Journalism online
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Journalism online. The World Wide Web, the past, the present, the future. It used to be …. We had three TV networks We had broadcast radio We had newspapers We had magazines Later on … Cable television. Along came the 1990s ….

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Journalism online

Journalism online

The World Wide Web, the past, the present, the future

It used to be

It used to be …

  • We had three TV networks

  • We had broadcast radio

  • We had newspapers

  • We had magazines

  • Later on …

  • Cable television

Along came the 1990s

Along came the 1990s …

  • Early 1990s, the Internet starts to gain popularity among the general public.

  • At first, sort of a high-tech telegraph. People used it for email, to talk to others in chat rooms, AOL …

Since then

Since then

  • We’ve seen an explosion in information, the amount of it available at the click of a button, and the creativity in expressing ourselves in the digital realm.

  • Social networking, music and video file sharing, blogs, YouTube.

  • A revolution in communication

Traditional media and the net

Traditional media and the ‘net

  • Traditional media sources have gone through a number of approaches with the World Wide Web- Ignore it- Dip a toe in- Dive in

  • Do their approaches make sense?

How do we use media today

How do we use media today?

  • What sources of information do you use?

  • Your parents?

  • Your grandparents?

Where are we going

Where are we going?

  • The rate of change and evolution with information dissemination is quite rapid right now.

  • What is popular today may not be popular six months from now. Something else may be the rage.

Scary and exciting

Scary and exciting

  • Rapid change is both scary and exciting for those who work in media.

  • Offers opportunities for creativity with new products and new forms of expression.

Traditional media vs online

Traditional media vs. online

  • Traditional media: Two dimensional

  • Online: Three dimensional

  • Many of the tools, practices and principles we’ve used in the past translate well to the Web.- Inverted pyramid- Broadcast techniques- The line is blurred between traditional print, broadcast

Characteristics of the web

Characteristics of the Web

  • Immediacy

  • Flexibility

  • Permanency

  • Capacity

  • Interactivity



  • Content is easier to go with immediately online than in print or broadcast.

  • Audience can receive instant alerts.

  • Costs to place information online quickly are cheaper than traditional.

  • Audiences now accustomed to the immediate dissemination of information online.



  • Web allows for much greater creativity with how info is presented. The story can be relayed more effectively:- Story, video, audio, q and a interview, slideshow, graphics (interactive?), Web chat, blogs, comments, on and on



  • Web offers not only easy access, but easy permanent access to info.

  • No paper, tape, etc. to maintain. It’s there and available all the time.

  • Or is it? Is it permanent information if it can be fundamentally altered/removed/changed?

  • Transparency.



  • News organizations can enhance their traditional products with Web-only.

  • Provides an outlet for viewers and readers who want a more in-depth experience with a report.

  • Allows those who want to explore more about a topic to do that without seeking out large quantities of physical information.



  • 2-D traditional vs. 3-D Web media

  • Audience members can pick and choose what they want to experience.

  • More connection opportunities for content producers with the audience.

  • Allows site hosts to track popularity of certain topics. Helps with audience appeal, advertising.



  • With interactivity, quality sites will provide links to allow readers who are interested in a topic explore more about that topic.

  • Links may also provide audience a chance to see previous articles on the same subject.

Old techniques that work

Old techniques that work

  • Inverted pyramid style, concise and efficient writing, and lists of info are all traditional media techniques that translate well to the Web.

  • Why?

Visuals writing the web

Visuals, writing, the Web

  • We are a very visual society. You need to remember this when writing.

  • Short paragraphs.

  • Varied length of sentences and paragraphs.

  • Bullets, bold words.

  • Italics – use sparingly, and only a couple words. No long paragraphs of italics.



  • During a Web search, what turns up?

  • Headlines: Traditional vs. online.

  • Clear, specific, to the point headlines on your stories.

  • Headlines are not there to tell the whole story. Rather, think of them like an advertisement for or a hint at what the reader will find in the story.

Summaries intros points

Summaries, intros, points

  • Some Web sites use short story summaries in conjunction with the headlines.- Kind of like inverted pyramid leads.

  • Intros: Often, videos are accompanied by a couple paragraphs.

  • Points: Sometimes, stories are displayed with a few main topics/points.

The more you know

The more you know …

  • It used to be that journalists focused on being real good at specific skills:- Writing- Copy editing- Design and graphics- Photography

  • These roles still exist. But the lines are often blurred now.- The more varied skills you offer, the more valuable you are to an employer.

More but more creative

More, but more creative

  • Being skilled in more areas allows content producers to be able to pick and choose the best ways to inform the audience.

  • Story, slideshow, audio report, graphic – all produced by the same person.

The web

The Web

  • Offers immediacy, interactivity, and opportunities for creativity that we didn’t have before.

  • Audience expects participation.

  • Emphasizes speed of information like never before.

  • There’s much more information out there than ever before, which means …



  • New media products are joining the traditional sources/brands all the time.

  • Those that do the job the best will succeed. Those who attract an interested, audience that returns again and again will really succeed.

  • Rapid change can be scary, but it is also exciting.



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