Media technology

Charging journalists with digital media technology in the 21st century – New Telegraph


The word “media” means so many things in this 21st century, it varies from mass media to news media, and from traditional media to various emerging forms of digital media. Before the advent of the digital age, the most popular forms of media were what we now call analog or traditional media: radio, newspapers, magazines, billboards, journals, etc. Since then, the technological revolution has brought with it many new types of media that now play a major role in delivering information and entertainment to people around the world. In fact, digital media has taken over almost every aspect of media practice.

In summary, digital media is a mixture of technology and content. However, the creation of digital media products requires teams of professionals with diverse skills, including technical skills, artistic skills, analytical and production coordination skills. All of these skills should be balanced within a team, with all team members focused on creating the best user experience. Digital media products can be found in a diverse range, such as e-commerce, games (console, online and mobile), websites and mobile applications, animation, social media, video, reality augmented reality, virtual reality, data visualizations, interactive storytelling and many more.

However, the benefits of digital media cannot be overstated, according to the World Economic Forum, digital media has improved the sharing of information across the world, giving people much wider access to facts, figures, statistics and enabling information to flow much faster. This not only allows people to react in real time as events unfold, but also helps expose political corruption and unfair business practices. Furthermore, the digitization of content and data, as well as new digital communication technologies, have opened up a wider range of opportunities to know where, when, how and by whom work is done.

However, this changes the nature of the employment relationship. Many jobs can now be done anywhere, anytime, thanks to the availability of digital data, high-speed internet, and better messaging, audio, and video technology.

There’s no denying that the way society consumes information and content has changed dramatically over the past decade. Never in the history of mankind have we been so connected, which speaks to the benefits of an exciting new digital age. The Internet allows people to connect with themselves anywhere in the world in seconds; smartphones are supercomputers with high definition video capabilities in our pockets. Journalists no longer need to wait for newspapers to print to see their stories, but instead utilize the ability to write, record and distribute instantly. With this development, a modern journalist must be able to communicate effectively in the digital age, in the last two decades technology has triggered seismic changes in journalism.

Three main developments have evolved: the Internet, mobile devices and social media. Together they have changed the accessibility, creation and distribution of journalism. Today, adults and young people are connecting to the Internet and social media through a digital device.

Their intensive use makes it easy to forget that these technologies are relatively new in our daily lives. Journalists must therefore master both digital media and the basics of journalism. Media practitioners must continue to develop their interviewing skills to meet modern practices, as it is one of the most vital skills in journalism. It helps journalists develop reliable, accurate and impactful storytelling. Additionally, modern journalists need skills to identify, observe, gather, assess, record and share relevant information.

They must report with empathy and compassion, conduct thorough journalistic research and assess information appropriate to their media. Writing is another fundamental journalistic skill journalists need to develop, they must master written communication for all types of media, from text stories and podcast scripts to photo captions and social media posts.

Journalistic skills related to writing include: understanding the principles of grammar and punctuation. Journalists must also know how to write clearly, simplify complex information and follow a style guide. The growing public preference for digital media means that digital journalism skills are now imperative. Journalists must be able to strategically use digital storytelling tools to connect with audiences on various platforms. It means thinking critically and creatively about the best forms of media to serve the target audience. These skills include: live streaming video to Twitter from a mobile device, transforming a spreadsheet of data into a responsive visualization for a website, shooting and editing video in a series of GIFs.

More often than not, journalists today must use mobile devices to connect with the public. To do this, they need mobile journalism skills to take and edit photos, record and edit audio and video, report in real time on social or traditional news channels. Content editing, however, is a necessary skill because journalists need to know how to critically evaluate their work and that of others. Editing is a necessary step in creating great journalism because it ensures accuracy and fairness. With the widespread consumption of social media as the third most common source of digital information among young and old today.

Journalists need to be able to connect with the public on these popular platforms, such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram, LinkedIn and many more. However, their reports must be in real time on the various social platforms. This involves critical and creative thinking about the most appropriate media for each platform. In summary, a modern journalist must contextualize today’s digital journalism within the best broader ideals of journalism, apply programming languages ​​to facilitate digital storytelling, demonstrate fundamental skills in photography, video, design and audio. In addition, the reporter must understand and make sense of data for news and public interest reporting, as well as reporting stories in real time via social media. He must also build his own brand as a journalist and develop, research and execute a major journalism project.

On the other hand, the government at the center must come up with enabling laws that will provide cheaper and if not free data services to subscribers. Government organizations need to design advanced data management processes that can capture and process overwhelming amounts of data and store it in a way that meets the demands of digital media. Governments at all levels need to empower and equip their workforce to adapt to the modern trend of digital media.

In Ogun State, the Dapo Abiodun has led the administration through his Office of Information Technology in engaging his staff on different baseline assessments and international certification programs to keep them abreast of the latest trends. The Head of Service, Dr. Nafiu Aigoro also said recently opened a two-day training program for information officers with the theme; “Information Management in the New World Order” to combat misconceptions that could cause chaos in society. Under his leadership, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Strategy, Alhaji Waheed Adesina, advised participants to prepare for the tasks and challenges ahead and adapt to the endless complexities of managing the information in an ever-changing world. These measures aim to bring digital technology closer to the people at their convenience, so it behooves media professionals to be prepared for the tasks ahead!

Oluwaseun Boye is an Information Officer at the Ogun State Ministry of Information and Strategy and writes via [email protected]


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