Name: Ruchi GattaniStudent id: C1675307Module Title: MCT509 Reporters and the ReportedSubmission Title: “How must traditional media organizations change to serve audiences in a digital age?”Changes in the media landscape are constant. The media industry can be defined as a varied collection of organizations that share the production, publication, and distribution of media texts (BBC, Bitesize). Traditional media is a rather very large category and it includes the old media that existed before the advent of the internet. It is everywhere when you switch on the television, listen to the radio, read the newspaper over your morning coffee, magazines or receive fliers in your mailbox, all are a part of the traditional media. Examples of traditional media organizations include BBC, The Guardian, CNN, NDTV India, etc. While, the new media platforms are also diverse; they comprise of the Internet, mobile phones, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Digitalisation has changed the way that information flows in today’s world. Digital media technology provides a two-way communication between news producers and news consumers through the modern journalistic norm of user-generated content (UGC). The application of UGC through videos, tweets, online forums, blogs, podcasts and many others, mainly with the help of social media as a platform, widens channels of communication between news producers and news consumers. The emergence of news consumers acting also as influential news providers have given rise to the establishment of journalistic terms such as ‘interactive journalism’, ‘citizen journalism’ and ‘participatory journalism’ (Singer 2010; Nip 2006). This does, however, simultaneously brings forth challenges to the conventional news industry. Traditional media like the newspapers or magazines information can only be accessed when these media are physically in our hand, unlike the new media where the information can be accessed anytime and anywhere whenever convenient to the audience. Digitalisation within media technology has indirectly and changed functions of conventional media as they merge with newer media forms. There are a few effective methods in which they can evolve themselves and serve the digital audience, which is discussed below.Social MediaTechnological developments are creating a society in which social media is embedded and it is the most powerful tool for this digital news age. Checking through Facebook and Instagram feed has become as important as morning coffee.As quoted by Erik Qualman, an American author of Socialnomics and a motivational speaker, “We don’t have a choice whether we do social media, the question is how well we do it.” In its 2016 report, Reuters revealed the popularity of social media as a main source of news, with Facebook being the most important source for discovering, consuming and sharing information (Newman et al. 2016). As of 2016, Facebook had 1.86 billion monthly active users (The statistics portal 2016). Currently, there are 38 million social media users in the UK with 15 million active users of Twitter (Think Digital First, 2017). The biggest reason for the over-powering advent of social media is that now everyone feels like they have a voice. Whether through Facebook, Snapchat or Twitter, social media has provided a platform for anyone who has an opinion. This trend has given birth to digital news organizations like Buzzfeed, Vice & Huffington Post which have become the new competitors to legacy news organizations like BBC, Guardian, etc.Traditional media organizations can also create their accounts on Facebook, since it is the most prevalent among the users today and post the headlines daily on it. This also gives their audiences to opine and comment on the article. Another benefit of Facebook and Twitter is that it provides a platform for the live time news feed. Newspaper and Magazines can post any incident that very moment when it occurred and also show it live through ‘Facebook Live’ instead of waiting till next morning to publish it in their newspaper. Social media also enables to reach a larger audience in a cost-efficient way, as it is just a click away from anyone. It would help bring more traffic to their page which would, in the end, benefit the news organization itself. Traditional media organizations can have a separate team handling their various social media accounts.This will create an opening for amateur aspiring journalists to contribute content, thereby decreasing the pressure on the main editing room, which will also help them in understanding the demands of the millennials and gain more influence and popularity in the digital world, through the creation of catchy headlines, and news content that embraces various forms of graphics ranging from videos to GIFs, to lists (as in the case of Buzzfeed), quizzes, and briefly-written articles.2. Mobile ApplicationsWe have ushered in a smartphone era in 2017. It helps to create a unique brand identity apart from creating accounts and pages on social media, mobile applications are the organizations very own attempt to chase the digitalization and be an everyday part of their audience’s life. A number of studies by Oracle and MobileSmith have proved that over 60% users prefer mobile apps over websites to surf through information and services. Applications are usually 1.5 times faster than mobile websites and they perform actions much faster too. Users love tailored & personalized content according to their preferences. It’s like offering them communication in the language they speak and understand. This enhances their experience. Personalisation can be based on a user’s interest, behaviors, location, culture etc which is easier with mobile apps. They offer a seamless experience where the users can access information online and offline. The ability to send instant push notifications to your app users is a major reason why news enterprises should build an app. Push notifications are received on devices regardless a user opens an app or not which is used to send updates of the headlines occurring on a day and to keep the user engaged. 3. Over The Top Media Over the top media distribution or OTT allows organizations to broadcast audio and visual information over the internet and hence bypassing the traditional media like radio, television, etc. It makes it more easy and accessible for the audience. OTT strategy instance is.like creating a channel on Youtube where you can have daily podcasts, headline news bites, etc. which an organization wants to put attention on. They can also create their own podcast website. This can help the tv news channels to increase their engagement and widen their consumer base. Such platforms help reach millions of viewers within seconds since the access to these mediums is free of cost. They can have interesting interviews with famous personalities from different fields as podcast episodes and can also divide their content on the platform according to their news sections like lifestyle, economy, political, local news, global news, etc. This enables users to have easy access to their desired content of news and reduce the buffer period and ultimately improve the user experience. News organizations need to be on their toes to ensure that they are aware of the latest media developments, and should adapt accordingly without risking their main purpose of existence in the journalistic field, to inform and educate. Anyhow, the information put up on social media by the news organizations must be filtered to maintain the dignity and reputation of any news house and not promote fake news just for more engagement and propaganda. These are a few effective ways in which the old media can increase its numbers and evolve in this digital age and it’s proven by news legends of UK like BBC and The Guardian and also Indian news organizations like Times Of India and NDTV. For example, BBC with more than 1M likes on Facebook, 22.5M followers on Twitter and 4,345,474 subscribers on Youtube, it has taken legacy name ahead and created a niche in the digital news media by adopting change as it came with time and understanding that the media industry is and will be ever evolving.
September 9, 2019 0 Comments