Panel discusses future of journalism

Juliana Moraes-Liu, Author

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Mike Swift, staff writer for The Mercury News, discusses the need for newspapers to adapt in an increasingly web-based world of journalism.

– Suzanna Ackroyd

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Journalists participating in a panel discussion hosted by The Paly Voice agreed that in the years to come, journalism will continue shifting online and demand greater creativity and innovation.

Present at the panel discussion on Friday, Jan. 27, were Dylan Tweney, executive editor of Venture Beat, Angie Chang, editor in chief of Women 2.0, Mike Swift, staff writer for The Mercury News, and Aaron Selverston, editor of Palo Alto Patch.

Doreen Bloch, former editor in chief of The Paly Voice, moderated the discussion. Bloch is the co-founder of Poshly and author of the book The Coolest Startups in America, which will be released soon.

The panel came to an agreement that the world of journalism has changed significantly because of the Internet’s growing role in society. Journalists must acknowledge that readers expect quick news, especially as more and more people post about newsworthy events via Facebook and Twitter.

“Lots of people are out there, and everybody has a voice,” Tweney said.

Newspapers and print publications must also adapt to an increasingly web-based world of journalism.

“It’s adapt or die in the near future for newspapers,” Swift said.

Selverston added that, while many print newspapers may disappear, they will remain an integral component of journalism.

“Big newspapers aren’t going to die,” Selverston said. “Print is going to die, but those institutions will live on.”

Alongside the change in medium, the panelists believed that the format in which news is delivered to online readers must also change.

“Most news sites are not designed right now, they are engineered,” Tweney said. “They’re not beautiful to look at. But it is really possible for us to make a beautiful publication that promotes long online readership.”

No matter where journalism is headed, the panel agreed that creativity and innovation will be critical for success.

“We have to be entrepreneurial,” Selverston said.