No new media skills? Perhaps, no job.

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NBA teams rely on new media to inform, and attract, fans. So do franchises in the NFL, MLB and NHL.

ESPN, CBS, the New York Times, and the Chicago Tribune are also creating websites for everything from prep to professional sports to inform, and attract, readers. Some newspapers offer niche publications connected to their main news sites, like the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s website just for Packers Fans. And Florida Today has a popular site that covers Little League baseball in Brevard County.

So why are you not presenting sports news from your campus in more than one (print) platform. Because it makes you feel uncomfortable? Because you do not know how to do it? Because you always wanted to write for a print publication? Because you do not want to get a job when you graduate?

“If you look at the big screen and the small screen, it’s just an extension of the other,” said Dan Gilbert, owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers. “It’s not a competition. The big screen is for events, the ‘Wow.’ But if you want to drill deep, you’re taking out the little screen for all of that supporting information. It works hand in hand.”

Check out Patrick Stiegman’s story on the Associated Press Sports Editors website that details how sports franchises use new media. Stiegman, the executive editor and producer for ESPN.com, says sports journalism starts with good storytelling. But, Stiegman writes, sports reporters should embrace new reporting methods to help tell these stories.

Technology is a means to an end, and editors must continue to they make smart choices, provide orientation for users, offer perspective and interpretation of the events of the day and assign reporters to be the independent observers of the world, sporting or otherwise.

At the very least, develop a sports blog. If you are a weekly or monthly, cover all campus sports events on this blog, writing them as if you were filing a story for a daily publication. On this blog, you can also supply sports news on your school’s teams. By doing this, you will be filling a need (and creating a niche), regardless if you are at a major university, a junior college or a high school. You will be offering news, analysis and game coverage readers cannot get elsewhere.

If you are a daily newspaper, you can add details from practices, break news, cite weekly awards, present quotes from weekly conference calls, and offer recruiting news on this site. Either way, you will attract readers and gain valuable reporting experience.

Eventually, you want to be able to also supply slide shows, podcasts and video as part of your coverage. And on the highest end, you may, eventually, want to learn Flash to develop packages or analysis such as this one on Boston.com that tracks every home run by Manny Ramirez. (Very cool. Very informative.)

But you can’t play if you sit on the sidelines. So check in now. Go to wordpress.com and create an account. Or, go use Blogger.

Reporting and writing skills are essential to everything we do in journalism. But, now, those skills are also going to be applied through multimedia approaches.

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One Response to “No new media skills? Perhaps, no job.”

  1. Career Tips: Be one with new media : Sports PR Blog Says:

    […] On Sports is a blog that shows students how to cover sports and recently suggested that if you don’t know new media, you won’t get a job. Now he was talking about those hoping to break into the sports journalism industry, but don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to apply that to the sports PR industry. In his post, he linked to an article uploaded for the Associated Press Sports Editors that gives 15 editorial principles to help guide sports editors with generating content on all levels and growing an audience. Before getting to the principles, an anecdote was given about dialogue at a sport and technology conference. Shuddering at the recollection of the mandated promotions to the award-winning Web site from CNN’s air, Blitzer confessed having high anxiety. “I kept wondering,” he said, “Why would we want to send people away from CNN?” … […]

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