This morning, we turned away from our project work slightly and looked at journalism in the perspective of being carried out online, being published online and having the skills to achieve this ‘new’ method of journalism.
Firstly, it is 100% clear to us, especially as journalism students, that the industry is changing rapidly by the year or months even- more than many industries out there. This is very much due to the fact that the internet and social media has become a big part in our everyday lives and this is also where we get our daily news from, Including: online news websites, social media like twitter is a major place to gather news- mainly from people who read the stories themselves.
This overall increased knowledge on what new technologies are available to us and being developed and how much we rely on these for our everyday lives is having a huge impact on how journalism is carried out nowadays. This means that journalists of out time now have to hold more skills than ever in order to meet the needs of those who read the news. This is known as ‘convergent journalism.’ For example, different types of media skills are the answer such as video, audio, text (just as always) and even imagery. This is simply because journalists today HAVE to adapt to he changes occurring in the industry- which is a constant change! Not only has this had an impact on how people read and access the information/news they need but also to increase the likelihood of a journalist being accepted for a job.Many newspaper brands now have websites in which more people than ever get their news from and journalists working for them will simply need more than the skills required for the print version.
Although, there are some skills which journalists haven’t needed to change or cannot change at all for the sake of the news being correct and accurate. for example, without research and research techniques, no article, video or news audio piece can exist and referencing cannot change because without it, the wouldn’t know how to access further information or if the information s even true.
However, it’s not only the way journalism has had to change according to the online demands but also how the presentation of online news has differed from that of print. We looked at a few news websites online- one of which was the ‘i100’ from the ‘Independent’. This was one we decided to take a close look at because the Independent is soon going to become a fully internet-based source of its news, even though the ‘i’ will still continue a a print newspaper. But we looked at this to mainly see what it was about it that increased its number of online readers and what the format and features were like.
What we all saw immediately was that with the first main story, there was a huge picture that related to it with the man purpose of introduction. Also, along the left-hand side, there is a bar which holds all the top 100 recent news stories and allows you to scroll down to see them all. This is an interesting feature though: the stories are ranked in order of most recent and got older as you scrolled down, shares and likes from social media users, which tells us a lot about the kind of audience it attracts- mainly students and young adults. The audience may also be related to the kinds of elements that are featured in the article such as large pull-quotes and even tweets in the articles themselves. This made me wonder about the audience being students and social media users because they would be likely to understand what all those mean. We also looked into, and which I had never heard of before were journalist principles. Some examples we looked at included: ‘first loyalty is to the public’, ‘essence is a discipline of verification (fact checking and accuracy)’, and ‘Provide a forum for public criticism and compromise.’
Other features we came into contact with the i100 website were: that each story headline captures your attention; each story consists of short, punchy sentences and (one of the most vital), each story has an active first paragraph or subheading, they include links as to where the information is from and where you can gain more information. It can be all of these features that makes our viewers demand to know more about the news and our world- and the internet and online news can only do that now.
However, this wasn’t the only website I looked at; I found a number of other news websites online that share many of the same similarities as the i100. For example, ‘The Guardian online’ has a picture which symbolizes the main story and takes up much of the main home page and also has a timeline at the side of the page featuring the most recent stories (only this was on the right-hand side). As for ‘The BBC News’ this also has a main headline picture as well as links to other related news stories for people to find out more information.
Reference(s) and screenshot(s) of the online news websites: