Positive and negative effects of Journalism’s technological transformation.
Journalists in the wake of the digital age are increasingly being asked to be technically proficient. The Internet is quickly becoming a key constitutive element of contemporary newsrooms and “within the last decade, web-based operations have come to be viewed as essential for newspapers” (Ofcom, 2007).
Unfortunately, this is having a negative effect on Journalism as “every mainstream newspaper has gone online but none to date have managed to make it a consistently profitable enterprise” (Natalie Fenton, 2009). Journalists are resorting to cheaper forms of news gathering, abandoning the original, expensive, time-consuming, in-depth Journalism that came before the digital age.
There are, however, positive developments such as; greater news presentation, more depth of coverage, extensive geographical reach, space for multimedia formats that allow innovative and interesting news presentation and the ability to update immediately. Unfortunately this also brings into question Journalistic integrity, as the speed of the internet often encourages stories to be released before they are checked.
Another digital development that is changing Journalism as we know it is the increasing interactive and participative nature of news. Anyone who can access a computer and the right software can be a journalist. The public is now able to access public information and information directly from political and government sources, making Citizen Journalism a growing trend. Some believe this is a positive enhancement of democracy, however, others put into question the lack of accountability and anonymity online, introducing concerns of certification, accountability and accuracy.
Image: Taken from Student World Online