Tuesday, 31 May 2011

The Changing Face of Journalism in Digital Era

Journalism in the Digital Era
Gone are the days when people used to wait for the arrival of newspapers at their doorsteps and read newspapers with sips into their cups of tea in the morning. Morning was the time to have glimpses of the world through newspapers. In the 21st century, people have access to news even when they are on walk or move by means of digital media. Journalism in the present decade of digital media is highly competitive, more challenging and faster. The use of innovative digital communication tools in gathering, reporting, analyzing and presenting news has revolutionized the field of journalism. 

News gatheringNews gathering was a herculean task in the years before the present era of digital media. The use of miniature digital cameras has led to the demise of big team camera crews. Correspondents at the site of a breaking story or sports event transmit images from their digital cameras to editors of a newspaper organization via Internet within seconds. Wireless technology has enabled reporters to report the proceedings at court during a sensitive case hearing through SMSes from their mobile phones or emails via mobile internet to the editorial headquarters. As the tools of news gathering have become smaller and smarter, the non-stop round the clock news cycle has become the norm. 

News ReportingJournalism in the present decade of digital media runs at a cracking pace. The task of news reporting was strenuous before the introduction of digital communication tools. It required journalists to report in person to the editorial department of newspaper organizations on time. Digital media have made it possible to report on a breaking news story in real time. Now, TV journalists do live reporting from the site of a social event or road accident. The minute-to-minute updates of an event or accident, transmitted by reporters through SMSes and emails go online to provide the public with real-time news

News PresentationThe style of news presentation is a key to the growth and popularity of print media, electronics media and web media in the present age of digital communication. The immediacy and transparency of news that the modern-day digital media have brought about is increasing the impact of journalism. In this modern media age, people run and read, run and hear, run and see. Therefore, journalists of all media – print, web and electronics are under pressure to present news stories in an easier and more comprehensible way. The better the news presentation is, the more the news provider is popular. 

CompetitionIn the 21st century, going online for publicity and promotion is the latest trend. Both newspaper houses and TV news channels have gone online to widen their reach, boost their business and fuel their growth. Through social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook, they are reaching out to more and more people in a split of a second. Today’s Internet-savvy people who have nose for news remain hooked to social networking sites through their cell phones to get news updates every minute. Journalism has gained momentum due to the neck-and-neck competition between print media and electronics media in the digital era.

Journalism in the present digital age when news is combined with pictures and video clips, has posed threat to the government. Government actions and policies, whether in Washington, London or Delhi are now subjected to instant analysis and opinion polling because of real-time and round-the-clock news.  
Journalism has taken a U-turn owing to the faster and more efficient means of gathering and transmitting news across geographical barriers via Internet. At the same time, the pressure of the 24 hour news cycle, the demand for instant news coverage and the growing competition are placing core journalistic values – objectivity and accuracy at risk.


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