GLF 78: Graham reckons that newspapers need to accept the new media.
OLD MEDIA V NEW MEDIA
Recently I caught a debate between some of our finest written journalists on Twitter about the role of “bloggers” in today’s football media. This was on the back of the bloggers breaking the news on the new Hearts Manager after the sacking of Jim Jeffries.
The gist of it seemed to be that the print boys knew the story early on and wanted to hold on to it for the paper coming out, and were a bit pissed off that they were trumped by “amateurs”.
The bloggers were described as “cut and paste merchants” who shouldn’t be allowed access to press conferences as they never ask any questions, then run out and publish the answers they have heard.
While I know a few of the guys who work in the papers, I have no sympathy for the medium as a whole. For me they have failed to keep up with the technology of the 21st Century and have been overtaken by the digital outlets.
There is a generation now growing up who have not got into the habit of buying newspapers as they have been able to access the news on their club through the internet.
The official sites, certainly for clubs like Motherwell, provide a depth of coverage the clubs will never get in the mainstream media, particularly if the Old Firm domination continues in Scotland. Then there are the “unofficial” sites where fans have the ability to express their own opinion either on a message board or via a blog or article of their own.
Then of course there are the social media sites like Facebook and Twitter which provide another rich source of information and gossip. This allows news to be broken as it happens, with the spread of WiFi stories that can be broken only by using a smart phone, no need for a typewriter or a laptop nowadays!
These are the outlets the newspapers have failed to react to by continuing to provide the same service they have for the last 40-50 years or so. As one of the guys in the twitter debate did mention they need to not only break the news but provide insight and comment.
They should be able to provide in-depth insight that many find is not available on the internet. There is still something about starting to read a newspaper from the back and looking for a Motherwell story but they have to give the story a different edge.
For example, since the News of the World went belly up I have had a real struggle finding a Sunday paper that is different and worth reading. The rest seem to only come up with articles based upon the press conferences during the week. There is no variety and things come across as lazy!
Surely a blogger is only the modern day equivalent of a fanzine writer, and they managed to see them off. There will be a future for papers if they react to the modern day, embrace the internet and come up with something different.
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