As the digital transformation of media enters its third decade, news audiences have become both consumers and producers of a diverse array of media. Today’s converged environment has blurred the lines between news writing and persuasive writing. Media professionals must now be able to create and deliver content that is accurate, relevant, and on point for fragmented, time-pressured audiences. Throughout this text, we underscore the fact that professional media writing is not the same thing as amateur media writing. The informal writing you do for friends on social media or in your personal blog may be fun and entertaining.
If applied properly, it can help build your abilities to choose the right words and to assemble coherent sentences. Professional media writing, by contrast, requires a highly developed skill set and the ability to produce pieces that are accurate, ethical, thorough, clear, and tailored to your audience’s media preferences. Professional writing strategy is driven by an understanding of your situation and audience. These may appear to be daunting challenges, but with diligence and focus, you can meet them. You may be reading this text simply because your adviser said you needed to take a media writing course, or because your program requires it.
This is all right, as well. No matter which way your life unfolds, you must learn how to be both a skilled media producer and a savvy media consumer. Consider for a moment the flood of online content you encounter every day. It is produced not only by official media organizations, but by people like you. As a media producer, you might be working on a blog that you fill with posts on a given topic. Maybe you publish your own videos or post on Instagram to publicize news events or personal causes.