How High Speed Internet has impacted Journalism
In line with our mission of making things easy and saving money for Canadians, Acanac launched our very first scholarship contest over the summer of 2017. We asked students across Ontario and Quebec to let us know how High Speed Internet has impacted their field of study by either writing a short essay or sharing a video with us on our Facebook or Twitter pages for a chance to win $1,000.
After reviewing hundreds of contest entries, our selection committee narrowed it down to 6 semifinalists and then chose our winner: Emily Humber-Verge, a Journalism student from Carleton University in Ottawa.
We’re pleased to share Emily’s wining submission and hope you enjoy her thoughtful and well-articulated insights as much we did.
High Speed Internet didn’t just change the field of journalism, but blew it completely to smithereens. Even now, journalists are still picking up the pieces and navigating how to keep the world informed in the era of short tweets and shorter attention spans.
The Internet has changed everything about news and the media, from how information is collected, to how it’s packaged, to how it’s consumed. Reporters have gone from pounding pavement to sending emails. They aren’t just writers anymore, they’re photographers, videographers, editors, graphic designers, and tech support, because multi-media is what grabs people’s attention. Consumers don’t just grab a newspaper anymore, they pick up an iPad.
People are bombarded with information from the moment they wake up in the morning until the moment they shut their eyes at night, because High Speed Internet has allowed us to be in touch, everywhere and all the time. A new challenge facing journalism as a result is trying to convince people why this news story, out of millions, is one they need to click on.
I would argue the most significant change, as put by one of my professors, is that “Journalists are no longer the gatekeepers.” No longer is the role of the journalist to convey information that the public may not get otherwise, because information is no longer a commodity in the way it once was. Anyone can look up public records or hear for themselves a politician’s speech. Now the role of the journalist is to sort through the immense amount of information, separate the wheat from the chaff, and provide context in a way that grabs people’s attention.
For some, the death of journalism as we knew it is depressing. I see it as a world of opportunity, to rebuild into something better than it was.
Emily, 2017 Acanac Scholarship Winner