Published on October 5, 2007
The future of news: The future of news Current topics in professional newsrooms Dave Zeeck, Reynolds HS Journalism Institute, UN-Reno, 7/16/07 Five topics : Five topics Attracting new readers Readership Institute Types of journalism Kovach and Rosenstiel Journalism that has value Rosenstiel’s ideas from the “future of news” seminar at Poynter Alternative story forms Writing for the Web Attracting new readers: Attracting new readers Start with the experience you want readers to have Readership Institute identified 34 experiences commonly reported by readers Some are motivators, some are inhibitors to readership Eight were most powerful: Eight were most powerful Chosen because General applicability; most powerful in young adults Ethnicity wasn’t a factor: all-inclusive You can do these Applicable to gradual improvement Applicable to innovation The Big Eight: The Big Eight Six motivators Looks out for my personal and civic interests Makes me smarter Gives me something to talk about It’s always there and it’s high quality It’s a good value The ads are useful The Big Eight: The Big Eight Two inhibitors It’s too much This newspaper discriminates and stereotypes What about young readers ?: What about young readers ? Do they want the same experiences Or are they different? Which are most important? Experiences with impact For Young and Diverse Readers: Experiences with impact For Young and Diverse Readers Something to talk about regularly refer stories and ads to friend Discriminates and Stereotypes Ad usefulness Makes me smarter Looks out for my civic and personal interests Value for my money Too much Good service Something to Talk About: Something to Talk About “I bring up things I've read in this newspaper in conversations with many other people ” “I like to give advice and tips to people I know based on things I've read in this newspaper ” “Part of my role among friends or family is to keep them informed because I read the newspaper ” “I show things in the newspaper to people in my family” “I like to talk about the national news and current events I read about in it ” Something to talk about Discriminates and Stereotypes: Discriminates and Stereotypes Discriminates and Stereotypes “I worry that other people reading this paper will get the wrong impression of minority groups” “This newspaper is basically about white America” “This paper has a history of discrimination against minorities” “They only target minorities for their money. They don't really care about them” “This paper is sometimes unfair in its stories about minorities” “This newspaper perpetuates racial or ethnic stereotypes” GOAL: Grow Readership: GOAL: Grow Readership EXPERIENCE GOAL: Grow Readership: GOAL: Grow Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION GOAL: Grow Readership: GOAL: Grow Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC GOAL: Grow Readership: GOAL: Grow Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC CONTENT ACTION STEP GOAL: Grow Diverse and 18-24 Year Old Readership: GOAL: Grow Diverse and 18-24 Year Old Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC CONTENT ACTION STEP Hispanics and Experiences: Hispanics and Experiences “Talk about it” Rate it higher than non-Hispanic whites “Discriminates and stereotypes” Rate it higher than non-Hispanic whites, but not as high as African Americans “Ad usefulness” and “value for my money” Rate it higher than do non-Hispanic whites “Reading on the Web” Rate it much higher than non-Hispanic whites GOAL: Grow Hispanic Readership: GOAL: Grow Hispanic Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC CONTENT ACTION STEP “Something to talk about.” Hard news Visual appeal Action photos African Americans: African Americans “Talk about it” higher than for any other group “Ad usefulness” rated higher than for non-Hispanic whites GOAL: Grow African American Readership: GOAL: Grow African American Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC CONTENT ACTION STEP “Something to talk about.” News about my community Who is in the story Presence in stories, photos 18-24 Year Olds: 18-24 Year Olds Advertising is key readership driver “Value for my money” is also very important Young adults are more likely to: See the newspaper as discriminating & stereotyping Rate paper as “too much” Rate experience “reading on the Web” higher than older readers 18-24 Year Olds – cont.: 18-24 Year Olds – cont. They are less likely to: Say paper gives me “something to talk about” Feel newspaper “makes me smarter” Believe it “looks out for my personal & civic” interest” GOAL: Grow 18-24 Year Old Readership: GOAL: Grow 18-24 Year Old Readership EXPERIENCE CONTENT SATISFACTION CONTENT TACTIC CONTENT ACTION STEP “Something to talk about.” Ads about “go and do” Image ads Narrative style ads Types of journalism: Types of journalism Typology by Rosenstiel and Kovach Journalism of verification Journalism of assertion Journalism of affirmation The “blogosphere” Journalism of analysis Journalism of Verification: Journalism of Verification Traditional American model, the MSM “If your mother says she loves you check it out” Build on facts first Separate fact from opinion Independent from any factions Most newspapers, local TV, NPR Expensive, reporter based Failures of execution make it vulnerable Journalism of Assertion: Journalism of Assertion The press as conduit Much of cable news, talk shows “Booker” and host-based, cheaper No fact checking Often conflict oriented Speed and 24 hour news cycle encourage this type of journalism Journalism of Affirmation: Journalism of Affirmation Designed to reinforce preconceptions Affinity based Sometimes verification, sometimes assertive, whichever serves the more general purpose Much of Fox, talk radio, some of MSNBC, some internet and Blogs The Blogosphere: The Blogosphere Adds new dimension to culture of Assertion Publish first, and let the verification process occur afterwards in the response Every co-respondent is presumed part of the verification process We Media: Journalism as Open Dialogue not prepared lecture Journalism of Analysis: Journalism of Analysis This is traditional opinion journalism The Economist, Nation, New Republic, National Review It presumes itself a second source It does operate as a primary news deliverer News that has real value: News that has real value Sense-making news Things no one else reports upon Uncovering things – be a watchdog Create a local forum Deepen your community role – extend the brand on the Web Sense-making news: Sense-making news Requires real thinking – newsroom as a place of intellectual debate and thinking News that helps readers figure out what to believe, that brings order to events, that makes the tumblers click Example: How do the rich get richer? WSJournal series on back-dating of stock options – winner of Pulitzer gold medal. Things no one else does: Things no one else does Your strongest position – you have the boots on the ground Can be the zoning board, the county commission Things that are in the newspaper that aren’t anywhere else. There will be pressure to reduce that. Beware the fallacy of 30 percent. If you stop covering stuff that attracts less than 30 percent of your audience, you erode the total audience. Uncovering things: Uncovering things The watchdog role There’s faux watchdog reporting out there (Yogurt contains bacteria!!! Film at 11!) Discovering things that are unknown and wouldn’t be known without you. Expensive, difficult, time-consuming The local forum: The local forum Craig’s list can create a commercial forum, but a newspaper’s values create an ideas/opinions forum You’re the only place for a forum focused on just your community Web gives you new tools for letting everyone participate in the forum Identify your deeper role: Identify your deeper role Expand that role on the Web Identify your unique personality, your unique function Deepen and extend the brand on the Web Alternative story forms: Alternative story forms Q&A Chunkification of stories Charticles Graphicles Exploded stories Grids Alternative story forms: Alternative story forms Q&A Chunkification of stories Charticles Graphicles Exploded stories Grids Writing for the Web: Writing for the Web “Writing for the Web,” by Mark Briggs How to become a digital journalist How to report a news story online Questions? Comments?: Questions? Comments?