Writing about Technology: A Reporter’s View
Whenever the word technology is mentioned, we think of computers and mobile devices. People have different perspectives that come to mind. To some technology is easy, others think about coding, to some it’s about convenience during shopping and others it means efficiency. Technology has grown in our world so much that we depend on it every day from when we wake up to when we get to sleep. Technology started back in the day during the introduction of EDI – electronic data interchange, which involved the exchange of information between companies electronically. As reporters, we try our best to report on technology content so that the public understands what changes to expect and how the changes will impact their daily lives.
The technical jargon is too complex for people to handle. Articulate marketing is important, especially to businesses that need to come up with content, web design and digital marketing. However, people in IT or using IT should find a common ground where they meet their customers and audience without confusing them or losing them due to too much technical jargon. Writing for a wider audience needs to be done so non-technically bearing in mind you want your content to reach a wide range of audience. In the recent past, it used to be costly to get hold of a reporter who is ready to publish your story or market your products and make it available to the market. Though, print media is still important the emergence of social media has seen people build companies from home and make it to successful businesses globally. Paper editing service is still available, though very much in existence in the digital platforms.
Technology is the ‘in’ thing in this era and it is spreading faster with trends changing every waking day and applications are developing on each passing each day. Longtime reporters have to adapt and change the way they present their news, but at the same time, they need to be careful not to be rendered irrelevant by the technology. Reporters have to quickly adapt to new mechanisms to maintain jobs and still continue bringing relevant news to the public. New graduating reporters need to focus on the basics of good reporting because they have been in existence during all the technical jargon language thinking it is normal for everyone. Here are important points each reporter needs to consider
Simplify the technical language
- Reporters fall into the trap of explaining the components of a story without a proper conclusion. For example; if it is a product you are describing all its components, but very little on why you should buy or use their services. Also, there is very little explanation whether it is good value for money.
- Readers have less time to focus and concentrate on reading a 2,000-word content page. It is understandable that you want your readers to really understand what you are talking about, but do it by choosing the right words. Choose a few words which can easily be understood and break down the content into sections so that a reader can easily identify the information they seek.
- Avoid acronyms and jargon because you find them easy to use. Do not assume that every reader will know what you are talking about and this could be dangerous especially in your career. Shorthand and buzzwords should be avoided at all costs at the same time what you think it means to you could have a different meaning in another place and this may jeopardize your career as well especially if the audience misunderstands the language.
- You don’t need to use complicated sentences or long words to be seen as smart. Using shorter sentences and words make one seem smarter and intelligent because they seem to know what they are saying.
- Use illustrations when necessary to clearly demonstrate your content.
- Give a background to content to bring the reader up to speed on what you want to write about and why you are writing about it.
Robots are catching on fast and have succeeded in interpreting the complex data. At the rate which robots are automated reporters risk being replaced with robots which can automatically formulate news.
Keep on improving your reporting skills because the digital world is seeking to venture into electronic commerce. So be ready for these opportunities when they come up. Time is of the essence in the digital world because journalists and newspaper staff have had to change their work and keep the audience out there on developing stories rather than waiting for the next print media publication. There is a need that you keep reinventing yourself in the industry moving with the technology to avoid being ruled out as irrelevant and risk being replaced by newbies or robots.
The development of numerous apps has led to a change in the way news and content is transmitted to the audience. The industry is changing and soon some companies might be forced to lay off reporters and most of them get paid to proofread content. Journalism is undoubtedly going to continue though, the sale of print media seems to be reducing daily. Technology is an innovation that has aroused the common interest of the public who in one way have become reporters in their own way because they love uncovering stories by telling them and sharing them. Though there is a difference between news produced by a random digital platform user and a professional reporter.