April 1, 2009

Online Journalists See Reasons for Optimism in News Industry

Journalists who work online are more optimistic about the future of their profession than are news people tied to more traditional media platforms, according to a new survey of Online News Association members by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Overall, the online journalists surveyed are less likely to think journalism is headed in the “wrong direction” than are journalists from traditional media. They are also more confident that online news will find a self-sustaining revenue model.

Fifty-seven percent of those surveyed, who come largely from websites linked to traditional media, say the Internet is “changing the fundamental values of journalism.” Some of the biggest changes, the respondents said, were a loosening of standards and more carelessness in online news gathering, and an increased emphasis on speed.

But not all of the changes were considered worrisome. Some journalists praised the growing diversity of voices, the potential of technology, and in some cases, even the move toward more overtly ideological points of view at news sites.

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