Tag Archives: deputy editor-in-chief

Blog08: Journalism versus hearth blogging

Not your average panel with Tim Overdiek, deputy editor in chief at NOS news; Clo Willaerts, marketing manager for Sanoma Magazines Belgium; Paul Bradshaw from the Online Journalism Blog; and Piet Bakker, professor at the Hogeschool Utrecht.

The journalism/blogging panel aims to answer questions gathered via de Nieuwe Reporter, one of the largest Dutch journalism blogs.

Tim Overdiek from NOS News shares that over a hundred NOS colleagues from a total of 400 have contributed to weblogs.nos.nl. Only forty employees are active bloggers but a hundred contributions in the form of either comments or blog posts is a certainly good number.

He remarks that professional journalists often don’t see bloggers as collaborators but as a form of contribution, as something they can use. There is no direct participation. The participating journalism that Dan Gillmor refers to is not happening in the Netherlands, according to Overdiek.

We’re currently moving beyond blogs, and the practice of blogging has gone beyond the medium of the blog and has partly and moved to Twitter for example. There is a whole world to gain for bloggers and also for organisations to actively set out to get people blogging.

It is interesting to note that during one of the previous sessions Tim Overdiek sent out a tweet to remind himself to create a 101 Teletekst Twitterfeed asap.

Teletekst is the Dutch equivalent of the BBC Ceefax and the 101 page is the standard page for news headlines. It is interesting to see how one of the most popular ways to keep up with the news is going to be syndicated on Twitter in the near future. The NOS is focusing on embracing the new social media and sees syndicating existing content on different platforms as the next step.

The question that was selected from the Nieuwe Reporter was a rather odd choice since there was a lot of discussion about the relevance and phrasing of the question in the comments (in Dutch). Unfortunately the question also eventually drived the discussion nowhere:

Imagine there would be a stock exchange for newspapers, broadcasters, magazines, weblogs, and other media. Which stocks would you buy when taking the next five years in account?

Tim Overdiek: Buy stocks in NOS, we have great outlets, we have different platforms such as mobile TV, blogging and Twitter. The NOS media department is pretty tech savvy. However, he advises not to bet on just one company because there are too many interesting things going on in different places.

Piet Bakker would buy stocks in magazines because the problem with blogging and internet is that to monetize it is quite difficult.

Paul Bradshaw would also buy stocks in magazines because all of the advertising on the internet pretty much goes to Google. Offline and online advertising are not on the same level yet and on top of that magazines have a lot of muscle. Bradshaw thinks that they will buy out successful blogs. Newspapers are also trying to be more like magazines which shows the bright future of magazines but they don’t see it quite yet.

Journalists should work with bloggers on a level playing field. He [Bradshaw] mentions the example of a newspaper that recently recruited 40 bloggers but it’s not a top down relationship with one main editor that makes all the decisions. He sees this as a good way forward because journalists and bloggers should treat each other like citizens.

This post originally appeared on Anne Helmond’s blog.

Online Journalism China: The voices in-between the official press and the western media

Adding to the burgeoning hoard of international bloggers on Journalism.co.uk, China Daily’s Dave Green offers an insight into the world of online journalism in China.

Domestic furore over the Western media’s reporting of the Tibet risings and the Olympic Torch relay was as inevitable as night following day, but the nature of the backlash wasn’t as simple as Chinese patriots toeing the party line.

There was – of course – the usual patter of soft patriotism: MSN has been running a campaign urging users to add ‘love China’ symbols to their usernames – an estimated seven million Chinese MSN users have signed up so far.

And hard patriotism at the involved and overtly politicised level when Anti-CNN.com – a site aiming to ‘expose the lies and distortions in the Western media’ – was set up after CNN commentator Jack Cafferty called the Chinese government ‘goons and thugs’.

There’s an implicit irony – hypocrisy even – of calling Western media biased, it rather suggests there’s little hope of any introspective eyes turning on the output of the domestic media and realising its failings.

But things are rarely as simple as a polarised set of black and white opinions.

If you take the reaction to a recent essay by Chang Ping, deputy editor-in-chief of the Southern Metropolis Daily, as any kind of benchmark then calls to discover the middle ground and advocate the use of the internet to hunt for the truth on all media may be an even more radical idea than Chinese popular public opinion accepting what’s written by the Western press.

Chang wrote: “If netizens genuinely care about news values, they should not only be exposing the fake reports by the Western media, but also challenging the control by the Chinese government over news sources and the Chinese media.”

This comment on Anti-CNN.com, not unlike Chang’s suggestion, is also simply calling for better reporting and scrutiny of both sides.

Chang’s comments led him to being widely labelled a ‘Chinese traitor’ and a ‘running dog’.

The worry is that his suggestion for simple scrutiny will go unheard amongst the clamour to present a united front against perceived foreign oppression. If it does – if the middling voices are not heard – the chances of Chinese looking beyond state-controlled media for news on anything but the most local or trivial of issues seems remarkably slim.