It seems the future of journalism as we know it is hanging in the balance.

Notable media experts, including the ABC’s Kerry O’Brien, spoke about the emergence of new technology and its impact on the industry at a student symposium at QUT today.

Katherine Browning reports.


Challenging and exciting but with an element of anxiety, that’s how Kerry O’Brien describes the future of journalism.

With new technology, such as wireless internet and portable media players, academics have long been predicting the demise of newspapers.

Others disagree and say newspapers – like all news media – may stay with us for a long time.

Cathie Schnitzerling, Director of News, Channel Ten: “I think we were very worried that when radio came it was going to kill newspapers and when television came it would kill radio and when internet came it would kill us all.”

Guests at today’s symposium stressed that print and broadcast journalism are not dead, just changing.

But Kerry O’Brien warned there are some things that should never change.

Kerry O’Brien, ABC Journalist: “It is the quality that’s fundamental, it’s the accuracy that’s fundamental, it’s the breadth that’s fundamental. And it counts for nothing getting news faster if the news you get is inaccurate.”

Experts from all platforms of the media admit the future of the industry is fraught with uncertainty. But they remain positive about the outlook.

Veteran journalists agreed they need to put their faith in the ability of the next generation of journalists.

Kerry O’Brien, ABC Journalist: “I think there’s an enormous wellspring of potential in the generation of young journalists coming through, absolutely.”

Katherine Browning, QUT News.