Friday, February 01, 2008

Why Newspapers will see off TV

I didn't choose the title of the talk, but it resonates nonetheless and is worthy of a robust look.

The media landscape's levelling, video and multimedia's prominance amongst media companies period, has produced a new beginning.

There are no formal custodians of video news any longer, but whilst broadcasters may have lost the upperhand, at least on the web, we rarely talk about great writings from broadcasters in the same way we do for print journalists.

Newspapers haven't lost their fight; no, online they' re cocksure for a new one on broadcasters' territory.

"Why newspapers will see off TV" is the stuff of alchemy; a polemic of sorts in which the empirical evidence gathered to make that claim is on shifting sand, certainly against the back drop of diminishing influence and circulation on the newspapers on the stands.

And frankly, given our entrenched psyche, our prediliction to TV as much as paper, it's difficult to write any one of them off.

If you were a betting person in this frenzied media storm, you'd need more than a strong poker face to place your bet on the presumption.

Newspaper Video
But when we cast around, look at the alpha models of newspapers presenting video, they present a strong case.

I have been watching Obama on the New York Times; a catalogue of diariased news reports where I can choose at will any video.

Somewhere within the body of the NYT are strong articles, a showcase of the best Word- smiths wooing audiences.

Elsewhere, there are any number of slideshows experimenting with form and function.

The Times in London explores the use of different web editions, while the FT reports an upturn in profits since the use of video.

These might be anecdotal, but to broadcasters represent a clear and present threat to their news and television.

It won't be lost on many journalist that when broadcasters needed to tool up, shore up their practices, strengthen their news hands, they dip, often raided the floor of newspapers.

Utopian journalist Andrew Marr's autobiographical account of his training days is among a long line of books that illustrates broadcaster's penchant for wooing newspaper journalist.

Why because of their nuanced writings. Broadcasters taught us to keep it simple, so sometimes simple.

It was in the air and then gone. No way to rewind so keep the language simple.

But online we can rewind and viewers are searching for that distinctiveness.

British superblogger Andy Dickinson echoed a point made to the BBC's Peter Horrocks about impartiality and biased writings that give newspapers the edge.

Then there's the others; print journalists invariably have their own body of contacts, can work alone, and can eke out a story via primary sources.

It is more often the case that newspaper writers turn to TV, than TV journalists getting a a large shoe-in as newspaper writers.

New Rules in Newspaper Video
The rules of video are also being redefined.

Slanted reportage, fair perhaps, but with a political bent is providing much succour for those who may have tired of the neutrality of news from within broadcasting.

From the coats of videojournalism, we discover newspaper journalism is better tailored to this new maturing discipline.

The new newspaper journalists writes with his camera as he did with his pen, not confined to styles and templates, time and 6'Oclock bulletins.

News happens all the time, and newspapers are validating that, finding fresh ways of cross promotion, making the web feel more dynamic as a breakling news medium.

Of course newspapers aren't home and dry.

Having had to reinvent themselves in the 50s/ 60s with TV's arrival, previously with radio and then with 24 hour TV News, they have become by Darwnism default much used to change.

They have become accustomed to responding; those that haven't tell a different story entirely within the Microfiche of dusty libraries.

Today, the Telegraph's hub has become a model for others. The Times' new look a breath of fresh design air, and more and more newspapers are embracing video.

Distinctiveness, longer format programmes, video-hyperlinked stories, more and more multimedia features will become the norm.

And what's knitting this new paradigm together - old fashioned good journalism that will never go away and the new derivative: video.


David will be giving a performance lecture at Staatskanzlei (State Chancellery) in Erfurt, in the residence of the Prime Minister of the State of Thuringia, next month.

1 comment:

Lenslinger said...