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Transforming Production

Trint's whitepaper explores the intersection of technology and journalism. Learn how the production process has been transformed for journalists and what tools they are using to drive this innovation.

May 19, 2022

Journalism is all about getting the words onto the page – or more often, onto the screen. From typewriters to the software and platforms used today, the digital revolution has hugely impacted how journalism is produced. And as A.I. begins to make waves in the newsroom, it's more important than ever that the technology works.

Trint's whitepaper on the intersection of technology and journalism explores how technology makes journalism easier and how its continual evolution is essential for reporters to keep up with their audience's demands.

"Young reporters today are expected to be able to do a lot of things that reporters in the past would never have had to do," says Trint's Director of Content Daniel Fisher, "You're expected to be the reporter, the sub-editor, to write your own headlines. And you're sometimes expected to report six stories a day."

The whitepaper's third chapter, Transforming Production, looks at the tools that can really make a difference in such an intense work environment.

Content Management Systems (CMS) have undeniably had one of the greatest impacts when it comes to a journalist getting their words written and published. They're easy to use collaboratively, easy to customize, and can have tools like digital advertising platforms plugged in. But whether a newsroom chooses to develop its own bespoke CMS or rely on an open-source model can have a big impact on its process.

The whitepaper explores how a broadcaster's CMS is relied upon so heavily that it can make or break a newsroom.

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The challenge for investigative reporters

Management tools can also help with the management and organization of journalism at the production stage. For investigative journalists, in particular, organizing sprawling information from as many as 50 interviews for just one story has always been a challenge.

Ten or Twenty years ago, reporters would have used the classic whiteboard method to record and connect their information. Now, they're learning to experiment with new tools designed to help manage content at this scale.

In the whitepaper, David Ritsher, Senior Digital Editor at the Center for Investigative Reporting, explains how this technology works. "We're still using the same idea of breaking your story into different blocks, and then moving those blocks around," he says. They're just able to use technology and software platforms to streamline and enhance this process.

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Managing information overload

For investigative reporters, the challenge of scale created by the digital revolution is the definition of a good problem to have, as more data collected, stored and leaked presents big opportunities for reporting.

Since the WikiLeaks scandal, there have been numerous 'data dumps' over the past decade. But the volume of information that comes from these leaks would be impossible to manage without technology that maps and processes the data for reporters.

But the scale of the modern data dump is sometimes too big, even for some sophisticated software. So some journalists are responding to the digital revolution by taking advantage of new tools to work together and collaborate. In the Trint whitepaper, we explore the different platforms reporters use to collate and share vast scales of sensitive information.

"[We need tools that] keep a tight control of who has access to that information prior to publication, and manage it in this international multi-platform multi-country way," says Ritsher.

 

Preparing for a smarter future

A.I. is already in use for some discrete newsroom tasks, and many journalists and news organizations plan to build A.I. into their current production flow. Though there's nothing as effective as a journalist when it comes to understanding and contextualizing data, advancements in A.I. prove that humans no longer need to spend their time organizing it.

This chapter of the whitepaper explores how embracing tech like Trint and other A.I. tools in the newsroom will transform the speed and efficiency of getting a news story to press. Delving into what tools are being used and the way to fit these into your workflow.

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Download the whitepaper here