Alfredo Trivino, the Director of Innovation for News International, based in the UK, displayed incredibly unique ideas that currently exist on the fringe of journalistic practice. He affirmed that journalists should “explore how gaming narratives and experiences help to deliver new journalistic genres and new educational formats.”
Peter Espina, the Head of Design for China’s Global Times, talked predominantly about the explosion of Weibo, an Asian form of micro-blogging that is heavy on creative visuals.
Mike Logan, the Content and Business Development Manager for Next Media showed off some of the creative video-game representations his news organizations had accomplished the past few years. Thomas Loudon, the editor-in-Chief of the VJ Movement also showed recent revolutions in the “video and cartoon revolutions.”
Loudon perhaps summed up the gist of the presentation best: “We’re not selling videos and cartoons, but independent journalism.”
The demand for visual story-telling
Alfredo Trivino, Innovation Director for a UK news firm, argued the current state of journalism demands a commitment to visual creativity.
“Information by itself isn’t valuable anymore,” Trivino explains. “There is too much content, too perfectly predictable, but too little time to enjoy it.”
He elaborated by showing a fringe form of journalism where one “explores how gaming narratives and experiences help to deliver new journalistic genres and new educational formats.”
Animating the Missing Video
Hong Kong journalist Mike Logan had the opportunity to show off what his company, Next Media, is doing on the visual creativity frontier.
He highlighted animation, citing his organisation as a unique producer of video-game representations of traditional news, most specifically their work in 2009 after the Tiger Woods car accident.
“That’s how we use animation,” he said. “(We animate) the missing action because often when you’re doing news, you’re missing a crucial part of the video.”
Blogs are Changing Print
Peter Espina, the Head of Design for China’s Global Times, talked about how the Internet’s booming blogosphere has affected traditional journalism.
“We must figure out how the blogosphere makes sense in print,” he said.
Espina argued that to do so newspapers must embrace visual creativity and see the “news through the eyes of the blogger.”
As proof of this changing journalistic tide, he mentioned the Asian social media site Weibo and, specifically, its popularity and utilisation of personal audio and video files.
“Weibo is the voice of the people in China,” he says. “It’s useful because you get first-hand information from a variety of users.”
This information, he said, is almost exclusively visual.
What to Expect From Visual Journalism
Thomas Loudon of the VJ Movement focused his efforts to argue that visual journalism could potentially overtake “traditional news media.”
He discussed current news and how uninteresting they are, saying 80 of news shows are “a waste of time.” In his mind, two developments — specialisation and YouTube — have aided in the evolution.
“YouTube is the best example of how visual journalism is taking over,” he said. “Eventually, they even may eliminate traditional news channels.”
If he started his company today, he said, he would “just stick with a YouTube channel and forget the rest.”
But despite the impetus toward visual innovation, Loudon maintained that the core activity of both his company and visual journalism as a whole, is the careful selection of correspondents.
“We’re not selling videos…” he said, “but independent journalism.”