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Trends in Online Journalism


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A basic overview of the online journalism space.

Published in: Technology, News & Politics
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Trends in Online Journalism

  1. 1. Trends in Online Journalism
  2. 2. Online Journalism <ul><li>One of the biggest growth opportunities is online journalism </li></ul><ul><li>Web Editors often make more money than their print editor counterparts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Expectations include writing AND technical skills </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Jobs <ul><li>Web editor and producer positions pay higher than the equivalent print positions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Web editor (Seattle) $65,000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web producer (Seattle) $89,000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>NOTE: The above info comes from survey data </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Online Journalism Jobs <ul><li>Job titles may vary, but there are typically these positions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Web Editor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Senior Web Editor/Managing Web Editor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web Producer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Senior Web Producer/Managing Web Producer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other titles: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Multimedia Assignment Editor </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Multimedia Assignment Producer </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Presentation Editor </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Internet Content Editor </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Recent Survey Results <ul><li>Highest valued “Editing and Copyediting Skills” among New Media Content Producers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>News judgment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Grammar and style </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Headline writing for the Web </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Story combining/shortening </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Recent Survey Results <ul><li>Highest valued “Content Editing Skills” among New Media Content Producers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Photo editing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reporting and writing original stories </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alternative story forms (polls, quizzes, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Audio production </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Video production </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Recent Survey Results <ul><li>Highest valued “attitude and intangible” skills in New Media Content Producers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multitasking ability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Attention to detail </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Communication skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to work under time pressure </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Reading Habits <ul><li>Reading online is typically 25% slower than print </li></ul><ul><li>Some “tricks” to keep a reader interested: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Layout with bullet points and bold subheads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Break longer stories into “chunks” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include multimedia elements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Polls </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Slideshows </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Audio/Video </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Web Journalism <ul><li>What works online? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Breaking news </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Links to credible sources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Instant archives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interactivity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multimedia </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Storytelling or Presentation Convergence <ul><li>New ways of “telling the story” are emerging </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use more than just audio, video or text </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Readers/Viewers can participate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unlimited “space” to tell the story </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-linear structure </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Example <ul><li>“Being A Black Man” in The Washington Post </li></ul>
  12. 12. Backpack Journalism <ul><li>Online journalists need to know how to write, shoot and record </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They also have technology skills for posting/uploading stories online </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“Backpack Journalism” = All the tools for reporting fit in your backpack </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-contained reporter from story creation to distribution </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. “Backpack Journalist” <ul><li>Employers want to hire someone that can do it all </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Write an accurate story fast </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use new media tools to tell the story </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Examples <ul><li>KRON-TV San Francisco </li></ul><ul><li>Current TV </li></ul>
  15. 15. Journalists Moving Online <ul><li>Some established journalists are moving online to have more control over their reporting </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Example: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>CNN’s Daryn Kagan </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Walter Cronkite blog </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Welcome to Web 2.0
  17. 17. Web 2.0 <ul><li>The term is subject to “hype” and remains in debate and in flux </li></ul>
  18. 18. Web 2.0 <ul><li>Content power shift to the masses rather than the “mass media” </li></ul><ul><li>Mass media is “de-massed” </li></ul><ul><li>It’s all about YOU </li></ul>
  19. 20. Web 2.0 & Journalism <ul><li>Architecture of participation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>User-generated content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Wikis </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>“ Crowdsourcing” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social networking sites </li></ul></ul>
  20. 21. User-Generated Content <ul><li>These sites build content from the submission of users, rather than staff editors or writers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Blogs”/Personal Journals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photos </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Podcasts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Video sharing (“Vlogs”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reviews/Advice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forums </li></ul></ul>
  21. 22. Photobucket vs. Kodakgallery
  22. 23. Beyond the Computer <ul><li>Web serves as a platform for other technologies to interoperate with </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile devices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Home entertainment devices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appliances </li></ul></ul>
  23. 24. Online Publishing Tools <ul><li>Publishing information online has become easier due to several self-publishing tools and content management systems </li></ul>
  24. 25. Example: Blogs <ul><li>Popular Blog Tools </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LiveJournal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WordPress </li></ul></ul>
  25. 26. Blog Popularity <ul><li>A new blog is started every second </li></ul><ul><li>Many remain unread and semi-anonymous </li></ul><ul><li>A few end up with a strong following </li></ul><ul><li>Most are not created by journalists! </li></ul>
