At our event earlier this week, we were fortunate enough to be joined by four industry experts to discuss the future of journalism, along with our latest research project into the topic. Panelists included Jack Gillespie, Vice President at Bustle UK, Georgina Holt, Publishing Director at Stylist, Jon Bernstein, Journalist, Editor and Consultant, Omar Oakes, Global Technology Editor, Campaign who were joined by David Gosen, CCO at Cxense.
Lack of positivity among journalists
The lack of positivity reflected in the results of the research didn’t seem to be a surprise for anyone one the panel with Jon Bernstein commenting that “7% of journalists feel like they have job security seems too high,” the rest of the panel agreed.
Omar Oakes commented that he felt that it greatly depends on who owns the media brand, as a privately owned company will have different concerns to a publicly listed business.
Deciding on the best content
The type of content that is published is influenced by a number of factors including data and what the audience is talking about online, but ultimately it’s up to the editors and journalists who know the audience best, according to Jack Gillespie.
For Stylist, it’s about creating a unique spin on a news narrative to keep content fresh and relevant to the audience. “We think about the Stylist angle,” commented Georgina, “it’s a very data-driven but fun process.”
Omar commented on the need for editorial integrity, which he admitted can be tough for some publications when there is also a need to drive advertising revenue. “The companies need to realise that we write about what is interesting for our audience, and this is the same audience that they are trying to reach with advertising.”
Underestimating the duopoly
“We made a mistake. We assumed that Google was simply a search engine and Facebook a social network, but in fact, they’re ad platforms. We can’t ignore them, they are too big and too powerful,” commented Jon Bernstein.
Georgina mentioned that Stylist are trying to move away from relying on Facebook, but realise that if you don’t have a good relationship with Google and a great SEO strategy then you have a problem as a business. “If you look at the ad revenue made from journalism content, the balance of power is terrible, and these companies are making millions.”
Overall the event and research provided some insight into what journalists think about the future of the industry, and gave us the opportunity to ask questions about what they are experiencing in their current roles.
To find out more about the research, download the full report: