Media convergence is defined in the simplest terms as the merging together of old and new platforms. In the journalism sector, convergence is seen as the coming together of traditional media forms such as print and broadcast with new platforms online.
To many journalists and other professionals working within the media industry, the term convergence carries a string of negative connotations- it has almost become the word that must not be mentioned, similar to the heinous Lord Voldemort’s title from J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series.
Over recent years, convergence and the transition to online content has seen the downsizing of many print newsrooms within Australia and the world. In 2012, the Australian media industry suffered a significant blow of redundancies, with approximately 1,900 jobs lost at Fairfax. In this past week even, more print journalists are at risk of discharge from positions at The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age due to tough times in today’s market- the proposal causing much controversy and seeing journalists strike in protest.
However, it should also be noted that in this digital era, the convergence of traditional journalism practice and online outlets should not be feared completely.
There are many positives that have come from the transition to online content. Stories not only feature printed content, but incorporate a range of multimedia elements. It is readily accessible and readers can interact with journalists and newsrooms instantaneously through social networking.
As technology expands, the world of journalism must readjust and welcome new methods for delivering the news.
Here is just one of many videos I stumbled across that highlights the concept of convergence between journalism and social media.