  26. 27. Who is Blogging? <ul><li>Bloggers are young </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More than half (54%) of bloggers are under the age of 30. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>55% of bloggers blog under a pseudonym, and 46% blog under their own name. </li></ul><ul><li>SOURCE: PEW INSTITUTE 2006 SURVEY </li></ul>
  27. 28. Is it Journalism? <ul><li>Most bloggers do not think of what they do as journalism. </li></ul><ul><li>34% of bloggers consider their blog a form of journalism, and 65% of bloggers do not. </li></ul>SOURCE: PEW INSTITUTE 2006 SURVEY
  28. 29. Is It Journalism? <ul><li>Most have not “trained” to be journalists </li></ul><ul><ul><li>57% of bloggers include links to original sources either “sometimes” or “often.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>56% of bloggers spend extra time trying to verify facts they want to include in a post either “sometimes” or “often.” </li></ul></ul>SOURCE: PEW INSTITUTE 2006 SURVEY
  29. 30. Beyond Text <ul><li>Bloggers are using more than simple words to tell their stories </li></ul><ul><ul><li>72% Photos </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>30% Audio </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>15% Video </li></ul></ul>SOURCE: PEW INSTITUTE 2006 SURVEY
  30. 31. “ Moblogging” <ul><li>Mobile phone blogging </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Instant “on location” blogging via one’s mobile phone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photo share publishing “on the go” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Uses camera phones to see what the publisher sees instantly </li></ul></ul>
  31. 32. “ Moblogging” <ul><li>Mobile phone blogging </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Instant “on location” blogging via one’s mobile phone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photo share publishing “on the go” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Uses camera phones to see what the publisher sees instantly </li></ul></ul>
  32. 33. Moblogs and Breaking News <ul><li>U.S. east coast blackout </li></ul><ul><li>London subway terrorist bombing </li></ul>
  33. 34. User-controlled News <ul><li>Internet users like to have some control over the media they consume </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Personalized news </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Peer-recommended news </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“Open-source” news </li></ul></ul>
  34. 35. Personalized News <ul><li>Google News </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No editors are employed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Uses traffic analysis and readership patterns to determine what is most newsworthy </li></ul></ul>
  35. 36. Peer-recommended News <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Readers “vote” on what they like </li></ul><ul><li>Highest votes = highest news placement on site </li></ul>
  36. 37. “Open-Source” News <ul><li>OhMyNews </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Huge in South Korea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Expanded to international audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>41,000 “citizen reporters” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>20% of content created in-house by only 55 staff reporters </li></ul></ul>
  37. 38. “Open-Source” News <ul><li>WikiNews </li></ul><ul><ul><li>User-created news reports </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaborative editing by peers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A Russian-language version is now available </li></ul></ul>
  38. 39. Mainstream News Dominates <ul><li>Independent news is thriving, but mainstream news still dominates online </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Top U.S. news sites: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1. Yahoo! News </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2. MSNBC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>3. AOL News </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>4. CNN </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>5. The New York Times </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>SOURCE: 9/7/2006 COMSCORE REPORT </li></ul></ul></ul>
  39. 40. Mainstream News Blogs <ul><li>Mainstream news outlets are adapting their own blogs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The New York Times </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Washington Post </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CBS News </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>MSNBC </li></ul></ul>
  40. 41. The Aggregators <ul><li>News site aggregators have proven to be very popular…and influential </li></ul><ul><li>They do not write news, but they do create headlines and selectively choose which stories get coverage </li></ul>
  41. 42. The Aggregators <ul><li>Drudge Report </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Conservative in nature </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Monica Lewinsky/Bill Clinton Scandal </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Huffington Post </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Liberal response to Drudge Report </li></ul></ul>
  42. 43. The Aggregators <ul><li>Beyond news, there are several popular aggregate blog sites for specific areas of interest </li></ul><ul><li>Examples: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
  43. 44. “ Crowdsourcing” <ul><li>“ Crowdsourcing” is a new trend in online journalism that has many supporters and skeptics </li></ul>
  44. 45. What is “Crowdsourcing?” <ul><li>A collaborative form of reporting </li></ul><ul><li>Each contributor researches and contributes a component to the overall piece </li></ul><ul><li>The actual story may or may not be written by a collaborator </li></ul><ul><li>Content is usually overseen by a centralized editor </li></ul>
  45. 46. “Pro-Am” Journalism <ul><li>Crowdsourcing is often referred to as “pro-am journalism” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A combination of both professional and amateur contributions </li></ul></ul>
  46. 47. Examples of “Crowdsourcing” <ul><li>In Journalism: </li></ul><ul><ul><li> and NYU: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minnesota Public Radio: Public Insight Journalism </li></ul></ul>
  47. 48. Gannett Restructuring <ul><li>Major media company Gannett restructured most of its print and Web operations to include “crowdsourcing” in Nov. 2006 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Information Centers” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gannett is the largest newspaper publisher in the U.S. (by circulation) </li></ul></ul>
  48. 49. Pros <ul><li>Community involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Transparency of reporting process </li></ul><ul><li>Micro-reporting of events and developments normally missed by mainstream media </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Hyper-local” reporting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Builds valuable “database” of content </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tomorrow’s “reporters” may also be “database managers” </li></ul></ul>
  49. 50. Cons <ul><li>“Amateur” reporting has its risks </li></ul><ul><li>Majority rules </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Stories only developed because users ask for it (or participate in it) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Subject to manipulation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Political or personal agendas might inspire disproportionate coverage of particular issues </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Staff reporters might lose some value </li></ul>
  50. 51. “Assignment Zero” <ul><li>Launched March 2007 </li></ul><ul><li>Users “log in” to find potential news story assignments that they can contribute to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Suggest questions for the reporter to ask </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conduct research/interviews for the story </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In some cases, you can actually write the full story </li></ul></ul>