The student news site of Indiana University Southeast

The Horizon

The student news site of Indiana University Southeast

The Horizon

The student news site of Indiana University Southeast

The Horizon

Journalism alive, well

This summer I spent time pondering my two favorite questions: Who killed John F. Kennedy and is journalism dead?

I’ll start with the easy one – Oswald. Lee Harvey Oswald killed Kennedy, and he acted alone.

Don’t believe me? Read Vincent Bugliosi’s “Reclaiming History.”

Now, the second question – Journalism is alive and well, thank you very much.

Every day we are bombarded with information. We need people who can sift through the information, pull out the good information and turn it into a form we can all understand. That’s where journalists come in.

Pundits have been predicting the end of newspapers, magazines and radio for years. They now target network television, too. These media are not going anywhere. They are just going to change, evolve.

Pundits point to craigslist and bloggers as the “future” of journalism.

Craigslist will change how newspapers deal with classified ads, but classified ads are not going to disappear. Classified ads still bring in $1.1 billion, according to Information Week.

Not all bloggers are journalists. Let me repeat that: not all bloggers are journalists.

Here’s the big difference – journalists do original reporting while bloggers tend to write opinion or gossip, propped up by a quick Google search for supporting evidence.

Bloggers believe they don’t need to be balanced or factual.

The bloggers who do, do original reporting are journalists. The rest are just letting us read their diaries.

Blogs have had a positive influence on journalism already. They have helped design, deadlines and formats evolve.

Blogs are designed with the most recent information on the top. If you go to news Web sites, they do the same now. The most important information is still displayed prominently, but newer information is at the top, too.

Every minute is now a deadline. When a story is done, it goes up on the Web. There is no longer any need to wait for a single deadline to publish. You may need to wait for the traditionally formatted news, but the Web allows more immediate distribution.

Journalists can now tell the story in the most appropriate format. Is the best way to tell the story through photographs? Publish a slide show on the Web site. Is a video better? Put the video up on the Web. Is the written story still the best way to reach the audience? Put it out there and get immediate feedback, too, through the Web.

The Horizon will be taking this approach. We will be uploading stories – in a variety of formats – to our Web site as soon as the stories are ready. Check it out at homepages.ius.edu/horizon.

We will still be putting out our award-winning newspaper and our online newscast, now called The Horizon Newscast, every week. As journalism evolves, so will The Horizon.

By RON Allman
Horizon Adviser
Associate Professor
rallman@ius.edu

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