Journalists Are Demanding Technology That News Giants Aren’t Providing


Photo licensed under Creative Commons by crabchick.

An article in the New York Times a few days ago chronicled the departure of Ezra Klein from the Washington Post to pursue a new web-based journalism website. Klein along with two Post colleagues and other veteran journalists joined together to build, which debuted a week ago.

The reason for their departure from a long considered benchmark of journalism to a tech-startup is intriguing: “We were badly held back not just by the technology, but by the culture of journalism,” Klein said in the article.

The article added that while Klein considers The Post “an excellent publication, he felt that the conventions of newspaper print journalism in general, with its commitment to incremental daily coverage, were reflected in publishing systems, which need first and foremost to meet the needs of printing a daily paper.”

The Times article noted that Klein and his fellow journalists’ decision to leave The Post was yet “another watershed moment in the news business: a moment when young talent began demanding superior technology as the key to producing superior journalism.”

Furthermore, the article noted that the technology developers at Vox Media “call themselves journalists and work continually with writers and reporters to build the tools they require.”

This article begs several questions to be considered: Where will benchmark news services like The Washington Post and even The New York Times land in the future if their technology systems do not meet the demands of tomorrow’s top-tier journalists? How does this conglomeration of business and media affect the news consumers receive? Where does the term “journalist” begin and end?

4 responses to “Journalists Are Demanding Technology That News Giants Aren’t Providing

  1. Very interesting. As we all pursue journalism as a career, we must always remain on top of new technology and innovation. However, what if the company we work for refuses to budge and remains stuck in the stone age? What will it take to get our places of work to “get with it” and modernize? While I do understand that replacing old technology with new technology can be expensive, it is absolutely crucial to do so. Otherwise, your employees will resign, striking out on their own to pursue their own innovations with the newest technological developments, as is the case with and Ezra KIein. Readers follow the talent. As journalism continues to changes with these advances, it in the major news companies’ best interests to do so for this reason alone.

  2. I find it so strange that media giants are resistant to change. As a journalism student, I’m always ready to learn the newest technology and shift the way I work so I can be the most up-to-date. Will this leave me as I get older? Will I be stuck in my ways? I certainly hope not. With more and more journalists coming out of school incredibly tech-savvy, media companies are going to have no choice but to get with the times if they want to produce excellence.

  3. Interesting point. I think journalism is always behind the progress of technology and I don’t really understand why. It would be much easier if journalists start using and integrating the new technology in their job as soon as it´s out there. Its obvious that journalism is changing and the paper edition will have to change a lot to compete with the online sites and the movie editions. I think we should keep the essence of the “old-fashion” journalism, but it needs to integrate more technology and faster, not when there is no option because everybody is using it.

  4. This is an interesting development. From the looks of their website, I think Vox could be a good source for trustworthy information. They seem to be playing up the new trend in feature headlines while touting an “everything you need to know” style that points at the journalistic idea of unbiased, all-encompassing reporting. I’m excited to watch how it progresses.

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