Journalism as we know it is starting to drastically change. More and more people are relying on their Facebook news feeds and twitter timelines to update them on current events rather than picking up a newspaper or switching on the television. What impact does this have on the print media sector? Should we be worried? Current University of Wollongong students don’t necessarily believe we should be. Four out of five students believe that print media is still necessary in today’s society, despite the fact that technology is constantly evolving.
“I would like to think that people will always like the novelty of physically holding their media. I personally will always buy a physical magazine or a book; it makes the experience special. In a world where we are surrounded and bombarded by media, it’s nice to be able to turn everything off, go run a nice bubble bath and read a book or magazine. Print media… will always be necessary” – Zoe Simmons
As students interested in working in the journalism industry, particularly in the field of writing, all of them seem confident about the future of journalism. When asked whether online journalism is t0 have a positive or negative effect on the future of the journalism industry, all of them said it will have a positive effect. First year journalism student, Jessica Shaftoe believes that “online journalism is really accessible and cheap, and… helps to reach a wider audience”. This idea can be showcased through online newspapers. Fifteen years ago it would have been so difficult to read a newspaper from a different country, but nowadays these resources are readily available for all. Natasha Clarke believes that “it’s a way of expanding the field. There’s access to more, new ways to report and collect information”.
One of the main concerns in journalism today is the decline in print media. More and more magazine and newspapers are being shut down due to lack of sales and viewership. Hopeful entertainment and sports journalist Em Carlon believes that even if magazines and newspapers are no longer being physically printed, they will remain in the online world. This belief worries Shaftoe, as more and more people will be looking to find, or keep their jobs in the industry of online journalism. She thinks there will be even more competition to get where she wants to go.
With both of their sights set on working for Cosmopolitan Magazine, Jessica Shaftoe and Zoe Simmons hold online journalism as a valid and trustworthy source. Others have their doubts on how much false information is shared via the internet. Simmons states “someone is still writing the articles and gathering information. [It is] no different from those working in print media. The only difference is how it’s presented.”
“People are still going to want reliable sources of news that they trust”- Em Carlon