Journalism is always evolving and with advances in technology and limitless access to information, the evolution is happening faster than ever before.
Today’s world is community driven and moving away from individual blogs to open source and micro blogging platforms like Tumblr and Livejournal. Now, the web is overrun with social networks as creators around the world compete to have their voices heard.
If you’re a journalist with a great story, you no longer need a publication just some organization and a little bit of self-motivation. There are some credible, community oriented sites coming up for journalists and revolutionizing the field.
The first is Medium which comes from the same minds that brought us Twitter.
It’s a clean, text based site. It has no room for sidebars, widjits, or anything that will take away from the experience of the writing.
“It’s designed for little stories that make your day better and manifestos that change the world. It’s used by everyone from professional journalists to amateur cooks.” (Ev Williams – Welcome To Medium).
It’s filled with articles from publications around the world as well as the unpublished. Originally it was only open to professional writers who were paid by its staff to assure the quality of the content, but today it has opened up and anyone can create an account and post.
Stories range from editorials, to Q&A’s to opinions, and even short fiction. It’s a place to go and read but void of distractions with a more focused community that targets an audience similar to magazines.
The site makes it easy to pull together a list of recommendations and it will alert you to what other people are reading.
Writers make pitches, editors decided which pitches deserve backing, and they turn to their audience to fund the writers.
“The platform enables journalists and writers to collaborate on all aspects of the writing process, including commissioning, editing and publication.” (Contributoria – About)
Several groundbreaking features were able to be written through Conrtibutoria. The publication is monthly and it does undergo a rigorous editing process. It runs with the idea that it’s helping to tell stories that other publications might not be able to spend their resources on.
On that premise, in their last issue they covered child labor in Bolivia, cocaine in Columbia, and even problems on online privacy and modern feminism. This issue was made by a network of over 700 contributors and, collectively, the writers were paid 22,000 pounds for their work.
Online communities are working tirelessly to reestablish credible journalism but at what cost to real publications? Are this communities of freelancers a glimpse into the future of news?