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The future of journalism

We all know that traditional forms of journalism are slowly declining, with the increase of many new media platforms. Does this mean, however, that journalism itself is on the way out as well? In an interview with David Carr from the New York Times, he looked at where he thinks the future of journalism is heading, and suggests that maybe it’s future isn’t as bleak as we all might think.

Carr believes that in previous decades, the amount of information and resources that journalists had access to was very minimal compared to what they have available now. Andy Lack, from Bloomberg Media, was also in the conversation, where he stated, in regards to consumers, ‘The amount of things they can do, see, access, read, think about, watch… we didn’t quite have that diversity’. Journalism is seen to be evolving and changing in many ways, which I think reflects a positive outcome for the industry (Boston University, 2014).

In a recent TED Talk, Tom Rosenstiel, the Director of the American Press Institute, also discussed this notion of new media and user generated content and what it means for the future of journalism. He believes that ‘people have access to more news’ and that ‘the audience will determine the future of news’. This implies that people no longer need to access news via traditional means, such as newspapers. An important point that Rosenstiel had was that, ‘Today news is on demand; we can get the news we want, when we want it. We are in control of our own learning’. This was not something that was accessible to consumers before; this is a new and ever changing concept, which I think makes this industry even more thriving and exciting (TEDx Talks, 2013).

Both these clips showed valuable insights into the future of journalism in similar, yet different ways. The journalism industry is evolving in more ways than we know, and faster than anyone can keep up. This may mean that traditional forms of media are declining; yes. However I don’t think it means the industry itself is declining, I just think we need to learn to keep up and progress with it in order for the industry to succeed.

References

Boston University 2014, NYT’s David Carr on the Future of Journalism, online video, 6 March, Boston University, viewed 18 March 2014, <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPlazqH0TdA>

TEDx Talks 2013, The Future of Journalism: Tom Rosenstiel at TEDxAtlanta, online video, 28 May, TEDx, viewed 18 March 2014, <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuBE_dP900Y>

Public media spaces and aesthetic journalism

The relationship between journalism and art is strong and somewhat confusing. Cramerotti (2011) describes aesthetic journalism as ‘artistic practices in the form of investigation of social, cultural or political circumstances’ (p. 21). The interaction between aesthetics and journalism is very common. Journalism not only focuses on mediating and reporting on a story, however engaging in the aesthetics by means of photos, videos etc. that provide them with a sense of witnessing an unmediated account as well (p. 21). The current evolution of new media platforms has not only changed the ways in which we access media, however, also involves how the audience can communicate and engage with each other on many different levels.

Cramerotti states the ‘the process leading up to aesthetic journalism can be considered from both perspectives: as art being absorbed by the generalist media industry, or as journalism becoming a (common) art form’ (p. 32). The proliferation in contemporary art exhibitions of works resembling news reports, documentary cinema and informative publications is a perfect example of how aesthetic journalism is portrayed in our world today.

Aesthetic journalism is not only limited to the art world. It can be found in documentaries, reality TV, blogs and even in advertising. I found this particularly interesting, especially because I am majoring in advertising and marketing, I had never realised this aspect of it. According to Cramerotti, advertising and art are very similar; in the way they use stories and experiences to communicate information. They both look at ideas of change and focus on a core message, either through the advertisement and an artwork.

Aesthetic journalism is a very interesting topic within media studies, and both artists and journalists make use of aesthetics and are well aware of it within their work.

References
Cramerotti, Alfredo, 2011, “What is Aesthetic Journalism,” in Cramerotti, Alfredo, Aesthetic Journalism: How to Inform Without Informing, Intellect, London