In today's digital world information is passed around quickly, with everyone trying to beat the competition to the finish line and report the incident first. Readers also fall into this trap, finding a snippet of information on any given news incident and then quickly moving on to the next. In the midst of all this instant gratification, we lose sight of the real story. That is where slow journalism comes in.
What is it?
Slow journalism is an approach that focuses on telling the entire story. Journalists working in the field often spend months or decades researching a story to ensure they gather every bit of information available. The finished product is detailed and informative, giving the utmost justice to the story, as well as the people and communities affected by the incident.
How is it different than traditional journalism?
Slow journalism gives a detailed narrative of what happened after the story is finished instead of quick changing updates every hour while the incident is occurring. Often with traditional journalism, you learn about an incident and some of the devastation it caused to the people and communities involved, but the story is never truly finished. Traditional journalism is fleeting, having already moved on to the next story while the previous one is all but forgotten. Slow journalism strives to finish the story by giving it a proper ending. Journalists in the field are devoted to the story and spend as much time as is necessary to uncover the truth and inform the public.
What are the advantages of slow journalism?
The most important advantage is the information and the story. The dedication of the journalists to spend years uncovering the truth for the public is admirable. Slow journalism often inspires those reading the story by creating a well-informed and intelligent public. The gratification of seeing a story to its end is the greatest justice to everyone involved.
What are the disadvantages of slow journalism?
Discovering how the journalist will be able to support themselves while living years or decades getting to the heart of a story is often challenging. It is also difficult realizing the story will not be discovered by the majority of the public. However, the gratification journalists have knowing their story will reach the public, even if it is a small public, is enough to keep them going.
In a world with fleeting news stories and incomplete information, slow journalism strives to expose the truth at the heart of the story, refusing to let those involved fall to the wayside and be forgotten. These journalists give a voice to the people by uncovering the truth so that we may learn and grow as a people and learn from our mistakes.