Print journalism ‘more prestigious than online’

A poll by the syndication website greatreporter.com shows two thirds of reporters still think print pips the post in prestige over web journalism…

In the online poll, 66 per cent of respondents said they agreed with the statement: ‘Print journalism is more prestigious than online'.
A quarter of voters said they didn't agree with the statement, and a further seven per cent said they were undecided.

Richard Powell, managing director of greatreporter.com parent company Presswire Media, said: "I feel the public holds print journalism in higher esteem than online, so therefore as a writer you get more credibility for getting published in print."

Greatreporter.com also asked a number of journalists in both print and online their views on the poll's findings.

Paul Hill, foreign manager of The Daily Telegraph, said: "There's not much doubt about the two. Print journalism obviously has a long history and journalists have a deep commitment to that and will stay attached to their newspaper as long as they can unless circumstances change.

"Online hacks seem to be a younger, graduate breed who, dare I say, scour the internet rather than their own experiences as a reporter, for knowledge.

"I rather think, for example, that doors would open more readily for The Daily Telegraph in corridors of power rather than for Get Your News Here Dot Com."

But BBC News Online’s editor-in-chief, Pete Clifton, says he disagrees with the statement, adding “great journalism should be celebrated on whatever platform”.

“[Good reporting] can be important, interesting and engaging in print or online, it can also be rubbish on either,” he says.

“But there are things which make online journalism particularly exciting. The immediacy, the ability to make it interactive and to get readers involved in dynamic ways, for example.”

Guardian Unlimited’s editor-in-chief Emily Bell also thinks online journalism is the way forward.

“With audiences, ideas and journalistic formats developing more quickly online than off, journalists who really think print is more prestigious are going to find the next decade stressful and disappointing in equal measure,” she says.

Paul Merrill, editor of the men’s weekly magazine Zoo, says he thinks online journalism is being unfairly judged.

“The situation is changing, and more writers will eventually see the merits of working on websites rather than in magazines or newspapers,” he believes.

The survey’s respondents were drawn from greatreporter.com’s 2,000 registered members, who use the site to syndicate and sell their work worldwide.