Journalists are like dams. They filter the flood of news information into the stories that go streaming out their audience. But with social media and the age of digital reporting, CBC Radio’s Jesse Hirsh explains that there are new challenges for journalists because their job is no longer restricted to the professionals. When it comes to news, the floodgates are open.
“Journalism is undergoing a dramatic industrial change, because the economics of journalism are really what’s transforming, induced by technology” says Hirsh, the founder of the Academy of the Impossible. “It has to do with the democratization of news, that anyone can be a journalist, anyone can make a living as a journalist.”
Since the web doesn’t operate on a 9-5 work model, traditional newsmakers are now trying to keep up with a 24/7 news cycle and there’s even more pressure to get the story first. As seen with digital reporting on the Boston bombings, getting there first doesn’t always mean that you win the race.
Hirsh also highlights that now that anyone can control the flow of information, the public is able to filter their news to limit it to specific interests. While only reading about sports or your city may sound practical, Hirsh explains that it risks creating an insular community where people only read and discuss topics that are specifically tailored for them – blinding them to the big picture.
News needs an audience and audiences need news – but how is technology changing this relationship? Are we headed towards a world without journalists or is there still value in professional reporting?
Ramona Pringle sits down with Hirsh to tackle some of these tough topics in his two part interview “Who are the New Newsmakers?”
By: Ishani Nath (@ishaninath)