If you're a journalism student hoping to build a career today, it's really important that you keep up with the industry. This means checking to see if a magazine is still in business before you write a query letter, and regularly reading websites like Romenesko on Poynter.org, the media section of the New York Times, David Carr's NY Times column, and other sites like mediabistro and the Wall Street Journal, wsj.com, and this one.
You should probably also be thinking about ways to do your own thing, partly because the technology lets you do it, and partly because "old media" is still in the process of blowing up. Even if you don't end up running your own site, the lessons you'll learn in the process will make you a valued employee.
In the Entrepreneurial Journalism Class, the excitement is building. Students are now developing their sites and getting ready for the competition in early December. They'll present their projects to our panel of judges, who will advise them on the content and execution, and they'll choose two that they think are the most marketable.
We've been looking at other successful sites, non-profit news operations like the New Haven Independent, Minnpost, and Voices of San Diego, as well as niche sites like Gonomad, Budget Fashionista and GigaOm.
Five years ago, there wasn't much information out there for people who wanted to create their own thing. Now there's a huge body of knowledge on this topic. (Although there's still not a lot out there on how to financially keep an operation going. It would be nice to have some more user-friendly ad placement networks.) Anyway, here's a good starting point.
Over at the Online Journalism Review, The top 10 key lessons for hyperlocal journalism startups from the Online News Association Conference.
The title of this post is one of the tips.