The Changing Faces of News


The Changing Faces of News ……..some thoughts from Radio Festival 2014

15th October 2014 with Carla Buzasi, WGSN, Louisa Campton, BBC, David Ottewell, Trinity Mirror

The panel discussed the changing face of news and how the digital world is impacting on news output.

David Ottewell began by saying that ‘the world of radio has trained bloggers’ and that the old style of phone-ins to radio stations is similar to what bloggers are currently doing.  People could do it whenever and wherever they wanted and blogging is the same today.  David pointed out that people have more freedom and this is changing how news is being delivered. 

Louisa Camption started with Newsbeat 6 months ago and quickly realised that Newsbeat is much more than radio.  She ultimately believes that all audiences are now empowered by their phones and that we must be ‘mobile first’, not digital first.  Louisa believes that this is very exciting and that is allows us all to think differently.  She believes that the focus of Newsbeat is to give their audience what they want and this should be the focus of all stations. 

The chair of the session asked the panel the following :

What is now required from the journalist?

All of the panel agreed that as journalists we now need to strike a balance by taking the best of the old skills and combining them with the best of the new skills now available to journalists.  The role of the journalist is not dead and the expectations to call yourself a journalist are now much higher.  The core skills of the journalist, how to spot a story, how to communicate it, what is important and fact finding, have not changed amidst this digital world.  They all concluded by saying that a great journalist has a natural curiosity and this will never change.  

How important is visualisation?

The idea must drive the visualisation, visualisation must add value, videos must be good and in most cases, the fewer the better.  Make really good videos and promote them in the evening when people have access to WiFi.  Stations must create the best options for their station and work within the constraints you have and in many cases, less is often more. 

The panel also pointed out that videos don’t always need to be of professional quality.  Newsbeat are getting better audiences by having fewer and better videos. 

Are you loosing Editorial Control?

The overwhelming answer from the panel was NO.  Editorial control protects the quality of what stations do, it is a new world and we are deciding what we are giving our audiences every day. 

 Radio is the most important priority, after this you allow your content to reach more audiences across many different platforms. Louisa Campton concluded that the ‘digital world cannot compete with the immediacy and intimacy of radio and as such radio will continue to flourish. 

Source : Radio Festival 2014, Salford Manchester. 

« Back to Blog Posts