News Innovation-changing times for journalists

Posted on: July 14, 2009

If we define journalism as a rag bag of what we cannot do then we will define ourselves out of a job.

The words of the Guardian’s Kevin Anderson speaking at last Friday’s News Innovation in London organised by the Media Standards Trust.

The main message of the conference was that in response to declining revenues and falling audiences,journalism must be prepared to innovate.

This innovation will come through opportunities by grasping new technology tools which have made publishing low cost and relatively easy

Community and hyperlocal were the buzzwords and there were a number of presentations in which enthused individuals were building a network around a community,maybe filling the gaps that the cutbacks in local media are producing.

Amongst those initiatives Will Perrin’s Talk about local, a project to give people in their communities a powerful online voice.

The London SE1 site described by the same Will Perrin as the best hyper local site in the UK,the Kings Cross Forum,the Sheffield Forum and

The problem is how to monetise this content.One way is Rick Waghorn’s Addiply and Rick was keen to demonstrate its potential using the Lichfield Blog which had just that morning taken a advert from its local MP Michael Fabricant.

As Rick quite rightly said, it is time for central and local government advertising ,which has supported local newspapers in the past, to gravitate to these new hyper local sites.

But back to Kevin Anderson whose remarks at the beginning of this piece set out the challenges for this new journalism.

For Kevin,the old model must change

Engagement in traditional media he explained was about in his words

getting people so pissed off that they get enraged

Instead a

sustainable model will centre around relevance and relationship

Food for thought for today’s innovating journalists?


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