The role of a reporter has evolved from a pen and paper note taker to multi-media extraordinaire. News outlets rely heavily on electronic tools because of its ability to collect and convey information in an efficient manner. This dependence forces aspiring journalists to obtain proficiency in all the devices necessary to report and publish breaking news.
Since journalists are expected to be technologically savvy, they must have the skill to take on more than just one role within the newsroom. Reporters are now faced with the task of understanding proper video recording strategies (zoom), photography techniques (lighting/ focus), as well as website layout (how your audience will view an article online). The ability for a journalist to morph into these roles allows news organizations to post stories in unique and visually appealing ways. Additionally, comprehension of the ethics involved in each medium is another characteristic that journalists need to adopt.
A writer must also produce straightforward pieces. This includes how the lead is written, the order the facts are presented, as well as simplistic diction. According to Principles of Convergent Journalism, the authors state that journalists are expected “…to scour their copy for many of the same issues that previously might have been left to a copy editor” (38).
In essence, as positions in the newsroom continue to merge, the skill set of a journalist expands. I now have an altered perspective of reporting. It is evident that my reporting strategy can no longer be simplistic. I cannot merely interview, write, and publish like before. There are a number of steps in between that complicate the reporting process.
Journalism has become a lock with a four-digit code. If you choose the right story, the right medium, the right layout, and the write words, you will unlock a successful news piece.