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Critical Times? Changing journalism in a changing world, was held 2 to 5 December 2012 at Monash University Law Chambers,
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
The conference explored Critical Times.
The last 10 years has been a time of unprecedented change in a number of areas affecting the news media, journalists, journalism, journalism studies and journalism education. From the GFC to the Arab Spring, the News of the World hacking scandal and the social media revolution announced by the arrival of Twitter in 2006, journalists, journalism and the news industry have been beset by crisis - in trust, accountability and profits.
For journalism scholars and educators understanding and adapting to (or resisting) these challenges has become an almost daily experience. Critical Times? is an opportunity to reflect on and discuss the changes we have seen and the future we are facing.
The 2012 JEAA conference - Critical Times: Changing journalism in a changing world - explored themes around technology and changing journalism practice; ethics and accountability in the news media post-'Hackgate'; the shifting role of journalism in the world of social media and changing economic models. The conference will engage with critical issues of journalism's disputed place within and alongside academic learning, research and scholarship. Presentations, papers and panels are also welcome on all aspects of contemporary journalism practice and education.
No time to think: Does the speed of news churn make us stupid or are we absorbing more?
Accountability, trust and regulation: Journalism is on the nose; is there room for improvement?
No business like the news business
Journalism education on the front page
Martin Hirst is the Associate professor and journalism curriculum leader in the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin University. He is researching social media and journalism, primarily the take up of social media tools by young journalists and has a broad range of research interests including:
Martin is co-director of the Centre for Journalism, Media and Democracy and currently developing the centre's web presence. You can read Martin's blog at Ethical Martini.
Day 1 Keynote: No time to think: Journalism, news and speed in the US presidential race 2012
Charles Feldman is a Los Angeles-based investigative journalist and author. When he arrives in Melbourne, Charles will be fresh from covering the US presidential elections. He will update the 'no time to think' thesis in the context of the campaign coverage.
Day 2 keynote: Is there a journalism niche in your campus's future?
Professor Leonard Witt, Robert D. Fowler Distinguished Chair in Communication
Day 3 keynote: Unhappy families: The Murdoch, Fairfax and Packer media dynasties
Day 1 Panel: Accountability and independence: the new dialectic in journalism?
How to hold journalists and media owners accountable is a discussion as old as journalism itself. In some respects it is the 'holy grail' of journalism theory with a direct connection to practice. At the core is the issue of balance between free speech and the need to ensure that a powerful societal player accountable to the public interest. This panel will consider the recent Finkelstein and Convergence Review reports and recommendations.
Day 2 Panel: The business of citizen journalism
What are the business inputs and outputs of citizen journalism and other alternatives to the main stream? How are they connected to or divergent from the contemporary image of "the newsroom"? The panel - John Cokley, Janet Fulton, Bill Birnbauer and Leonard Witt (Robert D. Fowler Distinguished Chair in Communication at Kennesaw State University, USA, and the founder of the Centre for Sustainable Journalism) - will consider new approaches to creativity, sustainability, accuracy and ethics and how the mainstream news industry might successfully harness these new energies.
Day 2 Panel: How do you gather news during an uprising? The use of social media in reportage of the Arab Spring
This panel discusses the social, political and cultural ramifications of journalists' interactions with activists and social media during the various 'Arab Spring' uprisings and their meaning in a digital media age. Panelists will present new analyses of the changes and tensions that have occurred in the relations between the different forms of reportage during the different 'Arab Spring' protests. The panel will critically examine the supposed dichotomy between what is perceived as the authenticity, authority and credibility of traditional journalism and the efficiencies and audience-driven content of alternative media practice.
Day 2 Panel Discussion: Digital-first journalism: The view from the newsroom
Chair: Dr Penny O'Donnell, University of Sydney (co-author, Journalism at the Speed of Bytes)
The conventional newspaper business model, which holds there is a "sweet spot" where investment in editorial produces both business success and a well-informed community, is under severe strain as advertising migrates online. This panel of news editors will examine how the shift to digital-first journalism is transforming the business logic, structure, staff profile, and work routines of traditional newsrooms, shaping the operations of new start-ups, and reconfiguring editorial priorities and practices across the news industry. Multiplatform delivery, editorial leadership, reader engagement, and online news standards are identified as four conundrums of the change process.
The Walkley Foundation's recent report Journalism at the Speed of Bytes, based on a national survey of newspapers, found variance in the ways journalists deal with user-pays news, technological change, loss of editorial resources, and greater contact with readers but unexpected consistency in professional outlook: despite grave concerns about the current disinvestment in journalism, newspaper journalists firmly believed more could be done to improve news content, exploit the interactive potential of digital technologies, train staff and beat the competition. These findings suggest that, contrary to gloomy predictions about the death of newspapers, there is much to be learned about the emerging shape and significance of digital-first journalism from careful attention to the change processes underway in converging newsrooms.
Panel: Ms Amanda Wilson, former Editor, Sydney Morning Herald, Ms Orietta Guerrera, Editor, National Times Online, Fairfax Media, Ms Lauren Martin, Editor, The Global Times, A/Prof David McKnight, University of News South Wales (co-author, Journalism at the Speed of Bytes).
Day 3 Panel: Journalism & Media Communications Discipline Standards Project
Chair: Rhonda Breit
This is the first information session on the Journalism, Media and Communication Network (JoMeC). JEAA has been awarded OLT (formerly ALTC) funding to establish a sustainable network of discipline scholars in the fields of journalism, media and communication. The project aims to:
1. Review and benchmark pedagogical elements of journalism, media and communication programs in Australia
2. Liaise with discipline scholars from other fields and develop an online learning and teaching hub for discipline scholars in journalism, media and communication to centralise relevant pedagogical, technological and organisational infrastructure and resources to support learning and teaching leadership and excellence in Australia;
3. Develop systematic discipline standards for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Australia that encompass journalism, media and communication;
4. To enable JoMeC to advocate for learning and teaching and to develop leadership capacity and offer expertise in addressing national higher education priorities.
Discipline Scholar in Creative and Performing Arts, Professor Jonathan Holmes, from the University of Tasmania, will be joining us as part to explain how the discipline scholar network operates. He will be joined by members of the JEAA project management group.
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Registration is closed.
2012 Rates below
|Day Rate (member)||$355.00||$410.00||$460.00|
|Day Rate (non-member)||$485.00||$535.00||$585.00|
The call for papers is now closed.
The conference themes for JEAA 2012:
No time to think: the 24 hour news cycle and the erosion of journalism's democratic function. In a time of unprecedented and interlocking global crises, is journalism serving the public interest to the best of its ability?
No business like the news business: the global news industry is seeking new ways of remaining profitable; at the same time alternative journalism(s) and alternative business models are struggling to emerge
"I didn't do it." Accountability and independence: In the wake of 'Hackergate' and police inquiries into corruption in the British news industry and interminable reviews into journalistic standards here in Australia, what can be done to arrest the decline in public trust for journalists and journalism?
Journalism education on the front page: journalism education has been in the news lately, some might say for the wrong reasons. What should the relationship between journalism academics, journalism education and the news industry look like?
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Associate Professor Martin Hirst
Journalism Discipline Coordinator
School of Communication and Creative Arts
Faculty of Arts and Education
Melbourne Burwood Campus
Phone: +61 3 9244 6460