Someone, somewhere, is still waking up early, folding newspapers into little bundles, and flinging them onto people's front stoops. We can imagine he's an old fashioned newsboy, riding a bike, wearing that canvas satchel across his chest, but let's be realistic: he's older than that, he's driving a car, and he's stuffing the newspapers into his customers' mailboxes. Still, it's rather romantic—he's there, because people still do read newspapers in print, and people still receive their paper delivered to their door.
But for everyone reading that print newspaper, many more people now prefer to consume their news off a screen, by reading the digital version of their paper. This version contains everything its print counterpart has—reporting, writing, editing, news judgment—but it's also got audio and video and links, and updated stories breaking every moment, and interactive graphics and features, and real-time reader comment sections, and blogs by the journalists, and connections to social media... and much, much more.
In this third chapter of the book, with the basic understanding of good journalism under our belts, we'll move to lessons in digital journalism.
But I'm not teaching the lessons this time!
I have been working hard to keep up with the changes in newspapers in the digital age, and I'm doing okay—I'm learning. My students, though, are far, far ahead of me. Having grown up consuming the vast majority of their news on the Internet, my students now begin the course more familiar with online journalism than print. So I asked them to contribute to this section of the book. Eric Ouyang, Phillips Academy Class of 2013, now a student at Harvard University, wrote the first section, an overview of the new digital landscape. Gabriele Fisher, also in the Class of '13, now at Stanford University, wrote a section on citizen journalism. You can hear their voices in their prose in the pages that follow, and I'm sure you'll see why I am such a lucky teacher...