Lessons from journalism in 2016
As the year comes to an end, we asked journalists across the United States to share some of the lessons they learned during 2016. These are their biggest takeaways. (Updating through Jan. 4)
 
2016 wasn’t the worst of it
By: S. Mitra Kalita
"My main journalistic lesson of 2016 is to brace for massive upheaval and redefinition. What we’ve just seen — the election, fake news, red feeds, blue feeds, mistrust, niche sites, the so-called end of the mainstream — have implications for all of us in the fourth estate."
We can't let this moment change us
By: David Greene
"As journalists, we seek the truth. We are not advocates for a particular person or position. We are watchdogs who rigorously report on facts and use the truth to confront power. And we are listeners who foster dialogue and allow people — like Eileen Eagar — the freedom to think out loud."
Pulse made me question everything
By: Christal Hayes
"It's still hard to believe Orlando is home to the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. Even six months later, it's surreal to think 49 people were killed at a club I pass every day on my way to work. The shooting changed Central Florida forever and with it, transformed our newsroom and reporters."
The big upsides to a small city
By: Melody Kramer
"I see story ideas everywhere I turn, and I talk to many people who aren’t journalists (which is a great way to hear what kinds of stories resonate and how to tell a good story in a way that makes sense)."
 
The key moments for journalism
By: James Warren
"This is the year we discovered the fundamental truth of cyber-space: We are all connected there, but no one's in charge there."
We must collaborate
By: Andre Natta
"If the local and regional news ecosystems were healthier, national news organizations could rely on community newsrooms for boots-on-the-ground expertise. And smaller organizations could turn to their national counterparts for specialized help."
Lessons from 40 years of writing
By: Roy Peter Clark
"...Here is what I thought about newspaper writing way back when. With all the changes in journalism since then, let’s see how many of my conclusions still hold up."
Lessons from the war over Tronc
By: Rick Edmonds
If newspapers are crashing, why "were both sides willing to push hundreds of millions of dollars on the table in the fight?"
It's time to stop saying "old media"
By: Kristen Hare
"This year, one of the biggest lessons I learned by stepping inside those newsrooms was that having a paper product doesn't equal being or thinking old"
There’s power in vulnerability
By: Katie Hawkins-Gaar
"Every time I got real in a newsletter, I received a handful of lovely, heartfelt emails and messages from friends and strangers alike."
Culture changes everything
By: Ren Laforme
"How many great ideas (or great people) has this industry squandered because nobody has noticed or embraced them? Can you imagine if a caveperson, exhausted from chiseling, held up the first wheel, only for everyone around to let out a dismissive sigh?"
The fate of sports media is unclear
By: Ed Sherman
"Setting the Cubs aside, the lesson on the sports media front is clear: There are no sure things anymore. Even ESPN and the NFL aren’t immune."
The year in Facebook
By: Sonali Prasad
"2016 was a momentous year for Facebook. Journalists watched as the social network laid out a series of news values, dealt with fake news, changed its trending topics and tweaked its News Feed."