Social Media and Web Journalism

If you haven’t already, check out today’s Detroit Free Press article by Patricia Montemurri on a “web journalism pioneer,” Huffington Post’s Arianna Huffington.

 Today, Wednesday Oct. 13, is Journalism Day at St. Andrews Hall on Wayne State’s main campus. For most of us who are PR and journalism majors, this is an opportunity we should all use to our advantage.

For those of us who are seeking a future in media, this is the chance to “get your foot in the door.” BUT, today does not seal your career. There is still a lot of tough work ahead that is needed to become successful, especially entering a field – journalism – that has been experiencing a decline.

In order to succeed, we have to ready ourselves for technology’s change. Huffington told the Free Press that “the future of journalism is hybrid. I think it’s very important to recognize that there’s a re-convergence happening between traditional journalism and online journalism.”

Huffington’s view on social media is that it gives a voice to those who wouldn’t normally have one. “We have used social media to make sure that our readers don’t just consume news. They share it, add to it, develop it,” she said. The new age of public relations isn’t simply sending press release after press release. As future practitioners, we will most likely be accepting a position that utilizes the strengths of social media to publicize.

However, the education is up to us. At this point, WSU does not offer a class specifically dedicated to social media. We discuss the importance and usage throughout our courses but do not indulge on the “how to.” It is this inherent skill we must possess that differentiates us in an oversaturated job market.

As writers, there are many days when we feel – or know – that print media is out the door. However, if we can adapt to the changes in technology, become experts with social media and contribute to a successful blog then we will prove ourselves marketable as a web journalist or PR expert.

Also, check out Arianna Huffington today from 3:30-5 p.m. at the DIA. She will discuss “Third World America,” which is sponsored by Wayne State University Forum on Contemporary Issues in Society. The event is FREE but is suggested you register at http://focis.wayne.edu.

Post by Thomas Roy, VP of Communications Wayne State PRSSA

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One response to “Social Media and Web Journalism

  1. For further reading pertaining to the rise of new media, I recommend Ben McGrath’s feature in this week’s edition of The New Yorker (“Search and Destroy,” October 18th). The article is a profile of Nick Denton, founder of Gawker Media – which oversees tech blog Gizmodo, among others. It also touches on issues relating to the “re-convergence happening between traditional journalism and online journalism” that Huffington mentioned in the Free Press feature.

    A side note: the cover art to this week’s edition is hilarious – probably the best one I’ve seen in a long time.

    -Greg

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