Megan Taylor

front-end dev, volunteacher, news & data junkie, bibliophile, Flyers fan, sci-fi geek and kitteh servant

Saving Newspapers

Last night, one of the topics discussed at the UF Newsies meeting was the future of journalism and newspapers. The obvious concern is that I’ll have worked my butt off through college and not be able to get a job when I graduate.

So, what will save the newspaper business? The fogies will always prefer the printed page. But my generation has gotten used to the constant eye-fatigue that comes from reading long documents off a computer screen. We like the pretty pictures and moving images and click-y things. The ability to interact with an environment while sprawled in the comfort of my leather desk chair, where just the slight movement of my index finger can transport me…OK, personally, I miss books.

A new feature that the Newsies will have to accommodate to is multimedia. The editor is actually in my Communications for the Internet class, so she and I toss words like “package,” “format,” and “multi-media” over the heads of some of the others.

I have to write three articles over Winter Break, to have as stock at the beginning of the semester. These will be accompanied by photos, video and audio where applicable. I could even make a Google Map for one of them.

So the transition from print to Internet doesn’t seem like a problem in terms of accommodating stories to a new medium. The problem appears to be in making money off of it. I’m a writer, an observer, a reporter, a dreamer. A business woman I’m not. But I might have to learn to be that, too.

What are you doing that’s new and exciting? What ideas do you have for the business of journalism?

5/4/2009 Update: I think it’s really funny that I realized the need for business skills three years ago. Not that I bothered to do anything about it. And only now are j-schools adding business/entrepreneurial classes to the curriculum.

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