When the radio was invented, it created new ways people could get their news. For many years it was popular. Almost everyone had a radio. The thought was that the radio was so amazing that nothing would ever take its place. However, once the television was invented that all changed. With the invention of the television the radio became of lesser importance. With the television people could see their favorite shows, including the news as moving pictures. The same fate of the radio awaits that of newspaper journalism if something is not done to fix it.
One of the new ways of getting the news that is competing with the newspaper is the internet. The internet offers the opportunity for the people to get their news quicker without having to wait hours for the next reprinting of the newspapers. With the internet getting breaking news takes a couple of seconds with clicks of a mouse.
The cost of internet advertising is also at play. It is much cheaper to advertise on the internet than it is in the newspaper. Because of this advertisers have been pulling their advertising from newspapers. With the internet people can now have their own WebPages and advertise themselves at a much cheaper cost of the newspaper. Newspapers have been surviving on advertisements for years, and now that that seems to be in decline so has the newspaper business.
Another important factor affecting newspapers is that most of the websites on the internet offer free content. With websites like Google, and Yahoo! Having to pay for news, content has become optional. No longer are subscriptions needed to access a story someone wants to read. In order to keep readers newspapers have began placing exclusive stories that one can read for a price. However, that too is not working. For every new firewall created someone always finds a way to bypass it.
In my opinion trying to save the newspaper is impossible. However, journalism has evolved and taken on new designs. Websites such as the New York Times and The Washington Post have begun adding multimedia to their websites. Exclusive stories that could only be read in the Newspapers can now be shown and heard as podcasts and small video diaries right on the site.
Journalism does not only have to deal with newspapers. With channels like CNN, MSNBC and BBC the way people get their news has also changed. These news channels have also changed the way the news is being reported. With these channels running 24 hour news cycles the wait for news is all but gone. If you want to find out what is happening in the news at that moment all one has to do is turn on your television.
Another transformation journalism has gone through is citizen journalism. Ordinary civilians report on news stories and then either through blogs or sending them to news stations like CNN to air the story. These news networks actually ask their viewers about their views and respond to them via Facebook and Twitter. Some journalists have even begun pairing up with these citizen journalists or amateur news reporters on stories. For the news companies who use these amateur journalists it as seen as good business because they save money by not having to pay the professional journalists.
The news has also been trying to survive by being part of a niche instead of trying to report on any news story possible. Websites such as the Texas Tribune, ESPN.com, and Fox News (even though they deny it) have their own niche. The Texas Tribune only reports on the politics of Texas and nothing else, ESPN reports on sports and Fox News reports stories with a conservative slant.
I feel that journalism has taken a turn for the worse. When it comes to the world of news and journalism the competition to get breaking news or important news events has changed what many news networks or newspapers consider being “breaking news.” An example of this change happened during an interview with comedian, actor, and activist Bill Cosby on “The Situation Room” hosted by Wolf Blitzer. Bill Cosby was in the middle of his speech discussing the education of young African American children by their parents. During that discussion, Wolf Blitzer actually stopped Bill Cosby to report on what he said was breaking news. His version of breaking news happened to be reporting and showing Paris Hilton coming out of jail for a DUI conviction. It is events like this that have made me unhappy with the reporting on today’s news. I feel that I get more honest and unbiased news listening to comedians like Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and Bill Maher among others. I feel like those comedians have less of a bias than most “news” networks or “news”papers. If a politician screws up or does something different than what promised the comedians will more likely than not call them out on it. News networks for the most part, I feel, report on the story based on their bias. If the network is closer to the right than it will report harsher stories or even false stories about the left and at the same time report kinder stories concerning the right. This is also true for many liberal networks as well. Statistics show that most of the college age demographic gets their news the way I do, by listening to comedians like Jon Stewart. According to Bootie Cosgrove-Mather, a writer for CBS news stated in a 2004 article titled “Young Get News from Comedy Central: Jon Stewart is Source of News for Many Americans Under Age 30” that the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found that 21 percent of people aged 18 to 29 cited “The Daily Show” and “Saturday Night Live” as a place where they regularly learned presidential campaign news. A close second to ABC, CBS or NBC’s nightly news broadcasts which was 23 percent. If it were up to me I would rather have Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert as my anchor men rather than any of the current “news” journalists.
An Example of what I consider to be real news:
Jon Stewart Interviews Jim Cramer, Part 1
Jon Stewart Interviews Jim Cramer, Part 2
Jon Stewart Interviews Jim Cramer, Part 3