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Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Future of News

by Bill Fleming

I'm watching in awe as the networks scramble
to retrieve what little news they can out of Iran.

And I can't help but notice that the RCJ and other
local papers are doing approximately the same thing,
albeit for far less profound logistic reasons.

Has it now become the reporter's job to sit and
monitor Facebook, Twitter, and email and publish
for the masses what people who are paying attention
already know?

Seems like the girls and boys next door are writing
the news AND the editorials these days. For free.
How does the MSM compete with that?

A while back, I talked with the publisher
of the now defunct RCWeekly news.

I got the impression that he thinks maybe the
function of media is becoming more like a Google
type service... an index as to where to get the latest
most reliable info on ... well, whatever.

Is that what newsmen are becoming then?

Good indexers? Linker-uppers?

Say it ain't so.


caheidelberger said...

Actually, Bill, you and the ex RCWeekly publisher have hit a nail on the head. With the explosion of information from so many sources, indexing, tagging, highlighting, and critiquing that information has become a more important function for journalists, professional and citizen, to carry out. Yes, we still have to investigate and uncover new information, but there's a heck of a lot of info on the pile already that we need to make sense of.

By the way, from the relevant spam department, listen to some of us citizen journalists talk about the future of news on SDPB's Dakota Digest today!

denature said...

It doesn't rank in the annals of Woodward and Bernstein, but the recent guv in Argentina escapade illustrates the relevance of keeping reporters as primary info retrievers. Getting leads, staking out an airport, and then listening to a yarn unravel.

We won't be well served if the future of journalism rests on reading press releases and then following up with what people are saying about the press releases.

See also the last season of 'The Wire'.