It's challenging wrapping your head around today's media landscape - not because there are too many changing dynamics, rather rarely does one exhaustively explore the subject.
Earlier this year the Columbia Journalism School and Tow Center for Digital Journalism released a 122 page paper called Post Industrial Journalism: Adapting to the Present. Written by C.W. Anderson, Emily Bell and the seemingly omnipresent Clay Shirky.
The paper is a serious, exhaustive and joined up inquiry into what is the role of journalism today and what are the models that may exist tomorrow.
It is an exceptional piece of work. A sober review of the state of the industry pulling together the full picture of what we each know in pieces. A picture that only an outside party free from commercial/proprietary interest can clinically pull together devoid of salesmanship and jargon-ism.
The histories and functions of journalism and advertising have long been intertwined. Thus it is imperative any self respecting advertising professional takes a proper look at the shifting dynamics. It is too easy to look at the dynamics in fragments or superficially.
As it is an exhaustive look at journalism it is also exhausting to plow one's way through it. It has taken me weeks (though I've done some other stuff too during that time...)
Thus I've concentrated the 5 hour read to 5 minutes with my selection of the 21 most important quotes in this PDF:
What is compelling when reading the paper is any time they reference a journalism term, say newsroom, and you replace it with an advertising equivalent, such as agency, or journalist = creative, the points couldn't be truer.
The most resonant point that comes through repeatedly is that adding some digital technology to your existing process doesn't make you digital, you have to fundamentally rework your workflow to reap rewards. Additionally, and lastly, at a time when many are just winging it you do need a workflow but allow the system or practice of its use to be hackable when benefits ourweight the restrictions of the workflow.