The Changing field of Journalism

One of the really cool things happening in the world today is the change in journalism. A lot of people thinking journalism is dying – or at least professors think people think journalism is dying. It is brought up in almost every one of my classes, as all of us aspiring journalists plan on entering the work force in just a few short years.

But journalism is not dying. I attended a conference yesterday where the guest speaker, Bill Seitzler, said that there is still a need and a want for information, and there probably always will be. The form that the information is presented in and the method at which the information is delivered by may be changing, the the information and the need for information is not.

If you know anything about traditional newspapers, you know that the news and the advertising departments are kept separate, or are supposed to be kept separate. You don’t want a journalist writing about a company or person, just because they are giving money to the newspaper.
Today, we see more and more news places integrating the journalism and advertising departments. Journalists realize that without advertisements, our business could not afford to run. One of my professors this semester calls this “Building the brand.” Journalists still do not want to write bias articles based on who advertises with a company, but we are starting to realize that advertisements and advertisers play an important role in journalism.

The type of news that is reported is changing. Hard news is still covered: investigative news, courts, police stories, obituaries. But much more entertainment and cultural news is now being reported. I think this is a great thing because it opens the audience up to so many more people, including younger people. News is often thought of as something older people watch, or something people with more responsibilities become interested in. But providing news about the new restaurant opening or the popular musical band coming to town invites younger crowds to watch and pay attention to the news, as well.

I applied for an internship that performs many journalistic duties, but is not solely a news-gathering company. In order to get course credit for the internship, a group of faculty and staff have to vote on whether or not they believe it to be journalistic or not. I do not know what they will decide, but they may allow it to count based on all the changes going on in the field of journalism.
In order to inform and reach people, journalism has to be able to relate to them. I think it is a great thing that journalism is keeping up with the current viewpoints of what people want.