In a world that revolves around technology, most companies and professions are being forced to change with the times. This is no different for people, like myself, who work in the news business. Reporters are expected to report, obviously, but in order to be trusted and respected sources of news, they are expected to do much more than that.
Multimedia news is growing and people in the business need to grow with it. Stories are not just written, printed in the paper, and delivered to people’s doors anymore. The number of ways people consume news is infinite, and a good journalist should have the drive and desire to get their stories out on as many platforms as possible.
Using social media to tease and link to stories helps reporters build a following and readership. Using photos, videos, data, charts, maps, soundbites, etc. keep the reader interested and engaged and allows for more stimulation than black ink on a page or screen does.
Some news organizations have begun to master the multimedia world. The New York Times did just that with their recent piece on the Memorial Day killings in Chicago. In my opinion, this article is an exemplary of extraordinary multimedia use. The online article includes video compilations of footage from the scenes of the crime, photos with amazing quality and composition, a timeline-like arrangement of photos and videos, scanner audio, social media posts from victims just before their death, statistics and maps and anything else they could do to add an extra element to the story. This article is an excellent piece of journalism an an example of why more journalists should want to learn all of the skills that go into creating a masterpiece like it.
The Wall Street Journal created a video about the importance of journalism organizations adapting to the use of mobile devices to consume media. Employees of well-known media organizations give testimony to the importance of creating an experience for readers beyond just words on their devices.
Journalism has changed. The world has changed. Journalists who plan on being successful in this ever-changing business need to be able to adapt.