Slow Media Movement

The recent trend of consuming local produce is not just true of food. We are learning to seek out regional goods in grocery stores, shop more at farmers’ markets, and this awareness is reflected in our consumption of local media.

Everyone knows print newspapers are on their way out — they simply cannot compete with the immediacy and accessibility of online news. But many believe the dominance of e-news accompanies the resurgence of locally oriented publications. “Community journalism” sources like The Sacramento Press covers “hyperlocal” stories that The Bee would never get around to, and the community is responding positively.

Glossy magazines are suffering the same fate as newspapers, according to this article, with many going out of print. Localism will prevail, though, if small-time rags like Midtown Monthly and Sactown continue to succeed. I’m probably not alone in having more respect for those publications than for Playgirl and Teen Magazine (RIP).

This other article claims music is coming to a dead end. “The bigger the audience gets the more the ‘message’ has to be watered down,” so the answer is simple: Intimate audiences are optimal, organic. The author insists people only want to listen to old music since new music isn’t evolving, but some local musicians are currently making the most innovative and engaging music I’ve ever heard. Who needs the music industry?

All these shifts toward localism are welcome and necessary. I don’t think the term “slow media” will catch on, but the idea certainly will.


November 30, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . journalism, music. 1 comment.

Journalism of the Future

Art by Josiah of the Future

According to The State of the News Media‘s 2009 Online Journalist Survey, we journalism students have some things to worry about. Not only is the format of our chosen area of study changing from paper to web, but apparently our journalistic ethics and values are changing, too.

The survey polled employees of the Online News Association and found that 45 percent believe journalism is heading on “the right track.” The 54 percent who said we’re on the wrong track had better just hop off now, because the future of journalism is what it is. There is only one track. We cannot reverse the advancements in technology that have lead us to this age of digital media. We cannot ignore the fact that the internet is the most accessible medium to our generation, a generation of (hopeful) future journalists.

As for our ethics changing — mostly for the worse, according to the survey — an expected decline in accuracy is the trade-off for faster breaking news, a greater array of voices heard and the potential for interactive, multimedia coverage. There have always been inaccuracies in the news, but there has never been so much opportunity for future writers, reporters, photographers, artists, designers, web techs, on and on and on.

However, all these wonderful progressions cannot happen without revenue. The survey shows that only 61 percent of news websites are making a profit. I guess it is what it is.

October 29, 2009. Tags: , , , , . journalism. Leave a comment.