The tree at the end of my street refuses to make up its mind. Over the last month, all the trees around it have slowly changed colors and shed their leaves. But not the one on the corner. Some of its leaves refuse to give up their green color…denying the fact that summer is over. Another section is fiery red, the one next to that is bright yellow, like a stubborn streak running through it. I love that tree. Each time I jog by (okay, more often I’m walking), I feel a little better about the indecision that seems to be a reoccurring theme in my life lately. I’m not just talking about what I mentioned in my last blog. Everything around me seems to be in a strange transitioning phase. That tree reminds how colorful and beautiful that phase can be.
The changes going on in the journalism world continue to fascinate me. I belong to the generation (no, I’m not admitting to being a Millennial) that is actively embracing the technological advances that enable journalism to share information in unprecedented ways. One example..Twitter. This week marks my account’s six-month birthday. Since then it has moved away from the fad label and much closer to becoming a mainstay of journalism. This week I learned about a new application, Twitter Lists. Tweeps (the hip term for people who twitter…no, I don’t like it either) can aggregate up to the second information on a topic of their choosing by creating their own lists or following one that someone else made. A few I’m following:
@mikesolakian/aasb: My friend (and colleague) Mike Solakian put together a list of all the people on AASB, a campus organization we are both involved in. So if I want to see what they’re up to, I can easily find their latest updates.
@Newsweek/nwk-foreign-affairs: This one is Newsweek’s collection of people tweeting about things going on around the world. There are columnists, reporters, and diplomats and all I have to do to see what they’re saying about the global issue of the moment is go to this list, and it collects the tweets for me. Awesome!
I think Twitter is great, but that’s not the fascinating thing for me. I love the part of the transition that isn’t changing. Kind of like the roots and the branches of that stubborn tree down the street. They are solid. While they grow, they remain constant. They represent the pillars of journalism that were the same as they were in 1950 and the ones that I’m confident will remain in 2050. With each new season of leaves--social networking, live blogging or new standards of acceptable editorial voice--the strong branches of storytelling and curiosity and skepticism remain.
More on that in Part 2 of this post…
Thanks for reading.