Online journalism jobs – from the changing subeditor to the growth of data roles

The Guardian’s Open Door column today describes the changes to the subeditor’s role in a multiplatform age in some detail:

“A subeditor preparing an article for our website will, among other things, be expected to write headlines that are optimised for search engines so the article can be easily seen online, add keywords to make sure it appears in the right places on the website, create packages to direct readers to related articles, embed links, attach pictures, add videos and think about how the article will look when it is accessed on mobile phones and other digital platforms.

“… when the Guardian was print-only subeditors had to hit three or four deadlines a day. Now, 24-hour rolling news coverage means that every minute of the day is a deadline.

“”We have applicants now who have never worked in print,” [says Jonathan Casson, the Guardian’s head of production] “They might be young bloggers or video producers who are very adept technically but have not necessarily gone through the rigorous legal training, for example, that local newspapers provided.”

“…most articles are launched first and revised when time permits. Live blogs … usually go up without being subbed first. A dedicated subeditor keeps an eye on the five or six news blogs running every day,”

Elsewhere, Nieman reports on the NPR team creating news apps, and hiring for positions such as “ISO detail-obsessed, hyper-organized weirdo” (translation: people with data skills). In another piece Nieman reports on Argentina’s La Nacion DATA and the expansion of data-related roles:

“Two weeks ago, La Nación created a data producer position to spot and convert useful data that comes in via press releases, emails, or PDFs. There are 8 data producers in different sections of the newsroom, and the plan is to keep adding more.”

Cheryl Lowry (via Adam Tinworth) blogs about the rise of the content strategist:

“One question potential Content Strategists can expect to face in interviews is this: how have you measured and adjusted content based on metrics (conversion rates, customer satisfaction scores) with what tools (Omniture? Google Analytics?) toward what results (percentage sales increase or customer service contact reduction, with dollar sign preferably attached)? It’s not a question that writers and editors as creative workers have often had to answer in the past, but these  days, proving (and improving) the worth of your content is now an expected part of creative strategic roles.”

…and job ads at Mashable, Reuters Russia, and Slate include the following notable requirements – guess which is which:

  • “Helping develop new presentation formats for innovative story ideas”
  • “Juggle the demands of a live chatroom, private conversations with members, forward event planning and website updating”
  • “The journalist/developer will develop data projects and interactive features”

I keep a Tumblr of online journalism-related jobs at – all suggestions welcome.


1 thought on “Online journalism jobs – from the changing subeditor to the growth of data roles

  1. Pingback: Key Factors Affecting the Preparation and Delivery of Online News. « alishearer

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