Get online and adopt and oldie

A sad, poignant but vital post by Paul Conley (via Bryan Murley at ICM) which put’s an interesting slant on the march to web first newsrooms.

Many of the journalists I know have adopted a strange, delusional vision of their value. I could say that they are in a state of denial. But that hardly describes the sorts of things I hear from people.Rather, I think it’s fair to say that these folks — veteran journalists with years of experience — have moved from denial into fantasy.

They’ve gone from being stubborn about adding new skills to being rigidly opposed to any change in their job description. And they cannot see the damage they are doing to themselves, their peers and their publications.

Bryan sums it up this way

There are plenty of good journalists out there who are downsizing themselves because they won’t (that’s right – won’t) learn new skills, adapt to change

But the impact isn’t just on those leaving. Those new to the game suffer too. Paul picks up on a post by ‘new’ journalist Meranda Watling

Thing is, the industry is being flooded with “kids” like me. Bright-eyed and ready for anything, willing to take everything on and to become an expert on whatever you put on the budget with our name beside it. Willing to learn. If there’s someone there to teach us.

It’s easy to see how the cult of the new can shove aside years of experience, just look at the TV vs. the web debate.  In the broader debate of online v print it is often the case that we are trying to avoid letting those died in the wool people build museums to themselves by refusing to move on.  Maybe we can open a few more doors as well.

So if you are a young journalist then adopt an oldie. You never know. You both may learn something.