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In a time where freedom of information is on decline all around the world, the Nordic states remain on top of the list over countries with the highest level of press freedom.
Hundreds of Norwegians and Russians arrived in the first week of February in the town of Kirkenes on the Russian-Norway border to see the spectacular installations, to visit unusual exhibitions and to speculate about the future of the Arctic territories at the international art festival Barents Spektakel.
Multimedia era has come
On October, 11-16th the Nordic Centre of Journalism and Barents Press held a seminar «Multimedia journalism». 14 editors of Internet sites from Murmansk and Arkhangelsk areas, Karelia and St.-Petersburg took part in an educational trip, having visited editions of large media holdings in the capital of Norway Oslo and the cities of Aalborg and Århus in Denmark.
Course participants visiting the educational center of journalism Update in Århus.
Verde Gang — World is moving
We visited TV stations and newspapers, the educational center with much speaking name Update, multimedia publishing houses, among which VG – the largest news project of Norway, newspaper Aftenposten, Nordjyske Media with the oldest in Denmark tradition of work on several media platforms.
We moved much — on foot much and by different transport means. Such style of the seminar in itself was a model of modern journalism: mobile, dynamical and constantly updated. Efficiency, mobility, interactivity — on these principles today our colleagues in Northern countries win readers, spectators and listeners.
To reach them, articles and materials are placed in social networks.
The largest news project of Norway is VG, which are the first letters of the Norwegian words «the world moves».
The VG World moves in the newspaper and on the Web-site materials for which are prepare by the same journalists. Their purpose is to deliver the information product to the consumer in the most possible operative way.
The result is that one and a half million users daily visit their Web-site and — a little less — one and three tenth million read the newspaper. Norwegians are proud of the fact that they have the biggest world number of readers of newspapers and sites in the relation to the country population as a whole — 88 per cent.
TV colleagues felt at home in NordJuske TV Studio.
Citizen journalists are claimed
The visited to the newspaper Bærums Budstikke in Asker, the suburb Oslo, and lecture of Peter From Jakobsen in the educational centre of journalism Update in Århus gave representation about features of local journalism. Professional journalists cooperate with local residents who become so-called «citizen journalists».
In a district of Northern Jutland there's an Internet site where the important everyday and public information is placed. Having marked on a site one's house, it is possible to learn, who from neighbors and for what price sells the house, in what shop products are cheaper today.
Organizers of a local concert or a holiday inform on the intentions and ask to support them with advice and direct participation. Someone's cat was lost. Among those who place this various information on the Web- site there are also journalists-fans.
The educational centre of journalism in Århus organised a course for them. Stories by citizen journalists appear none in local newspapers and are published on professional media sites. In three small towns there are 22 citizen journalists.
Norwegian and Danish journalists willingly address readers for help. Developing an article professionals ask to support them with information, using for this purpose SMS and virtual planning meetings with users.
Homewards – uploaded with new ideas
Evgenia Koskina, newspaper «Nsevernaya Subbotnaya», Polarny, Murmansk area:
– It was good to see different editions – both national, and local, and also different ways and methods of work. I'm willing to try and use new methods though we already used some intuitively, without naming them multimedia. For example, when one journalist prepares stories both for Web for the printed newspaper. I think we will go on working in this direction, perfecting skills, especially on our Web-site.
Lars Jespersen, editor-in-chief of NordJuske media
Michael Goncharov, Internet newspaper "Fontanka.ru", St.-Petersburg:- Participation in the trip expanded understanding of multimedia journalism. It was curious to se how it goes in Europe and what the result is. We will make our reporters to be MoJo :) Well and, basically, we understand now that we move in the right direction.
There is a strong desire to apply some the peeped ideas. It, first of all, principles of work with social networks in VG and Afteposten, ideas to use maps visualizing events in the city, both from Budstikka, and from Danish colleagues.
Visits to editions, conversations with really working journalists were most interesting. The richest ideas have come from Budstikka and Nordyske Media – they both do interesting work in local media market.
Svetlana Horosheva, the newspaper «Business Petersburg»:
- Representation about multimedia to journalism extended and got deeper, there were different ideas which I want to try and realize in my work. "BP" has already created amedia appendix of DP in our «Contact» social network so I can use my new knowledge there. The game gave a possibility to feel what it's liket to be the manager of the multimedia company. I felt nice.
In the educational center of journalism Update in Århus twe were told much new and all questions were willingly answered. We also had a chance to try roles of multimedia journalists. Each of three teams in the became an editorial collective of a certain edition — business, public and tabloid. In one city there are same events.
How to choose priorities? How competently to place the information in the newspaper, on radio and TV, on the Internet site? Who will inform details on the lost girl?
Who will become interested in the new big economic project in region thanks to which new workplaces will be opened? Who will call at the local pub to receive information from informal sources?
At the height of our rough work organizers of the game warmed it up with fresh events: first the demonstration at a city town hall passed in collision with police, then there was a car accident. Think, journalist, and — the main thing — operate faster: film with your mobile or videocamera, record with a dictophone and — inform! Be MoJo! Readers are waiting.
Dear Trine an Elena, thank you very much for brilliant work!
Tatyana Polkova, the editor of BPI Web-site
Photos by: the author