Sound bites on the future of news from California Broadcast Fellows

Published on
June 1, 2009

The first seminar of the California Broadcast Fellowship this weekend elicited debate on many health-related topics. But the future of news -- how multimedia and Twitter alongside shrinking newsroom budgets are changing what it means to be a journalist -- created some of the most robust conversations.

Here are remarks from a few of the fellows to get an online conversation going -- you can add to the discussion by commenting here or by participating in the Reporting on Health forums.

Perrine Bakhshay, reporter and producer for Torrance CitiCable 3

"How do you recalibrate in an industry that is evolving so quickly, where multimedia is becoming everything, where journalists are expected to do so much more than they were originally expected to do? How do you meet those expectations, maintaining the same standards of quality? I think those are questions that it's important, vital, critical that we as journalists ask all the time, so that we don't lose anything in the translation process."

Michael Alexander, executive producer and host of

"I love the conversation. What's most interesting to me is that you bring together fellows from all different platforms -- from broadcast, from print, and then us, from new media -- and we all have to deal with the realities of what's happening. And what's happening is that the current definitions of news, and media and broadcast media are falling apart. How do we forge a new direction, and a new conversation and solutions together? To me, that's all part of the creative process.

"I think one of the best things that [fellowship] programs can do is talk about us as brands, individually as journalists. The day and age when you could get a job at a media outlet and be there for 40 years are gone. This is a brand new economy -- you can't just say, "I'm a great writer," because it doesn't matter. If the economics aren't there to support you, then you're going to have to build other skill sets -- branding and marketing yourself, how to be a free agent, how to manage your time."

Bianca Alexander, executive producer and host of

"When new media and old media come together and they clash, out of that can be learned something that none of us have ever done before, that none of us have ever experienced before, that will actually allow us all to elevate the dialogue and elevate the reporting.

"There was a social media session that was great, but that session was a little too small to hold all the energy in the room. People were tweeting and linking in and it kind of got a little out of control, but that's a good thing. It shows that there's a so much more people want to learn about these things and so much more opportunity to delve into these cutting-edge issues."