A Digital Journalism Roundup

Digital Publishing in Multiple Languages

Dmitry Shishkin of the BBC World Service has been writing for Media Shift about Multilingual Digital Publishing for BBC News. In the piece he shares lessons he has learned about product and format scalability and the mobile revolution. Shishkin says running a ‘portfolio of 28 digital entities’, means that prioritization is a constant mantra as they look at each individual audiences primary requirements. He explains that the World Service has been largely running a mobile first strategy for many years (as they reach out to countries where desktop computers are in short supply), and must be masters of a social strategy that can reformat easily from one language into another.

What Makes a Good Digital Journalist?

Michele McLellan of the Knight Digital Media Centre has been expanding on an original blog by Jay Rosen of Pressthink about the skills needed to be a successful journalist in a digital world.

Both writers agree that news companies need journalists who can do more than write a good story, and technologists who can do more than build a good digital format. McLellan describes the work that the Knight Centre has been doing in training journalists for work in multiplatform newsrooms, which shows an emphasis on understanding platforms and story forms and how consumers access the news, forming a strategy and analysing and acting on digital metrics. >In his post, Rosen asks what the new skill set should be called. We have called it “digital literacy,” for lack of a better term. I am not sure that really captures the sweep and depth of what is now required to be a successful journalist on digital platforms. Whatever we call the skill set, it ought to be a central focus for journalism organizations and educators as well as journalists who want to stay in the business.

Journalism Needs a Taylor Swift

In the wake of Taylor Swifts victorious influence over Apple (in their recent U-turn over royalties from their Apple Music streaming service), an admiring Jane Martinson of the Guardian asks ‘Where is the Taylor Swift of news to force tech companies to pay up?’.

However, whilst news may not be harnessing the power of celebrity to the same extent that music is able to do Martinson does see some hope that change is on the way. >Even Martin Sorrell, that great proselytiser for the media companies such as Vice which he owns a stake in, suggested that the desire to read all about it could help “traditional media companies”. “The pendulum has swung back a bit towards traditional newspapers,” he said. “People realise that they have more power than they’ve been given credit for.” Which all might help to explain why so many technology companies which have long denied any interest in becoming “media” companies are now busily appointing their own editors. Apple has started recruiting journalists, while Snapchat is hiring a “content analyst – politics and news” to curate messages ahead of the 2016 presidential race.