Monday, October 5, 2009


In newsrooms, who’s the chicken and who’s the egg?

Some reporters use social media to find out what’s happening in our coverage area and find sources, while others see it as a time waster and a fad. Some are trying to make it second nature to post as quickly as possible, and others wait for the night staff to do it.

Is it up to writers to choose whether to change the way they do business, or do employers have a responsibility to kick some ASCII?

There’s something tempting about letting reporters lie in the beds they’ve made. Those of us who are ahead of the game and learning the trends in delivering digital journalism are at an advantage. But the bigger picture makes me think we’re weaker as a whole unless we’re all aboard the new media train.

Do we penalize staff for not having enough Facebook friends? That’s the last thing this industry needs as we pick up the pieces and brace for more change. Do we offer incentives? My incentive is giving my career a fighting chance, and I’m doing that by sampling all the social media I can and trying to improve how I deliver news online.

I’m predominantly doing this on my own time. Maybe it’s a question of employers seeing the value of giving reporters more time during their shift to learn about and use social media tools. I’m not going to wait for that invitation. I’m crashing the digital journalism party. It’s either that or end up with egg on my face.

The Hyper Journalist


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