The Future of Journalism
NBC’s Tom Brokaw says newspapers will not die.
To get some answers to these questions, I went to a lecture recently by well-known journalist Tom Brokaw. The longtime anchor of the NBC Nightly News spoke on the future of journalism at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.
I met with him briefly before the lecture and had my picture taken with him. I reminded him that we had met at the Democratic Convention last summer. He not only remembered me, he remembered what he said to me! “Every four years I get to do this [cover the conventions],” he told me then.
Brokaw has seen the news industry go through big changes in his lifetime. He is quick to tell of his dislike of the Internet version of news reporting.
“Very few bloggers are actually journalists,” he said. (Of course, I hoped he was not referring to Scholastic’s blogs!)
Brokaw says he believes bloggers wait for political gaffs to write about, instead of reporting on political issues. He emphasized the need for the public to use their “critical judgment” when making sense of the what they read online.
Brokaw said he believes “journalism is not dead” and that investigative journalism will thrive. He also believes trusted, high quality news organizations are becoming more popular. However, he pointed out, the newspaper industry is in anguish.
So, in these times of 24/7 cable news and thousands of news-related websites, what does Brokaw think can possibly save the daily papers? The longtime TV journalist suggests that if more newspapers published through E-Book readers, such as the Amazon Kindle or the Sony Reader, they might be able to save themselves.
I think that’s a great idea! Reducing paper usage would be better for the environment and the lower subscription costs would help the consumer.
While it appears that the media are going through some drastic changes, I am still an optimist about my chosen profession. I’m glad I went to hear Brokaw’s lecture. He has given me more hope for the future of journalism.
PHOTO: Kid Reporter Jack Greenberg and NBC's former Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw at a lecture Brokaw gave at Yale University recently. (Photo Courtesy Jack Greenberg)