Missing the Mark

Today I’m going to rant. I go a little crazy when someone, under the banner of the esteemed Nieman Journalism lab, gives out really bad advice. Here’s the link,, but let me save you some time. This guy’s thesis is that online journalism doesn’t need conventional video storytelling, chiefly the techniques that are familiar to all of us from television newscasts, including standups. I checked out the source on the internet, and it turns out that Richard Koci Hernandez is a former still photographer from the San Jose Mercury news, who now seems chiefly involved with posting artsy videos online. I suspect he doesn’t think standups are necessary because he probably couldn’t do one himself if his life depended on it.
The fact is that technology has changed but human nature hasn’t. We still want stories that have a beginning, middle and end. We still want to know our storytellers, look them in the eye and judge their credibility. There is much more to online journalism than the tag words in a search engine. Just like the early days of TV news, when newscasts were little more than glorified radio in front of a camera, online storytelling will evolve. But let’s hope for something better than what this guy is envisioning.