In the past few years, digitalization has changed everything. From buying clothes to food, people prefer doing everything online. Digitalization has not only affected our shopping experiences but also has a significant impact on journalism.
People generally enjoy their morning tea while reading a newspaper. Now the morning tea is majorly enjoyed scrolling through the smartphone. This concludes that with the development of 3G/4G, traditional journalism is slowly fading away and making way for digital journalism.
Before talking about digital journalism, let us understand a few things about journalism.
Journalism is a collection, processing, and distribution of information related to the news to an audience. However, there are various media channels through which the new or information is circulated. Channel could be print media (newspapers and magazines), broadcast media (television and radio), and digital media (via the InternetInternet through websites and mobile applications).
Over the past 25 years, the world of journalism has witnessed radical changes, dynamically adjusting to modern trends in news‐making. The conventional understanding of journalism has changed significantly, commonly because of the way that digital media has brought new prospects to this journalistic practice.
It is always believed that traditional journalism and digital journalism have co-existed for quite a long time now.
Journalism, as a whole, has witnessed some major changes over the last twenty years. The introduction of digital technology and the dissemination of news on the internet have entirely transformed journalism. There has been a huge shift from print media to digital media as people are more inclined towards reading the content and news on their smartphones.
Digitalization has paved the way for a different kind of journalism wherein the locals take keen interest and are a part of news making. The growing popularity of the internet has made this possible.
Social media channels like YouTube and Facebook have made it easy for people to post their videos. They can easily record any event happening around them and share it with the world. Now the reader has a choice to choose from the variety of news sources available and select what is best for him instead of relying only on the limited traditional ways.
Digital journalism is quite different compared to print and broadcasting journalism. It holds the power of converting one-day news to an ongoing event through social media and various news portals.
Digital journalism entirely relies on web traffic. The success is measured through the number of visitors. Thus, journalists should have profound knowledge about the mechanism of search engines and the techniques of digital marketing. They should be competent and well aware of the usage of keywords and should know how to use them wisely. For their news to be in trends, they have to be mindful of the trending topics and various digital marketing tools. While print journalists take efforts to write headlines thoughtfully, a digital journalist will imagine more in terms of the ease of development of a story.
Print media includes detailed articles. On the contrary, articles on digital platforms are crisp. Since people do not spend much time reading, therefore the information there has to be important.
Digital journalism is an interactive platform as compared to the traditional one. It allows users to share their views and opinions via comments. So the writer can quickly change the content accordingly. People tend to get involved with the content, which sometimes makes it difficult for the journalist to control the content.
Social media plays a very crucial role in digital journalism. Nowadays, journalists try and research the topics on which they write. Mostly their source for the research is Social Media. Here they can find the most trending issue and make content out of it.
Journalists can now target a specific audience. Digital platforms have given them the option to segregate amongst their audience. Now they can quickly write an article targeting a particular group.
With the use of hashtags (#), they can even monitor the popularity of their article. Hashtags are a trend these days. Journalists also use many measuring tools to make their articles rank on digital platforms.
Digital journalism lacks the essence of authenticity. It can sometimes be deceiving and misleading. To cope up with the cut-throat competition, journalists do not validate the facts before publishing and article. To get the traffic and engagement on the article, facts are sometimes twisted and made more attractive. These stories cannot be trusted as they do not have a solid base to support. Sometimes a piece of fake news is circulated on the web, which people take seriously. This may lead to unpleasant situations. However, digital journalism has an option to alternate or correct the mistakes made. In traditional journalism, news once published cannot be altered. This has made the life of journalists much more comfortable. They can keep their articles updated based on current situation and time. While with traditional journalism, we have enough time to validate the news before printing and distributing it.
Digital journalism decreases the authority of the traditional newsroom. Everything in the digital world is so fast that a new story in the morning may become old by the afternoon. The pressure to continually keep up with the pace of changing online trends reduces the power of an editor. The decision of the author is not to be undermined, but digital journalism is more popular as it is based on skills other than just writing. A person great creating engaging content, keeping in mind the viral trends and writing a good story out of it, can be more useful than just a writer.
Our reading habits have changed drastically over time. This led to the shift of printing and broadcasting the news circulating the news online on various digital platforms. Every new invention or transformation has its benefits, but with perks comes its limitation also. It is us who have to act wisely and use our consciousness to choose what is best for ourselves and our society.
Mar 19, 2020