The New Newsroom

One of the challenges for newsrooms in the 1990s was the introduction of pagination technology.  While it was clear that pagination equipment would change how the newspaper would be produced, many managers failed to recognized that installing the new software (and the computers to run it) was an opportunity to rethink the workflow of how a newspaper is produced.

At 1993 Seybold* conference in San Francisco, I gave a talk titled “The New Newsroom.” The subtitles on the PowerPoint was my focus:

* How technologies are changing organizations.
* How organizations are changing technologies.

I argued there was a need for a new type of worker and that managers should worry more than print — audio, fax and video.  Remember, online services were just starting.

My last slide called for “techno-evangelism” and finding the leadership within the newsroom to make the changes needed.  And is a foreshadowing of my future, the slide had these bullet points:

* Teaching yourself.
* Teaching your staff.
* Teaching your boss.

*Seybold Seminars was a leading seminar and “the premier trade show for the desktop publishing and pre-press industry.