What is innovation in journalism today? I heavily debated that question with Dan Gillmor and Retha Hill earlier this month while judging the Scripps Howard Awards at Poynter.
The 44 entries in the “Digital Innovation” category we were judging were some help. But not as much we had hoped.
The top of the list, thankfully, exemplified the award criteria of finding “fresh, engaging” ways to do great journalism. What does that look like? Think Snow Fall from The New York Times, which ended up winning the award. Big data projects from ProPublica, narrated graphics from the Los Angeles Times, the killer iPad app by Reuters, Bloomberg’s infographics, and News 21’s interactive video trailer presentation also had the judges uttering words like “stunning,” “mind-blowing,” “amazing” and “powerful.”
What set them apart from the rest of the entries was the way that each one found a creative — and effective — way to use a digital technique or tool to tell a story or convey information.… Read more