Friday, June 20, 2008

UK journalists leading the way with blogs and video, says European study

Journalists in the UK are more likely to be producing video content and blogging as part of their workload than their European counterparts, a new survey has suggested.

According to the European Digital Journalism Study, 61 per cent of UK respondents said their publications offered video or TV content as part of their online presence compared with 41 per cent of respondents from other European countries.

However, over three quarters of UK respondents said that producing additional multimedia content for the web was the biggest challenge to their jobs.

The report, which surveyed 347 journalists in nine European countries, suggested that UK journalists are leading the way with blogging as 85 per cent said journalist blogs were now a feature of their websites.

However, only 10 per cent of the overall respondents - and 14 per cent of those in the UK - said they had received training for producing multimedia content.
The research, conducted by PR firm Brands2Life and their European partners Oriella PR Network, asked broadcast, national, regional and trade media journalists in Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourgh, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the UK questions on how the 'digital age' was affecting their work.

The study is the first of its kind to look at pan-European approaches to digital journalism and provide a snapshot of multimedia working across Europe.

In addition to writing blogs the survey also suggest that blogs have become a staple part of the journalist's newsgathering process. Around a quarter of those surveyed regularly quoted from blogs and a third using them to source stories.

The UK respondents in particular cited using blogs and other new media as a source for stories as one of the biggest changes to their work in the 'digital age'.

The study found the biggest impact of digital growth on journalists' work was the amount of content they are now expected to produce and an increased importance on exclusive content.

Journalists surveyed in the UK followed this trend with 76 per cent saying producing more content is the biggest change - compared to an average of 46 per cent elsewhere in Europe.

"The survey results reveal a counter-intuitive insight. Journalists are now expected to produce more, have less time to research stories and are expected to learn and incorporate new media techniques, such as podcasts and pieces to camera into their everyday routine," stated the report.

"However, despite the increased demands this change is felt to have had a positive impact on the quality of their work."

The results of the survey are available in full on the European Digital Journalism Study site.

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