But editors and professors recognize that the best way to understand the future of journalism lies in learning from and working with students.
And so, Mercer University is starting a $5.6 million project to collaborate with the Macon Newspaper and Georgia Public Radio.
via The New York Times:
Reporters and editors for the 186-year-old paper The Telegraph and the radio station will work out of the campus’s new journalism center, alongside students whom the university expects will do legwork for newspaper and public radio reports, with guidance from their professors and working journalists.
It’s a plan born in part of desperation. Like many newspapers, The Telegraph has lost circulation and advertising revenue in the last decade, and the public radio station was forced to trim down to one staff member during the recession.
William D. Underwood, Mercer’s president, expects that by applying what he calls a medical residency model to journalism, all of these players may give the struggling industry a chance to stay alive.
Bonus: This report [PDF] from the New America Foundation entitled “Shaping 21st Century Journalism: Leveraging a ‘Teaching Hospital Model’ in Journalism Education”
When I worked on the Kosovo Special Report on BBC News Online in 1998, there were 3 of us in the team. I handled what we’d now call the data journalism of updating the daily record of allied bombings. But if social media had been around I could have corroborated those stories – I could have shown pictures of schools bombed-out when Nato said it was an armoury. However, this also highlights the issue of scale again: with twitter, facebook and youtube – and the need for broadcasters’ representatives to reside in the online community so that you can know the reputation and reliability of a source, or to use mass-corroboration as your principle – you need resource, huge resource, to be able to effectively operate as a broadcast journalist body. It’s a manpower challenge.
Blogging platforms virtually did away with any idea of the front page and instead brought the reader right to the latest entry from the author or team of authors.
Most new media companies didn’t spend the money to build the kind of editing infrastructure that is needed to create a consistent personality. It’s the constant back-and-forth between several top editors or producers that results in a unified and consistent message. All reporters benefit from discussions with editors because it helps the reporter to understand the vision for the story and the expectations the readers are likely to have for it.
And all readers benefit from a media product that has been put together with thought and debate. It’s the difference between plain food and food cooked with a terrific sauce … a secret sauce.