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Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

Here’s a tweet that cheers me immensely:

Core message for journalism on social media says @BethAshton #NewslabMCR

— Alison Gow (@alisongow) October 16, 2015

Beth Ashton – who created the slide – is a former student of mine. She was one of the very first generation of Interhacktives I taught at City back in 2012 and 2013. I don’t think she’ll mind me saying her talent wasn’t immediately visible in the lecture room – but, my goodness, did it shine through when I marked her first piece of assigned work.

Her skill in combining social media and journalism has led her to a rapidly rising career, and she’s now the (highly successful) social media editor of the Manchester Evening News.

And you know what? She’s exactly right about this. Too many people on either side of journalism’s digital divide talk as if traditional, print-centric journalism and online journalism are completely operate things – a venn diagram with no overlap, if you like. And that’s complete nonsense – disinformation spread by the politically-minded or the afraid.

We’re in the midst of a long process of separating what are the characteristics of good journalism, from the characteristics of good print journalism, and then discovering how they’re best expressed through a new, complicated and ever-changing medium. And that’s an exciting challenge. Hard? Sure. But that’s part of what make sit exciting.

But there’s still a core of commonality that we mustn’t lose sight of.

[via David Higgerson, who applied this to local journalism – but I think it’s a wider issue than that.]

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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.