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These stories were written by high school students participating in NEPM's Media Lab, in partnership with MassLive.

Journalism is always changing

Nirvani Williams, Report for America corps member, working at New England Public Media's newsroom.
Alexander Fernandez
NEPM's Media Lab
Nirvani working at New England Public Media's Newsroom

This story was written by a high school student participating at NEPM's Media Lab Summer '23 cohort, in partnership with MassLive. It was first presented at Media Lab's Showcase.

As the world adapts and changes, journalism is also changing with it.

Nirvani Willliams, a New England Public Media (NEPM) journalist, gave insight on how she perceives journalism has changed. She is assigned to produce radio news stories about socioeconomic disparities in Western Mass. Individuals experiencing social economic disparity are those who have a low income versus high income and experience different levels of access to resources and opportunities. As a journalist, Williams shares her view on journalism in the present and why being a reporter is such an interesting career. As with many careers, working in a newsroom, we need to change while the world changes because if they don’t they won't have jobs. The audience they have now is not the same they had 5 years ago.

“I mainly used to do a lot of visual work. So I use DSLR cameras to capture videos and take a lot of photos… Now I'm working with a Tascam audio recorder. And then I pretty much take pictures just on my iPhone and not a DSLR. Yeah, it's fun.”, Williams said.

Her job changes as fast as technology does. Years ago some journalists would have needed to buy an expensive camera but now cell phones can capture high quality audio and video without needing to spend a lot of money. Mobile devices proved helpful during the pandemic. When everyone was challenged to use technology in their daily lives, journalists were forced to learn how to conduct virtual interviews.

Nirvani was used to going out and talking with people in person but when COVID happened she had to interview people online. This was a big change for journalists because they had to come up with new ways to do their job.

When running into a creative roadblock Williams said “oh, maybe I can use Chat GPT to think of some titles for like, maybe what to call the housing series. We didn't end up going with any of them.” Instead of taking a break from writing, Nirvani turned to AI to brainstorm. Even though she didn’t use any of the headlines, embracing new technology helped her out in her work. “It can be hard to adapt to technology changing constantly. But during the pandemic, you know, everything really changed to being online”, Williams said.

Williams is just one of many journalists that have to adapt with the new world to keep their job.The world is adapting and changing, and journalism is also changing with it. As you see reporters are forced to learn digital tools to keep up with the fast-paced changes in this world.

Learn more about our partnership with MassLive.