Journalism definitely is not dead.
It’s not dying either for that matter.
In the age of the coronavirus, true journalism is even more important than ever. The Government has classed all journalists who are reporting on the Covid-19 pandemic as “key workers”. The classification means journalists’ work is considered “critical to the Covid-19 response”.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “Public service news across TV, radio and print has never been more important than it is right now.”
In circumstances like this, many put their faith in the media to get the message around the country quickly and truthfully.
While journalism is objective, social media is currently full of opinions. Every event is instantly captured from a dozen angles and many interpretations, and there is still plenty of #fakenews. As reported last week Twitter is blocking tweets which spread inaccurate information around the coronavirus, preventing the outbreak from looking worse and to help the public get accurate information and avoid myths.
Mainstream media play a vital role in keeping the nation informed and the growth in numbers of people turning to trusted, recognised news brands shows how much value is put in the reputation established over decades for factual, reliable information.
For readers stuck at home, journalism will become a lifeline. While the younger generation have the luxury of accessing a wealth of content on the internet, the older generation will be relying on print newspapers, TV & radio to get the latest updates.
The NUJ reported that industry representatives have reported they were currently “experiencing record demand for news”.
Print readership figures will no doubt be down over the next few months as many people aren’t leaving the house daily, but those of us lucky enough to be safely socially isolating at home are consuming more online content than ever.
The variety of content media are putting out gives perspective in times of crisis, with many key media titles choosing to keep spreading messages of joy. For example, BBC Radio Manchester is reporting daily on the things in the region that are making a difference and the MEN also has a feed on the amazing things the residents of Greater Manchester are doing.
In Daisy’s blog earlier this week she discussed the need to keep talking to consumers during this uncertain time, and the new norm for content creation, and it’s clear there certainly hasn’t been a detox of consumerism.
There are so many opportunities for people and brands to work with these trusted journalists to get meaningful messages out to the public, and it is the job of the PR to make sure the messaging and the content fits the current landscape.