Our editors & readers talk
Think back a century and news needs and news methods were completely different.
Just think that the first airmail flight between Britain and Hong Kong did not land until 1936. And yet today at my home in London I get a rich and vibrant stream of news, photographs, stories and gossip from Asia into my home via Twitter, Facebook, Google Reader and then all the more long-established methods of journalism. It is a cornucopia.
But the problem with any over-flowing horn is that it is really only scarcity that creates the awareness of value.
And in fact, the profession of journalism is losing both value and respect.
The latest Gallup poll showed a record-high 57% of Americans saying they had little or no trust in the mass media to do what the media has always proclaimed to be its primary mission – to report fully, accurately and fairly.
Instead people look to the friends – their community – for information, for validation, for argument and for illumination.
from For the Record:
The rise of social media has brought journalists some powerful new storytelling and information-gathering tools. However, with these new opportunities have come some new risks.
At Reuters, we have just published some social media guidelines that lay out some basic principles and offer recommendations that should prove useful as journalists navigate what can sometimes seem a chaotic landscape.
The following speech was given at the Association of Online Publishers conference in London on October 7. Chris Cramer is Reuters Global Editor, Multimedia.
As early as the 12th century, the image of dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants came into discourse to mean that all knowledge advances based on the discoveries of the past.
On May 29th, James Coleman of Bristol smacked his skull on a tree branch while filing updates to the Twitter service (or tweeting) from his Blackberry during a run. His accident spawned a new word: a “Twinjury”.
from Mark Jones:
I spent last week at the World Economic Forum in Davos producing content for reuters.com, running some experiments in new ways to cover a conference, and observing the growing integration of social media into a major mainstream event.
We had great success with giving our correspondents ‘Flip cameras’ with which to grab short comments from delegates on the key issues of the Forum. You can see some of these on our ‘Davos debates’ on the economy, financial regulation, environment, and ethics. The major learning point was that these were much, much easier to use than the mobile phones we used last year in Davos.
A little girl in my family got a typewriter for Christmas.
Not a laptop. Nothing with a screen. A typewriter. The old-fashioned manual kind with a smeary ribbon and keys that stick.
I was in Cape Cod last week to talk about social media – blogs and social networks and all that — at Hubbard One’s ‘Innovation Forum’. (Hubbard One is a Thomson Reuters company providing website services to law firms.) When first invited I had reservations. I know very little about the legal profession and, while I try not to take this personally, my lawyer friends are openly contemptuous of the media and reserve particular scorn for bloggers. But the organisers said not to worry — they needed someone with “out of industry experience who could stimulate new thinking”. Perhaps sensing my scepticism they added that the guest speaker a few years ago had been a chef.
On the plane from London I was still worrying about how to engage the lawyers (or were they attorneys?) and increasingly discomforted about the idea of following the chef, who by this point had become in my mind a natural entertainer with a slick live show almost certainly involving dramatic knife-work. But then I stumbled across a line in the book I was reading (Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li’s excellent ‘Groundswell’) suggesting that all companies were now media companies since they have to manage complex information flows to both their staff and to customers, and this seemed to offer some hope.
Thomson Reuters hosted a speech by the British Prime Minister in London on Monday and we opened up the event to the Web with the help of two advisors — documentary maker Christian Payne and social media guru Mike Atherton.
These two have helped politicians, business people and even a Hollywood studio to connect with online audiences. Our event perhaps lacked a bit of Hollywood glamour but we had business people and politics in spades and we gave Christian and Mike full access to cover the event as they saw fit.