Jay Rosen has published an extended version of a speech he gave to NYU journalism students. It includes this gem, from the Economist, about the role of journalists:
“More generally, it is the job of journalists to describe the world in a way that helps us participate in all life—political, local, civic, cultural, etc.”
A “digital innovator” named Mark Briggs waxes hopeful on the future of journalism. Generously, he says journalism isn’t about technology (though I have been trying to upgrade my mobile WordPress app) – it’s about people. Even more generously, he says “The future is in your [journalism student’s] hands” and quotes journalism student Emily Kostic:
“We all know journalism is undergoing some monumental changes as it embraces the online world more and more. However, the future of journalism and where it’s going is largely going to be left up to us — college journalism students. Think of how major that responsibility is. Think of how inspiring that is. It’s up to us to help make journalism web savvy in way that our elders can’t even imagine.”
TechCrunch had a piece on Adam Penenberg an online journalism pioneer, who teaches journalism at NYU (Carleton has really cool profs too, but they have fewer broad inspirational stories online – I will share some soon) and recently broke a story about the result of a lawsuit against Ford about the safety of its SUVs via Twitter. Of course, I now follow him on Twitter. Highlights of the piece.
Another problem with the state of journalism today – both online and off – he [Penenberg] says “is this obsession with being first – wanting to beat your rival to the story by two minutes. Is it really that important to be first?”
TechCrunch writer Paul Carr adds:
Look at the 277 stories about the Cole case. See how many reporters just rehashed the lede – the size of the damages – and Ford’s response, without asking a single new question, or presenting so much as half a new fact. But then again, how would they? That would have involved a single fucking phone call.
Finally about online vs. print.
Pennenberg laughs. “I’m sure certain journalists would prefer to write for the New York Times, [in print, rather than online]. But the truth it doesn’t matter any more. The only question is are you a good journalist or a bad journalist?”