Digital Journalism Blog: Convergence

The name of the new TV news channel that will serve the needs of teenagers aged 13 to 19 is TeenTV. This news channel aims to inform and educate teenagers but also entertain them. For that, new techniques would be used, such as engaging ways of storytelling and multimedia treatments in the online channel’s website. To gain an audience but most importantly to keep one, a relationship/interaction with them has to be built.

Firstly the stories that TeenTV will cover have to meet the interests of young people and for that the channel will run a questionnaire in their website of which stories/themes they would like to be covered. After these findings the channel would make a decision on what stories to cover. However TeenTV would also have prior stories that we think would engage our audiences. These are: national and international news; technology/science; sports; education; health and celebrity/music.

National and international stories would be covered by the news channel but not into too much detail, unless there was breaking news or something really important that should be told (natural disasters, elections, conflict). For this in every bulletin a new angle or a new national and international story would be pursued. Even though teenagers can get bored with these type of news our mission would be to inform and educate so these stories would have to be covered for their benefit.

Technology and science stories are usually interesting for teenagers as they are on top of the new phone that has just come out or the new programme that has been released. When covering these kind of subjects we would offer an in-depth coverage but also programmes where reviews would be given by different experts on the matter. An accurate and impartial report is what they would expect from TeenTV.

Some teenagers, majority boys, do or watch some kind of sport and because of that these type of stories would be covered as TeenTV aims to meet the audience’s interests. Teenagers from 13 to 19 years old are in an age where they spend most of their time studying, for this reason education stories that might affect them or any policy changes would be covered by the channel in order to maintain them up to date. TeenTV would often look for stories on health and entertainment (movies/TV shows, music and celebrities) in our editorial meetings aiming to keep its audience connected to the channel. After the questionnaire if any category doesn’t fit into the results it would be given less prominence in the channel.

All this would be covered by the TV channel but also by the channel’s website, so cooperation and communication between broadcast and the online team would be maintained at all times as a convergent newsroom demands. For that our team of 10 journalists would be divided into 1 broadcast editor (responsible for the broadcast content and in checking scripts as well), 1 presenter, 2 producers, 1 audiovisual editor that would also be the assignments editor (responsible for the visual content and for assigning reporters), 1 social media editor, 3 multimedia reporters (responsible for producing content for broadcast and online) and 1 online editor (responsible for online content and for checking the stories).

The online channel’s website would complement, add and explore the stories being covered in a more in-depth manner. Online combines the immediacy of broadcast with print’s capacity to give people detail and background information. A multimedia treatment has to be given to every story in order to help the audience to easy understand the stories. Video will be used, but not a copy of the broadcast video, we don’t want to repeat information that has been broadcast, our aim is to complement and diversify. Audio will be also used along with slideshows, infographics, interactive maps, quizzes, games and polls. A section for comments and feedback would be also available as interaction between the media provider and the audience is something we would praise.

Please see below an example of how TeenTV would cover a new report that just came out about a rise of 20% of unsuccessful students in the country.

For TV: we would use a package with the reasons for the rise, interview students, teachers and government authorities. It could be added a live report from a school where this rise has been noticed.
For online: We would have an interactive map showing in which schools this is a reality. More detail and background information with text, video and audio clips of interviewees would be given. A monitored (to avoid inappropriate language) online forum would be provided where they could put their input on this issue.

The multimedia reporter would be the one to gather the video, audio and do the interviews on the local (school for example). However the ones at the newsroom could be making phone interviews and doing the interactive map and other relevant research (for the online).

One thing that would be also different is the way of reporting: writing for broadcast is not the same as writing for online, so this issue would be addressed as well. News values and professional ethics would be maintained in our convergent newsroom, however an urgency to report would be at the centre in this kind of environment.

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