Technological convergence and the demand for the most efficient, quickest media have caused mass media, and journalism in particular, to shift towards multi-media and digital media form. Mass media employees must be willing and able to embrace this new technological demand and utilize all forms of digital media to release and interpret information to the community at large. Therefore, it is essential that preparation for a career in communications, especially in news journalism, be based on the new roles of technology and digital media in mass communications.
Journalism at one time focused on short term and long-term print media and newscast. It may have focused on planning news stories for tomorrow’s paper or tonight’s newscast. With all information being available at all times in so many channels (24/7 TV news, on-line news, social media sources, etc.), journalism must now focus on channeling information to all sources quickly and correctly and enhance the point of views of the content. “The new journalist needs to learn and understand how news and information works in a digital world, instead of simply applying established norms and practices that may no longer be effective” (http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2010/07/rethinking-the-role-of-the-journalist-in-the-participatory-age190.html). Gone are the days of citizens waiting until the 6 AM paper for a news story about a homicide at 7 PM the night before, when the information is available instantly.
Journalists were once a commodity form of spreading information because of their control over it. With all advances in personal media devices and social media connections, everyone has the potential to discover, organize, and distribute information across a variety of channels. “One example is the ability of the audience to report and distribute the news in photographs, videos, and text, which undermines the monopoly on reporting that journalists traditionally enjoyed” (http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2010/07/rethinking-the-role-of-the-journalist-in-the-participatory-age190.html). This, as discussed on the last exam, makes social media primarily mass communication and makes the role of the journalist competitive with the everyday citizens’.
I think if journalists don’t embrace technological convergence and digital media, their jobs may become reassigned to employees who do and are able to focus on channeling information in the digital world. Sponsors and advertisers pay to reach their audience as efficiently as possible.
Technology—TV, print media, computer, radio
Audience—all news readers