PR Practitioners Should Plan For The Next Newsroom Today

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In surveys with readers of the San Jose Mercury News, Chris O’Brien, reporter and innovator on the issue of news in the US, presented four major findings about how people get information:

    • Google
    • Other people are a major resource of information
    • Conversations
      • Choice

There are 5 main theme of the Next generation of the newsroom a project to build the next generation newsroom being conducted at Duke University

1. Integrated – Newsrooms must be fully integrated across blogs and multimedia. It should embrace all platforms. Adapt a consumption model where readers can become so intrigued by the site that they lose track of time as they are immersed in the information.

2. Innovation – The newsroom must be a center for innovation; the 150 year old model was mostly static. We are now in an era of constant change.

3. Collaborative – there must be interactions with other groups outside of your own comfort zone. Cross pollination is a good thing in a new newsroom to expand knowledge and create areas where they will meet each other.

4. Adaptable – Allow for flexibility in assignments, even movable furniture that can be quickly reconfigured to meet a project need.

5. Transparency – Newsrooms need to be open to the community, creating the ability for a dialogue. Changing from a one way medium to a two way organ of information.

New jobs in journalism according to O’Brien

  1. Programmer journalists
  2. Media Conductors
  3. Backpack Journalists
  4. Cybrarian
  5. Community Managers

This is a summary of a presentation given at the NewComm Forum produced by the Society for New Communications Research. I agree and submit that all media is now multimedia. That means companies and PR firms need to determine what other resources are appropriate for specific releases. For example, consider audio soundbites or videos of relevant visual elements that enhance the story. These can be set up on a news page at the company’s website or posted on a unique landing page, all trackable. This is a start toward what will be a new type of news release called the social media release. A topic for another post.