As an adamant purist and traditional journalist at heart, the idea of a world run by technology is a theory I find hard to come to terms with. Like many things that have been subjected to the super force that is technology, the field of journalism has fallen victim to it as well. In this week’s blog post we discuss the aspect of ‘Automated Reporting and/or Journalism’. Prior to delving into the topic at hand let us first understand the concept of the ‘Industrial Revolution’ and the influence it has had on what we know as today’s world.
The plague of the technological era was orchestrated and manifested in the late seventeen hundreds in Europe. The Industrial Revolution, best described as the era in which technology began taking over, resulted in a major decline in man power requiring jobs. This meant that during this period of time not as many people were employed for manual labour as there was a mechanical replacement in place for such duties.
The very impact of the development of technology in our day to day lives is still very evident, even in this century. More specifically if one looks into the field of journalism, a profession that many would assume would never in a million years be powered by technology is infact driven and thrives on the support of technological reinforcemnets. This is where the principle of automated reporting stems from.
What is it? How does it work? The immediate thought that comes to mind when one thinks automated reporting is the work of a reporter being done by high tech, effecient robot which is partialy correct but theres more to it than just that. These ‘robots’ or computers in the words of Tow Center for Digital Journalism, take algorithms and utilise them in creating automatically produced news.
The next question that comes to mind is: What does this mean for human journalists? Certainly, as the industrial revolution has done, it would result in a loss and decline of employment. A loss of appreciation for genuine journalism and journalists. That is if the industry fully warms up to this concept. Which is not ideal for purists such as myself. My idea of reporting and journalism as a whole is rather traditional, in the sense that what I read, what many other citizens read is the story of a relationship between mind, hand, paper and ink. What depth and appreciation can one find for content that a meek robot has generated, an invention of man that, mind you, does not possess the creativity that you and I both do.
Apart from the general down fall of this entire idea being of job losses, what happens to authentic, thought out, heart felt reporting? Where do they go. So before one gets entangled in the fast paced society we currently reside in that is so heavily influenced by technology, we ought to remember our fellow human beings. Many must agree with me that the idea of the invention of technology was not for it to dictate to us what we consume.
Stop! Take a breath! Regroup!