If you’ve been following our ACP journey last weekend, you may notice that something is different about my blog post than those of other editor’s. If you haven’t figured it out, I’ll tell you what it is: you will find no hashtags, personal Twitter handle, or Storify timeline accompanying my blog. You will find straight up words. Let me tell you why.
During Nicholas Whitaker’s keynote speech on Saturday, March 1, he referred to the generation sitting before him with phones, laptops and iPad’s balanced on their knees as “digital natives,” or those who grew up in the age of ever-present technology. Well, that may be my generation, but I don’t feel that I myself am a native to this landscape. I had a notebook and a few pens with me and my phone was (I thought) respectfully tucked away in my bag. While I used to take pride in my disregard of technology, the notion that this may pose problems for me in the future has finally sunk in. And this weekend’s ACP conference is to blame — or maybe I should say thank.
Like The Campanil’s online editor Melodie Miu wrote in her blog post, we are in the digital age of journalism. It is no longer approaching, the changes are no longer on the horizon. We have arrived. And for me, this means that I may have missed the boat. Or at least I’ll have to wait to catch the next one.
I spent much of the conference thinking about what comes next for me. As a graduating senior, I have to think about loan payments and the loss of the safety blanket that is education. So, I frequented panels that touched on these growing concerns. And time and time again, technology became a large part of the conversation. I learned how to build and maintain an effective portfolio (online), how to get a job (by showing all the technological skills I have!) and how to create a larger readership on campus and beyond (by upping my/our online presence). Basically, words — those lovely things I’ve devoted my life to — are no longer enough.
While I’m scared of the digital landscape, I’m trying to see the bright side of things. I do love a good web-out (my term for hours of aimless internet surfing — what are the kids calling that these days?) and I love the creative and interactive aspects of news outlets from maps to videos to audio and more. So, if I’m not a total technophobe, I can learn it, too, right? I suppose only time will tell.
In the meantime, I will be thinking about how to apply technology more effectively to our work here at The Campanil. I know there are simple things we can do everyday to not only hone our personal skills, but better cover our campus and engage our community. So look out, Mills, we’re back and ready to take on the impossible! Er, I mean, that easy stuff you all do everyday anyway.
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