Creation, destruction in the digital age

technology / Article

From Eric Newton, VP of Journalism, Knight Foundation:

At Harvard, Shorenstein Center's Alex Jones gets attention for his latest book, Losing the News. The Pulitzer winner and Harvard prof describes the "erosion" of traditional news media. (See too President Obama's remarks at the Walter Cronkite memorial.) Shorenstein is trying to improve the future of news as part of the Carnegie-Knight Initiative on the Future of Journalism Education.

At Yale, the "creative" side of the story of the "creative destruction" of news media is explored by Richard Foster, past McKinsey exec, in books like'' Innovation: The Attacker's Advantage . Foster has been talking for decades about how some companies are destroyed by new competitors but how others survive.'

In his book, Jones writes: "The Knight Foundation, which is dedicated to journalistic priorities, is helping uncover all kinds of new models for news that will engage and also stay true to the essentials. The most encouraging aspect of Knight's enterprise is that new ideas poured in when they offered funding for pilot projects, which is a demonstration that news remains exciting as an ideal and a vocation. People want to do news, and this time of transition has been a catalyst for creativity after far too long when the traditional media were too comfortable. Being terrified as prompted more energy and innovation in the news business than ever."

Knight is funding the pilot projects Jones talks about under our Knight News Challenge. Apply here.

Look for more on the state of the nation's information health in the upcoming report of the Knight Commission of the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy.

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