News or knowledge curator?

I’ve been reading a bit about how news organizations are having to define the role of editor in the 21st century, i.e. Editor 2.0.

This is a significant shift – one that we in education need to take note of! It’s important because it goes beyond plugging in some web 2.0 tools, like blogging. If the world is awash with information, is being filled with blogs and other media that help keep people informed, and is being enveloped by online social networking as the community ‘glue’ that binds people together (admitedly we are now not talking about the average educator) then newspapers needed to do more than just go online (which all significant papers have done) , and then add some widgets and gadgets.

Having worked as a ‘subbie’ for the Medical Journal of Australia many moons ago, I can only begin to gasp at the changes taking place in media reporting. Imagine being a ‘search’ or ‘tag’ editor!

Scott Harp gives a good run-down of The Editor as Curator of ALL the news on the web. But one of the most radical shifts taking place is that editors are now being asked to curate OTHER news organization’s content in addition to their own.

Scott explains further that Media is now about distributing the BEST content — and the New York Times has embraced this new reality with the launch of its new technology section, which incorporates third-party headlines surfaced by Blogrunner (which the Times acquired very quietly last year — and which uses a TechMeme-like algorithm based on link patterns) and then selected with input from Times editors.

Now all of this is amazing, the more so when I think about how teachers in schools normally undertake ‘media studies‘ with students. The idea of blended aggregation sitting beside what is now ‘traditional’ reporting is (I’m tipping) a very new concept and not included in mainstream/core curriculum.

So really, we teachers need to pick up the pace somewhat – so that we can operate rather like the Times editors, if we are to be knowledge AND news curators for our students.

We need to read, gather, create, and deliver news and information far more creatively, as well as to teach the students to recognize what changes are happening in media reporting.

To help you think about it, drop on over to Will Richardson’s nice example of what a teacher (or student) can do, in his nice example of  news delivery for Darfur via Pageflakes.


Photo: Wall Street beauty

3 thoughts on “News or knowledge curator?

  1. I see one problem, which is that media vectors such as the NYT provide ‘opt in information’, so the user selects their interests. In schools, I see teachers using the web (in their off class time) to indulge personal interests – sport, eGay, shopping etc., They are not making the connection between PD Networking (Twitter, Facebook, SL etc) and their own professional practice.

    Most are interested in leeching information for class, mostly chopping down Wikipedia content or Google and throwing it into student handouts or at best a Power Point. Most materials are still photocopied and ultimately lost by students.

    It’s obvious to me that a sequential blog or ordered slideshare works better for students to scaffold their learning.

    So being a news bringer is seen as an intrusion on their normal activity. It is mildly interesting, but something that they may add to their professional practice – one day.

    In the mean time, they seek out timely and relevant vector information for the rest of their lives, they don’t do the same in their professional practice, as many are still using resources they developed on paper eons ago.

    I agree that they should do as you blog suggests, but first it needs to be mandated as part of their professional practice within the ‘system’. They just don’t apply what they ‘demand’ when looking for personal interests – into their Classroom IMO

  2. thanks for this, it helps sharpen my awareness of the professions which are becoming 2.0-ised… editor2.0, library2.0, education2.0, revolution2.0 … bring it on!

  3. Pingback: Great Article - Teachers as Aggregators? « Yovie’s Weblog

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