Journalism we don’t teach at journalism schools

Authors Piet Bakker
Publication date 2013
Research groups Quality Journalism in Digital Transition
Type Lecture


Although basic features of journalism have remained the same over the last decades, the tasks journalists perform, the skills they need and the position they have within news organizations have changed dramatically. Usually the focus in the discourse on changes in journalism is on skills, especially on technical multi-media skills or research skills. In this paper we focus on changes in professional roles of journalists, arguing that these roles have changed fundamentally, leading to a new generation of journalists. We distinguish between different trends in journalism. Journalism has become more technical, ranging from editing video to programming. At the same time, many journalists are now more ‘harvesters’ and ‘managers’ of information and news instead of producers of news. Thirdly, journalists are expected to gather information from citizens and social media, and edit and moderate user-contributions as well. Lastly, many journalists are no longer employed by media but work as freelancers or independent entrepreneurs. We track these trends and provide a detailed description of developments with examples from job descriptions in the Netherlands.

Language English

Quality journalism in Digital Transition