Tag Archives: reform

Journalist Reform

17 Apr

By: Gabriela Gonzalez

Journalism needs reform. All of this reform begins with the ones communicating the news; journalists.

People need to be interested in the news. Not only should they be interested in what is being communicated, but also in the way it is being presented. Jonathan Stray said journalists need to make people want to get “lost” on their sites just like they do on Wikipedia and Facebook. They need to want to invest time on the sites. In other words, the news needs to be presented in an engaging way. It needs to give people the interaction they find on sites that are not news sites.

One ways Stray suggests increasing engagement is through linking. Though much of journalism does not use linking, it is vital, he said, to its survival now. It also increases transparency and credibility.

The media also has to be better at giving people what they want. Journalists must learn to read and listen to the public.

Alfred Hermida thinks journalists need to acquire more skill. It is only like this that they can become entrepreneurs of new ways to communicate stories accurately and well.

He said journalists have to stop thinking “of themselves as wanting to be broadcast journalists, or radio journalists or print journalists: increasingly it’s all the same thing.”

The role of the journalist is changing; that we know. Jonathan Hewett said: “The journalist – at least in general interest media – is no longer the privileged channel, the person who knows more than anyone else and has the contacts. That’s hard to accept. Before the internet, the journalist was an elevated gatekeeper to a world that was more or less closed to the readers.”

He also said there is great reward and potential when journalists take that extra step to engage their readers and interact with them.

Thad Mcllroy disagrees about the whole notion that reform is needed and that print is dying. He said that focusing on the U.S. alone is not enough to truly report on the state of the media.

He said: “When the U.S. media look at the changes in media consumption trends, naturally enough, they tend to focus on the United States. This is terrifically misleading. Newspapers are thriving in countries such as India and China…I say to my friends and colleagues: You should feel blessed. You are part of a revolution in how information is distributed far greater than the invention of the printing press, and certain to have more far-reaching effects.”

Whatever the case may be, the Cub Reporters website makes an excellent point: “The media isn’t the only thing changing. The world of work is changing.”

If the world is changing, the way we journalists think and present information has to change as well.

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