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  • asked in Media 8th Mar '16:

    How is "Data Journalism" affecting how news is being reported?.

    Stella Paul replied 8th Mar '16:

    I think the effect varies from one media outlet to another. To begin with, some media outlets - including some of the world’s largest and most popular - still don’t have a layout to incorporate infographics. So, for journalists working there, the new, enhanced focus on data is an uncomfortable issue: they are working harder than before to gather new data and credible statistics because this is now in demand. But all of these remain hidden in texts and with that, their extra effort spent on data gathering gets no visibility.

    But the outlets that have created a special space for data in their format, things certainly seem to be livened up. In my eyes, it as a win-win scenario for all: the readers get the data that matter to them - credible and presented in a way that is clear and easy to grasp. The journalist gets his extra efforts noticed. As for the media outlet, I believe, the ‘value addition’ certainly helps widen and solidify their reader outreach.

    If we talk about negative effect, then there are many journalists who hear a lot of terms like ‘data’, ‘big data’, ‘data crunching’ etc, but have no idea what they really are. These are mostly journalists who file a lot of ground reports and therefore have the ability to produce a lot primary data (an extremely valuable element especially where the government is hostile or incapable of providing enough data), but are barely ever considered for a data training. Such situation is creating a rapidly growing “data divide” in the world of journalism. The sooner we notice and plug this, the better.

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