Future of News In An Increasingly Connected World

The events of Boston this week -- from the bombing to apprehending a suspect -- brought into stark relief the role of non-traditional news sources and highlighted weaknesses in traditional media systems.

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  1. It seems obvious, but let me say this up front: there are more of "them" than "us."
  2. "#Boston showed us that the continuous TV feed is a poor second to @Twitter." @MarkThompson #smsnyc @nytsms @carr2n
  3. By "them" I mean people who aren't  journalists. And by "us" ... well, let's just say trained-to-report-the-news folks.
  4. This isn't new.
  5. What's changed is that many -- maybe most -- of those non-journalists are carrying around in their hands the capability of a TV, radio and newspaper newsroom.
  6. My students and I have been talking about this for years: the role of news media in this always on world is verification
  7. Look. Verification has always been a key role of journalists. But when you publish a paper once a day or broadcast news twice a day, verification is a lot more straightforward. Rumors did not have the life that they have today.
  8. News organizations cannot compete with on-the-ground sources when there is a disaster -- man-made or natural. There aren't enough trained-and-employed journalists.
  9. From January 15, 2009:
  10. There's a plane in the Hudson. I'm on the ferry going to pick up the people. Crazy.
  11. And from January 12, 2010: 
  12. And April 2013:
  13. However, this week traditional media fell down on the all-important job of verification.
  14. The New York Times and the BBC held a summit Saturday on social media and news. The panelists were frank.