Go towards the readers

When the traditional press saw itself in huge disadvantage within the monopoly of the everyday news, upon the appearance of the world wide web, a new phenomenon became noteworthy in that field of social communications: the hierarchy of news was left in the hands of the audience, not the media, changing the main model that lasted for many decades.

The new paradigm is totally inverse to the previous one, in which the reader was the one who had to “reach out to the news, not the news to them”, as the Mexican journalist Esteban Illades tells us: back then, he had to either pay for a copy of the newspapers placed on certain shelves or borrow them from a neighbor, but even being in the streets and listening to a crier speak out some events could do.

In his book “Fake News”, Illades says that, in contrast to that traditional model, the chosen scheme has changed its axis and now the focus is the audience, a heterogeneous mass of users that gets served the news and other contents directly from the media, without having to put effort into looking for them, unlike the readers of yesterday used to.

Now the priority of traditional media that have reinvented themselves by creating their own sites on the web, is to “listen to the audience” and, consequently, follow up the news that seem to matter the most, without depending on the hierarchical level that the traditional media label them on.

Assisted by technological algorithms, meant to tell us which are the most seen, read and visited contents, and by the mechanisms of interaction with users, it is easier to keep track of the events that capture the interest of the wider public, which allows us to offer a sequence to a history, until it’s resolved satisfactorily, if necessary.

This has generated a better exercise of journalism, because the traditional media are challenged to maintain this model, to the most favorite stories or events, using a great diversity of resources such as videos and info-graphic databases, plus strengthening their informative jobs and publishings by performing deep researches first, which is not very commonly done on the Internet.

Hence, the premise of the traditional press becomes more solid when it takes advantage of the rigor and pros of the verification of data accuracy and context, which results in the best adaptive response to this new paradigm.

The prioritization of what’s vital and successful in the web, in no way, can make the media lose their accuracy, relevance and hierarchy of their content.

On the contrary, the essential thing is to serve the users or readers what they’re certainly looking for, because that’s the philosophy of our trade: to inform the public with the news they should know and to articulate with the audience to better understand their needs.

We live in a time where the socialization and the web: fulfill the role of being the vectors of those purposes.

The media, without isolating or being left out of the process, also have to aim for reaching wider audiences, for which they should prioritize their best asset: the credibility and depth of the contents they offer, thus elevating the journalism of high quality to its maximum dimensions.

– Translated from Spanish by Randy Rodríguez.