All About the Story is not your answer. It may well be a very good start.
Dan Gillmor writes this users' guide of media in a networked age. Gillmor calls into question why newspaper editors think it’s fine to wink at obvious deception. In a recent post, he writes - ghost-written op-eds are often compared with speechwriter-written speeches. Since we all know that most famous people don’t write their own lines for speeches, goes this logic, we should assume the same with a byline — whether on a book or an op-ed.
I’d like to hold journalists to a slightly higher standard, too.
These are my sources of thinking on new journalism. What are yours and why?
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