Stale Old News or What Really is News?
Before the Internet journalism was more locally focused. Interesting stories and stories of great regional, national or global importance would be syndicated through news and media channels that delivered ‘out of town’ news to their local markets. The core message still had a distinctly local flavour and a local feel from its place of origin. Today the news is rarely broken by journalists. Instead it is streamed, tweeted, blogged and emailed around the world in an instant by normal citizens.
When journalists finally catch up they (more often than not) simply start to rehash what the masses have already published. Some interviews and video footage are spliced in for good measure and these are repeated ad nauseam (during a breaking news event). Ironically, quite often the videos are grabbed YouTube, Viddler or similar so even they aren’t original.
Then the same basic system of syndication that is still in place kicks in and the story is published several days, even weeks later through various channels. The story is used as filler next to other filler to justify the sale of papers, television advertising dollars or whatever.
Journalism used to be about developing a story, investigating both sides, uncovering the facts and presenting the case. These days it is about either paraphrasing and rewording social media contributions, or presenting a scenario based on personal opinion or directed by company policy
Just to clarify, I am not against the media channels taking advantage of the live on-the-spot content that is being created by everyday men and women. I think it is pretty smart and shows how the industry is progressing with the technology and way of the world.
What I disagree with is the way it is rehashed and reused and regurgitated constantly to fill spots because they are too lazy to go out and find stories that are news worthy and report them. What I also disagree with is that these ‘news repeaters’ are being giving journalistic protection because they are employed by a media company, and maybe somewhere in the past they picked up a piece of paper with their name on it declaring they had passed a course in journalism. At the same time others who genuinely report news, new news, and interesting news, and whose content is then taken and used by the same media channels, these people are not afford the same rights and protection under the journalism laws.