In one of a series of lectures on innovation in journalism at City University London, journalists from leading new media organisations shared their advice on how to bring something new to an organisation, and push the profession forward.
Amid discussion of visual journalism skills, mobile-ready reporting, data visualisation and private messaging services, the speakers shared some central ideas on how to innovate in journalism.
Remember their advice:
Ben Bryant, investigative reporter, Vice News
- Find the stories that no one is covering.
- Ask the questions that no one is asking.
- What can you see?
- If you see something innovative that you like, ask them how they did it.
- Find a human story behind the news.
- Think about what tools you can use to tell the story.
- Question headline figures. "Sometimes a massive story is staring you in the face from the headline of another."
- Ask yourself if a data visualisation is really necessary, if it really adds something to the story.
- Keep the story itself as the central, most important part of the piece, rather than letting any digital extras take the lead.
- When you fail on the web all it means is nobody reads your story.
- If you see a good idea, steal it and do it better.
- Don't forget the basics of journalism, no matter what medium or platform you are working on.
- Allow some room to fail, but make sure you do it quickly and then move on.
- Remember there are plenty of digital areas and platforms to play with.
- Know when to turn off. There is no end point to the internet or digital media, and being able to step away from it is important.