Written by Ryan Thornburg January 12, 2010 8:24 am EST
Monday kicked off a new semester, and I started by challenging the students in my online news production class with this statement: News organizations should not have a Web site.
The statement picks up on a session I led at last summer’s N.C. Press Association’s Newspaper Academy. In a time of tight budgets, news organizations must be focused on delivering their core product, service or experience. Everything they do must be justified — including having a Web site. Unless a news organization can clearly state why they have an online presence, they should drop it.
The students’ responses focused on the Web as a platform for competing on breaking news and for reaching audiences — especially young people — where they are. My goal for the semester is to help them see that online journalism is a wonderful tool for telling more memorable and relevant news stories, and not just about 24/7 distribution.
- Examples of UNC’s Online Student Journalism
- A Lab for ‘The Reconstruction of American Journalism’
- Online Class Discussions and Twittering Breaking News
- How to Plan an Online News Project
- Lecture: The Online News Audience