Sunday, April 11, 2010

CBS' Steve Kroft is worried for journalism ...

From the NYDailyNews, via TVNewser:

"There's some talented people out there ... the environment for them is much more difficult," he said. "Unfortunately, in the case of television news, I think it's true, it has nothing to do with the quality of the people, it has everything to do with the journalism. I worry we are an imperiled profession."

Here's why Kroft should not be worried:

There are thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, of people "out there" who have computers and digital still and motion cameras.  Powerful tools. These people travel and see things as they happen.  They are employed in positions in which they're in touch with the machinations of government, industry and business.

Are they "trained" journalists?  No.  And frankly we've reached a point where a college education may just be an unnecessary addition to a resume. But many of them are good, if not great, writers and more than capable of delivering investigated information in areas with which they're comfortable and familiar.  Politically they slant from hard left to hard right and that's a good thing.  They can present their product in free or seriously cheap online areas.

And, of course, there are the "trained" journalists who have been tossed off the bus.  These are the guys with the great contacts, their infinite Rolodex, that keeps them in touch with the movers and shakers who made their previous careers possible.  They can carve ten hours out of their week at Burger King to do for free what they previously did for bad pay.  And, as they say, do what you love, the money will follow.

BTW, have you bought anything from Amazon thru this website?  Please do.

Worried about fact-checking or editing of the New Media?  Don't be.  The Old Media wasn't, when they tossed out their corporate wisdom by laying off layers of editors. Read a half-dozen blogs or news sites across the political spectrum and you'll wind up with a balanced resource of information.  Who needs editors when you have balance?

It's a New World, kids.  No more need for $30k video cameras or multi-million dollar studios and, sadly, no more need for printing presses.

Just guys with ideas, a netbook and a Flip. 

Journalism will live on.  Diminished, but healthily.  There's always going to be a need for information.

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