Think tank stresses journalism’s need for context

Martin Langeveld, a former newspaper executive, participated in a Washington, D.C. think tank that dealt with the future of news. “The Future of Context” discussion was mediated and organized by Matt Thompson, a fellow at the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri.

The theme of Thompson’s discussion was obviously context, meaning, journalism must embrace the ubiquity of user-generated content and the necessity of the link to sustain itself.

Langeveld noted several points of insight introduced by participants in the D.C. discussion. The self-inflicted technological lag being felt by print newspapers was one of the more obvious observations.

Journalists must nurture discussions with their audiences, according to Steve Yelvington, a strategist for Morris DigitalWorks.

“Newspapers in the past couldn’t tap into conversations very well, but now we can. By focusing energy on making people part of the conversation and building community, we raise demand for our product.”

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