D.C. area TV reporters go “backpack”

According to The Washington Post, under a new agreement announced in late 2008, WUSA TV was to become the first station in the Washington area to replace its crews with one-person “multimedia journalists” who will shoot and edit news stories sion their own.

The Post reported:

The change will blur the distinctions between the station’s reporters and its camera and production people. Reporters will soon be shooting and editing their own stories, and camera people will be doing the work of reporters, occasionally appearing on the air or on in video clips on Channel 9’s Web site.

Backpack journalists make inroads at CNN

In one more sign of a move to “backpack” journalism, CNN recently announced that it was doubling the number of its domestic news bureaus, from 10 to 20. But they’re not really bureaus, according to MediaLife Magazine:

[I]n a testament to these internet times, they won’t be so much bureaus as reporters roving about in those cities, without any real offices as such. They’ll be finding digs where they can, likely the odd spare desk at the local paper, where spare desks are increasingly common. …The internet and cell phones allow reporters to work from anywhere, and many do. These days some magazines are put out entirely virtually, with even the top editor working from a cubicle, often in his or her home.