Understanding newsroom convergence

Convergent journalism, also known as integrated journalism, encourages journalists to think laterally in different channels and to publish across a number of platforms.

For Quinn and Filak (2005, pp. 4,5), convergence is not limited to the level of storytelling or presentation, but can also apply to the information gathering process. Demo, Dailey and Spillman (2003) propose that convergence is the highest level of a continuum of collaboration that includes (from low to high): “cross-promotion”, “cloning”, “coopetition” and “content sharing”.

The term “convergence” can also be applied on the level of media ownership, such as in instances where media companies merge with other companies to maximise the mutual benefits of amalgamation.

The term can also refer to the process of technological advance by which multiple pieces of digital media equipment are functionally subsumed into fewer pieces of equipment. In some settings, media practitioners are required to be multi-skilled, working with a range of equipment.

They are also expected, in some cases, to be relatively comfortable functioning across various kinds of communication channels, such as mobile content, multimedia blogging, micro-blogging, electronic mail, electronic newsletters, traditional and internet newsfeeds, news alerts, social networking, personal webcasting, traditional and internet radio, user-generated online encyclopedia entries, content curation communities, video-conferencing, podcasts and file sharing services (pp. 24-25).

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