(Roughly) Daily

Posts Tagged ‘future of journalism

The Future of Journalism, Part (Deep) Six: Caveat Lector…

More and more frequently, across a broader and broader swath of the press, we’re seeing the wages of increased competition with decreased resources…  Sometimes it’s print or television news services simply transcribing (or in the case of video, lightly editing) P.R. material; sometimes, the “restraint” that keeps reporters from pursuing unpleasant topics with interviewees– celebrities, politicians, or athletes– in order to guarantee continued access.   Sometimes it’s the insinuation of a reporter’s personal opinions into pieces via a “some experts claim” quote; sometimes, the simple laziness that grafts unchecked Wikipedia text directly into the body of a story.  Journalism just ain’t what it used to be– or at least, it’s not what one remembers thinking that it should have been.

Happily, British coder, designer, tech maven, and all-round nifty guy Tom Scott has ridden to the rescue with Journalism Warning Labels.

Readers in the U.K. can grab an A4 13-by-5 sheet of stickers (they’re labelled as ’65 per sheet’ or Avery L7651), and print out this PDF template.  American readers can use the version that fits on Avery’s Letter-size 5160 labels (or equivalent).  And readers worldwide who consume their updates online, can head over to Eric Donovan’s Newscrud for “stickers” that can be applied to websites.

As we wonder what Ben Hecht would make of all of this, we might recall that it was on this date in 1896 that Charles Henry Dow established the Dow Jones Industrial Average, publishing it for the first time in Customer’s Afternoon Letter, the daily two-pager that was the precursor to The Wall Street Journal.  Of the original 12 stocks that made up the DJIA, only General Electric is still part of the Index.  (Others included such giants of yester-year as American Cotton Oil and National Lead.)  The Index opened at 40.26 (the dollar average of the dozen stocks it covered).  Within months it had dropped to its all-time low, 28.48, in the depth of the Panic of 1896.

source

What’s Past is Prologue: The Future of the Book…

A guest post from Scenarios and Strategy (almanac entry added)…

“Special Glasses for Reading in Bed” source: Nationaal Archief

Much breath is being spent by the Chattering Classes predicting, debating, and otherwise worrying over the fates of the book, journalism, and publishing at large– broadly speaking: the creation, dissemination, storage, and use of knowledge itself.  Lots of jargon, a wealth of acronyms, and liberal use of facile analogies and constructs– it’s all a little dizzying.

Happily, Tim Carmody has ridden to the rescue. While he has mooted his own manifesto for the future of the book (eminently worth a read), his most recent contribution to the Science and Technology section of The Atlantic blog, is just what one needs in a Babel-like time such as this– some context.  In “10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books,” that’s precisely what he provides as he recounts, for example, the move from rolled scroll to folded codex, the replacement of papyrus by parchment (and then paper), the shift from vertical to horizontal writing/reading, back to vertical…

It’s fascinating; it’s illuminating… and it’s a terrifically useful reminder that writing, reading– communicating– and the forms in which they’re done have always been in flux: “10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books.”

As we pine for those iPads, we might recall that it was on this date in 1920 that radio station 8MK (later WBL, then WWJ) in Detroit became the first U.S. broadcaster to air regularly-scheduled newscasts.  The station, founded by the Scripps family and housed in their Detroit News headquarters, had gone on air 11 days earlier; then, after a period of testing, inaugurated its service with election returns.

Memoir of 8MK’s first employee (source)

The Future of the Fourth Estate?…

…from our friends at Make…  Bay Area readers should note (lest they missed the newspaper ads) that today is the first day of Maker Faire– a mustn’t-miss event organized and hosted by those same good folks!

As we sharpen our craft, we might recall that it was on this date in 1911 that Ray Harroun won the inaugural Indianapolis 500; Harroun averaged 74.6 mph in the Marmon Wasp.

The Marmon Wasp in which Ray Haroun won the first Indy 500

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: