Just a note that, finally, it's a book. "Principles of Convergent Journalism," co-written by Doug, Augie Grant and Jeff Wilkinson was released late last week from Oxford.
We've tried to build a book that can be used by newbies or professionals to bridge the gap to the "other" media by giving them the basics to work in all, and a killer glossary so that they can speak the lingo.
If you get an exam copy, let us know how you like it.
Update May 2008
Awhile back, Bill Reader asked me to expound a bit more on the community journalism connection in the book. As often happens, I got swamped with classes and seminars like ACES and got behind. But let me now correct that.
When we wrote the book, the journalist always in my mind's eye was at a small daily, 20,000 or less, or maybe a larger weekly or twice- or thrice-weekly. A place where some of my students have gone, like the Shelby (N.C.) Star, which has gone heavily into digital journalism -- audio, video, online maps, etc. One of its newest assets is the Star Car, a completely outfitted live unit:
Online wireless capabilities through a cell phone connection.I also had in the back of my mind the journalist at the small community TV station, like many in the Midwest and Mountain West, who might now be called on to file "print" for the Web site (yes, we know much of it is still "shovelware," but that will change). And all three of us wanted to show that convergent journalism does not just mean the big three: print, broadcast and online. So our approach to the book was, first, to give some practical advice to those who suddenly are thrown into doing "another" medium. Thus we have chapters on the basics of broadcast for print folks and the basics of print for broadcast folks (I think the illustration of the same story - broadcast and print - that highlights the differences, especially the additional information needed for print and the need to think visually for broadcast is one of the best parts of the book).
A camera mounted on it where people online can see what reporters see.
A GPS tracking system that lets people watch where the car is going online ... not only can you watch the news as it happens, you can watch the Star Car as it's chasing the news that's happening.
We also then talk about "repurposing" print and broadcast for online. Some folks have not liked us for doing that, but we felt it was disingenuous not to acknowledge the current state of affairs and at least try to suggest some best practices.
We then have chapters devoted to new types of content online and -- and this is important -- other types that may emerge as well, such as billboards and radio sidebands.
Finally, the glossary is one of the most complete we know of that seeks to enable a journalist to translate from print to broadcast to digital technologies.
We know that journalists at small papers and broadcast stations already are multitasking -- for instance that small-newspaper reporter probably also is taking still photos. So while we talk about stills, the person might skip that (or he or she might pick up a pointer or two).
The book is aimed not only at students, but at professionals looking to "repurpose" themselves. More information and resources are on our wiki, and here is a chapter list:
- Introduction to Convergent Journalism (pg. 1)
- Basic Skills and Roles in Convergent Newsrooms (15)
- From Print to Internet: Repurposing Content (35)
- From Print to Internet: New Types of Content (53)
- From Broadcast to Internet: Repurposing Content (75)
- From Broadcast to Internet: New Types of Content (91)
- Basics of Broadcasting (109)
- Basics of Print (127)
- Internet News (145)
- Adding (Multi) Media to the Web (165)
- Converging With Other Emerging Media (187)
- Your Future in Convergent Journalism (203)
- Glossary (219)