It is not enough anymore, for a Journalist to just be a strong writer and a proficient collector of facts. They need to do more than just tell a story to a reader, or relay informationfrom an event. With America, and very quickly the rest of the world, beginning to rely so heavily on individualism, journalist’s need to recognize the power of social media.
A very important word that I learned early on with a career in modeling and then an interest in journalism was the word brand. I understand that part of the ethical code of journalism is to be “neutral” and that you are simply a reporter of the news and nothing else. That as a reporter, your opinion means nothing and your bias should be completely non-existent in your writing. However, when focusing on tthe history of journalism, Robert Niles said in his Online Journalism Review that “ you’ve got to be writing about a passion. Find issues within all those in your community about which you are most passionate, and write about them.” He is saying that if you write about topics that are important to you, your voice and your personality, your passion and your interest, will shine through the text. Readers will feel a closer connection to who you are as a person, rather than just you being another reporter to them. This is the perfect example of branding. As a journalist in the next generation, you need to stand out and connect with the readers. You need to hope that your energy will remain relevant to them in all the endeavors that you pursue. Then after you create a brand, your “readers will see that, and want to jump in themselves, if only just to watch. Your success will elicit more success and your online community will grow.”
In an article written by Paul Grabowicz titled The Transition to Digital Journalism, he also explains how, “for journalists and news organizations, social networks provide an opportunity for connecting with people, distributing news stories and complementing news coverage with feeds from social media.” For a long time the media has been a one way stream of journalists publishing information for readers to see in newspapers or on the television. However, now in the new technologically advanced era that we are entering, this doesn’t have to be a one way stream anymore. Information can be pushed out to viewers, and viewers can reply, comment, and start discussions directly with the journalists. A reporter can build their brand by connecting with the community and in return, the community will want to follow and build a relationship with that reporter.