Looking Ahead to the Future of News at NewsTECHForum

Dec 22 2020

Change is inevitable in our industry as we embrace new technologies and consider the needs of viewers, which may differ from generation to generation. With the pandemic hitting in early 2020 and the subsequent evolution of the world around us, the change we come to know and expect was accelerated. Newsrooms in particular had to think about how to evolve while still delivering consistent daily coverage for audiences who were looking for reputable sources to share the latest updates.

Those changes from 2020 and how it informs the future were the focus of a NewsTECHForum panel featuring Bitcentral Founder and CEO Fred Fourcher. As part of the panel, titled News 2022: The Reshaping of Programming, Technology, and Audience, Fred and other industry leaders from CBS and NBCUniversal Television Stations, Graham Media Group, and SmithGeiger discussed what shifts from 2020 have led to industry-wide pivots, and how those changes give us a clue to what 2022 newsrooms may look like. 

It’s incredible to think we’ve experienced 10 years of transformation over the past 10 months– something no one could have predicted. Fred doesn’t think we’ll be going back to where we were at the start of 2020 and believes the changes are for the better, noting two distinct “doublings” in recent months for Bitcentral customers. 

One of those changes is the amount of content produced in the field, rather than in the station. The other is the amount of content shared between stations within a group.

If you think about some content that you already own being utilized more, that’s a good thing,” Fred said. “It doesn’t cost you anything more to do that. And content that goes within a group differentiates itself from national or network news.”

Cross-group content sharing doubled this year; the practice gives viewers unique content to watch while building out newscasts through diverse sources so the same information or stories aren’t repeated over and over again. As Fred noted, with 144 spots to fill in a rundown on an average day, the need for fresh and interesting news stories never ends. 

And, the need to think differently about capturing and using content was heightened this year. Like SmithGeiger’s Seth Geiger noted during the panel, local news has become one of the most trusted and most used platforms for information during 2020. Before the pandemic hit, 72% of Americans tuned into local news once a week; this year, that number reached 92%. 

Newsrooms also had to think creatively about how to approach story ideas, sometimes collaborating over Zoom meetings that could accommodate many more participants in the planning process than before. And, when bringing those stories to life, relevancy and helpfulness is just as critical to the story as facts. Helping viewers understand not only what is happening, but how it relates to them, has become much more important in the structure of the newsroom and how these groups approach potential stories.

Find out what else this engaging and educated panel had to say in their panel discussion – you can watch the full conversation here.

And if you’re looking for a new way to take control of your media operations and news production, we can help. Click here to schedule a conversation with us today and learn why Bitcentral is one of the industry’s most trusted and innovative software providers, helping the biggest names in broadcasting. 

About Bitcentral, Inc.

We are Bitcentral—one of the video industry’s most trusted and innovative software providers. For more than 20 years, we have helped the biggest names in broadcasting create workflows that maximize the value of media. With our industry-changing solution FUEL™New WindowFuel – Bitcentral, we’re bringing our innovative approach to video to the digital world to create an innovative curation process—and an extraordinary viewing experience. In addition to FUEL, we are part of everyday news operations with our Core News™New WindowCore News – Bitcentral solution, the No. 1 news production platform in the U.S. reaching millions every day, and Central Control™New WindowCentral Control – Bitcentral, which provides a flexible toolset for master control operation with modules to execute all the processes that converge into playout. Bitcentral is based in Newport Beach, California, and its Latin America headquarters is in Mexico City. Schedule a demo today with a Bitcentral expert to see how FUEL is revolutionizing digital streaming for the present and the future. Learn more at Homewww.bitcentral.com.