This spring I attended quite an historical event. Arne Krumsvik, a fellow PhD student, former journalist, editor in chief defend his PhD. Arne has been an editor as well as director for several years. To see him standing there and getting the black belt of knowledge within multimedia journalism, was wonderful.
How many practising journalists and editor in chiefs have a PhD? Not many. There is a huge gap of knowledge when it comes to the changes happening in the world of media, maybe in particularly among many journalists.
During his defence, one of Arnes answers to his academy opponent was that it's time for journalists to look beyond the newsroom. They should try to realise how the role of the journalist is changing day by day, and also reflect upon what is happening with the media economy and in the board rooms It made me think about the time I was working as a journalist, doing my daily plight of work. Deliver, deliver, deliver – and never asking those overall important questions. Why should I? More and more I felt like a passenger on a plane whose only aim was to get there, but not so much wanting to know how we got there. Who wants to contact the pilot to get more information about that banging noise from the engine?
As a hard working journalist I felt I couldn´t care about the constantly changing technological advances. It was enough to do the daily work.
But Arne is right, not only because of his vast knowledge and practical experience but because even passengers on a plane seems to forget that the chance to survive actually increases with information. You could for instance open the door and jump.
(My metaphor in this blog is carefully chosen in Arne's honour. One of his many skills is being a pilot. – to follow his pilot blog: http://krumsvik.com/fly.html).