The following is a summary for my class, Reporting for Converged Newsrooms. This is also a test of how to indent paragraphs on WordPress, which is proving to be difficult.
In chapter 5 of Principles of Convergent Journalism, the discussion of “repurposing” content for various news mediums (that is, from print or broadcast to the Internet) focuses on not just the technical side of transferring news to the web, but also the practical and aesthetic sides.
One of the main points was that the journalist must be able to discern what is a good story for the internet medium, and what would be better suited as a broadcast or print story. In many cases, the same story can be packaged to work for all mediums: rapid updates via social media or SMS as a news event unfolds, with complete coverage and analysis at an appointed broadcasting time. The chapter used the example of a high-profile murder trial to illustrate this: the station sends out constant updates as the trial closes as the verdict is handed down, while the reporter is able to collect reaction interviews and other information to put together the story for the afternoon broadcast.
Another important point was that the way people take in news has changed dramatically with the rise of the internet. Now, rather than just take in the news in the form of reading or watching television, people want to DO something with it. As such, news tailored to go online needs to be presented in a more hands-on package, whether through imbedded links to related material, a slideshow, a graphic related to the story, or some other device.
Speed and frequency was touched on, as well as the issue of “multiple versions of the same story”. Certain types of news–a breaking event, a weather-related disaster, and sports–were items identified as needing frequent and consistent updates on a news website (this falls in line with the idea that if it’s important enough to interrupt scheduled programming on television, it’s important enough to put in a place of prominence on your website). For regular news, though, the best updating method to follow seems to be, as the chapter says on page 86, “as common sense and time allow.”