Curation in Journalism

I don't have any easy answer as to how to save the newsroom, but I agree with Mike Masnick that most traditional newsrooms are underrating the role of curation.

Unfortunately, for the most part, newspapers seem to look down on "curating" as if it's some sort of lesser form of journalism, and this is a sticking point that they're going to need to get past if they want to understand how people engage with the news today. These days, everyone is a curator of the news in some fashion: they share news, comment on it, post about it, etc. But they also look to the "pros" to add more value to it as well. But if the traditional press looks down on this function, they won't do a particularly good job of it. It's sometimes tough for a press who used to want itself to be "the final word" on every story to admit that others may have reported it better/faster, as well as the fact that sometimes it's better to involve the community, rather than treating the community as riffraff waiting for the word from the god-like journalists.

It's telling when you have respected reporters for the NYTimes and other established news institutions taking to personal Twitter accounts or blogs to do curation because their employers won't feature their curatorial output.

The web has long been kind to curation, first in the form of weblogs, now in multiple forms including Facebook and Twitter and Tumblr. Good curators make the web more intimate and interesting and navigable, and value accrues back to the curator even if that's all they do. That traditional newspapers have turned their noses up at this role is one reason they've seemed, at times, like the stodgy grandparents of web journalism.