Will good journalism be the first casualty of the digital revolution in the media?

The revolution in digital media will not destroy good journalism, only journalism can do that.

In his book Journalism: Truth or Dare, Ian Hargreaves argues that ‘never in the history of journalism has a new medium appeared so rapidly out of the darkness and with such volatile consequences’.

For Hargreaves, it is no exaggeration to suggest that there has been a ‘digital revolution’ in the media. Huge strides in global communication mean that individuals can consume, discuss and interact with the output of news wherever and whenever they choose. Advancements in mobile technology, digital editing and satellite communication have transformed journalism into a ‘multidirectional process in a boundary-less place’. Multidirectional not only in terms of interaction with the product, but also the creation of the product itself. Continue reading

Can journalism focus too much on its audience?

The executive editor of the i newspaper, Stefano Hatfield, writes in his column this morning that since its launch late last year, it has set out to be the ‘UK’s most interactive and reader-responsive newspaper’. Feedback the paper receives, he says, regarding the placement of its crosswords and the number of sudoku’s published is taken extremely seriously and reflects how much the audience “care about all the elements that go into making i’.

The success of any British newspaper is said to come down to how well they know the people that buy their newspapers. The Daily Mail is often heralded as the king of this particular skill. One speaker at Cardiff Journalism School said recently that running through every single story, from the front page splash to the two-hundred word NIB, is a consistent theme or message that accurately captures what every Mail reader expects from the newspaper. It is the same consistency one expects in every bottle of Coca-Cola or Mars Bar bought around the world – it delivers that same taste you have come to know so well each and every time you purchase it. Continue reading

Using social media to ignite political participation

Next year is an important one in the Welsh political calender.

March sees the referendum on enhanced law making powers for the Welsh Assembly, and the Assembly elections in May will determine which political party will govern Wales through the arguably toughest four years in the Senedd’s short history.

A Social Media Senedd?

In a space of eight weeks Assembly Members from across Wales will be campaigning not only to win Senedd seats but to convince voters to turnout to decide how the Assembly makes Welsh laws, the next milestone in the Assembly’s history. Continue reading

Data Journalism: The Game – Match the speech to the Prime Minister

Using Wordle.net, I have put together (in no particular order) speeches made by three, twentieth century British, Conservative Prime Ministers:

  • Stanley Baldwin (1925)
  • Margaret Thatcher (1979)
  • David Cameron (2010)

Can you guess which speech matches the Prime Minister? Answers in the comment box below please. I shall reveal the answer shortly…

(Remember: The larger the word, the more often it was used in the speech).

Speech 1

Speech 2

Speech 3

(Images courtesy of wordle.net)

The Times must learn to share

When it comes to the debate over the future of journalism, The Times’ paywall is the only show in town.

Each week at Cardiff Journalism School a guest speaker, succesful and well-known in the realm of online journalism in one way or another, gives their take on industry’s future.

Though their interpretations may vary, the discussion always works its way towards The Times’ infamous subscription fee.

Courtesy of britishblogs.co.uk

So when Joanna Geary, Communities and also Web Development editor of the most talked about newspaper in Britain came to give her say, there was only one topic of converstation. Continue reading

Online journalism makes the industry ‘doubt itself’ says BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones


The BBC’s Technology Correspondent recalls the days of ‘the green-ink brigade’: those who would write letters to journalists giving ‘feedback’ on their content. They were seen as mad.

Now, I am not naive enough to believe that some of those people weren’t a bit odd, or that the term green-ink brigade no longer exists in newsrooms across the country.

Rory Cellan-Jones however is trying to demonstrate how,  in the not so very distant past, television and radio stations simply had no interaction with their audience. Journalists made the news, nutters wrote in to talk about it. Continue reading

RBI’s Adam Tinworth says Journalism is a Business, not an Art

A senior figure at Britain’s largest online and offline publisher Reed Business Information (RBI) has dismissed claims that there is no money to be made from online journalism as a ‘myth’.

Adam Tinworth, Editorial Development Manager of the company that owns and produces publications like New Scientist and Flight International, says that RBI is now making more money online that it is in print. Continue reading

Digitial Storytelling: not only FOR, but BY, a modern audience

Used in the right way, the internet is an invaluable tool for any working journalist across all platforms.

But though I may find online tools useful, I still don’t really find them exciting or inspiring in themselves. I cannot deny the usefulness of my microwave, but it my no means excites me. For similar reasons I have never understood the joy people take from cars and motorbikes.

So attending the third lecture in our Online series last Thursday, I braced myself for another shove towards reluctantly embracing the wealth of opportunity open to me on the web.

However, ninety minutes, and a bucket full of tears later, I had been truly inspired. Continue reading

Organisations like the BBC cannot afford to ignore their audience

Nick Robinson has admitted that he does not bother to read comments posted on his blog.

Despite writing regular posts for the BBC website and inviting the world to read them via social media sites like Twitter, the BBC’s Political Editor admits that he finds reviewing audience feedback ‘a waste of time’.

His predecessor Andrew Marr has echoed similar sentiments, branding many in the blogging community ‘inadequate, pimpled and single’. Continue reading

Interview: Shaun Custis | “There are too many f***ing Custis’ in the world”

For York Vision, found here

Vision’s Daniel Hewitt talks media power with Shaun Custis, The Sun’s Chief Sports Writer and thorn in the side of football’s elite

AS A CHIEF Football Writer of Britain’s top selling and most widely read newspaper, the influence Shaun Custis wields over the world of football means his work is read by players and managers as well as millions of football fans.

In reference to both himself and his brother, Neil, also a sports writer for The Sun, Alex Ferguson once remarked that ‘there are too many fucking Custis’ in this world’ (after Neil was mistakenly banned from Old Trafford for an article Shaun had written).

But such heated reaction comes with the territory for Sun journalists. Continue reading