CMMW 2018: Use what you have to get what you want.

By: Ky'Wan Parker

A distance of nearly 1,200 miles was traveled to the Twin Cities in Minnesota for the College Media Mega Workshop. This was all for one message from the track on digital journalism. This is one of the most critical concepts to remember in any field of work, but especially journalism which is simply to “use what you have to get what you want”. This proverb is so straightforward that it’s hard to imagine content creators working harder and not smarter.

It should be no secret to anyone that the world is fully immersed in the digital age. Previous analog technologies are now converging into digital formats. Many millennial journalists are now at the forefront of creation and innovation with some of the best digital tools at their finger tips being apps. The motto “there’s an app for that” is not a signature phrase simply to be stated. In this digital age we must use what we have to get what we want. Let’s explore some apps that were made known in the digital journalism track.

One of the most compelling digital resources discussed in the track was Juxtapose. This application makes easy frame comparisons which helps storytellers compare pieces of media such as photos and gifs. Generally, this application is perfect for showing a change over time like the growth of a cityscape, forest growth, and even Atlanta’s Georgia Dome implosion. Juxtapose embodies the concept of out with the old and in with the new.

To further “use what we have to get what we want”, the track instructors Sarah Quinn and Amy Devault introduced Thinglink. It is self-explanatory. Pick a thing being media such as photos or videos and link something to it. This something could be an explanation of ideas, history, or concepts. Thinglink provides a means for content creators to boost platform intelligence by adding simple interactivity as users are able to click about to immerse themselves with the given media. This app is an innovative route to provide a project with attitude by allowing 3D video and augmented/virtual reality enhancement two of the leading innovative technologies of today.

The pinnacle occurred when the track attendees explores various methods of our generations gift to the digital age of course being social media. Now, we should know that social platforms such as Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube serve as a means for people to remain connected to loved ones and stay on top of trends, but what happened to reporting? No need to worry as these social apps have enabled users with the power of journalism and reporting what’s going on. According to Statista 78 percent of young adults between ages 18-24 use Snapchat to build a brand or grow an audience. Although Snapchat was slow to catch on, much momentum has been gained when using the app for recoding standups, gathering b-roll, short interviews, enchantment using geo filters, and gathering quick/witty vine like commentary.

In today’s digital age, the most common struggle for a journalist can be the illusion of not having access to the resources to create compelling content. Ya know, like the stuff we see on TV. Be assured if you are a content creator there are many resources right at your fingertips, most likely in the device your reading this article on. Resources we use everyday for communication can be repurposed. Try reporting using YouTube live then add a cool graphic using Juxtapose. The possibilities are endless as long as you use what you have to get what you want.