Journalism has always been shaped by technology. Technological advances have been inextricably linked to the ability to disseminate information. We have seen a massive paradigm shift from the times of the emergence of the written word to the progression towards many other advanced forms of journalism like digital and new media including the broadcast mediums like radio and television which have each changed the way information is consumed. Technological changes influence the way of the working of journalists, the nature of news content, the structure of the newsroom and news industry, and the relationship between news organizations and the public.
Journalists do their work in different ways. They may write on-scene reports or use the telephone and internet to do interviews. They may also use the internet to research information on some unknown fact or phenomenon, event, happening, or any unknown news piece about which they want to know more. Technological changes affect the editorial and production processes of journalism. News content is also affected by tech changes. The introduction of digital technology has affected the nature of story-telling and the online presentation of news giving viewers a more interesting feel with the presence of pictorial representations. Technology affects the structure and organization of the newsroom, the editorial and business functions, and also the hierarchical character of the newsroom. For e.g., if we start from the past, we see that Gutenberg’s printing press laid the foundation for mass literacy and the invention of newspapers. Also, Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone changed how journalists gather and report the news. Today all the public records and corporate information is published in online forms and journalists now use online tools effectively to gather information, check facts, and find resources. The dawn of the internet made the dissemination of news faster with users able to access information instantly. It has a lot of sources like television, social media, radio, and newspapers. It changes the speed at which news is reported. Before you had to wait for the newspapers or the news program but now with the internet news is delivered instantly.
The internet has enabled journalists to reach out to their audience 24 hours a day. This accessibility also enables the audiences to give their feedback or contribute to media content any time in a day thus allowing the free flow of information.
Technology today has exerted a big influence on the content of news. The advent of video exerted a powerful influence on network news. Because of it, edits became easier, shots were shortened and the narrative became much fast-paced. The technological change also resulted in increased speed of news flow. The nature of storytelling and news presentation online is drastically changed by digital technology. Now because of multimedia, reporters can give readers and viewers a more fun, interesting experience to enjoy. The efficiency of scale and distribution too is great.
The lines between advertising and editorial content are blurring. In the newsroom technology, especially online communication is affecting the centralization and hierarchical character of the newsroom. In the traditional form of media, newsrooms have been hierarchically organized around an editor or news director who exerts powerful control over the news operation followed by other officials in the chain of command. And the internet is changing this significantly. Now there is more frequent communication between newsroom personnel and audience members by e-mail. It influences story selection and coverage. Technological change has reshaped the relationship between and among news organizations, journalists and the public including audiences, competitors, news sources, sponsors, and those who seek to regulate or control the press. Finally, the emergence of the internet and the world wide web as a medium of mass communication is redefining the notion of who is a journalist. Today anyone with a computer and an internet connection can own a printing press and reach a global audience.