I’ve been asking myself that question a lot lately, especially as we’re about to post our 300th episode. That’s what milestones are for, a time of reflection and looking at the direction you’re heading.
By the way, this is not an April Fool’s joke. This just happens to be the day when I found some time to write.
By any measure, It’s All Journalism has been a success. We’ve consistently posted weekly interviews for more than five years. Our audience has grown steadily all that time. We’ve had great conversations with many smart people about journalism, learning lessons that have certainly helped me in my job. The podcast has opened doors professionally — I got a book deal out of it. It’s provided a platform to discuss ideas and answer questions. Creatively, it’s been consistently rewarding.
So why quit?
The weekly show we launched in August 2012 began with lofty ambitions — we were going to talk to working journalists about how they did their jobs and learn together how we could face the challenges facing our industry. Ambitious, certainly, and maybe a little naive.
This last year has been particularly tough on our industry and the choice of guests has reflected that. We still try to book “how to” episodes to help people learn new skills. But more and more, I find myself seeking people out to talk about the bigger questions in our industry, topics about trust, transparency and “fake news.”
What got me thinking about the podcast’s future were three recent interviews, this week’s conversation with Ed Madison, author of Reimagining journalism in a post-truth world: How late-night comedians, internet trolls, and savvy reporters are transforming news, and two upcoming interviews with Carey Henniger of Storyful and Amy Webb, Future Today Institute.
All three conversations paint a bleak picture of where journalism is now and where it’s heading in the next five years, or more importantly, where it could be headed if things don’t change. I encourage you to listen to all three interviews and think about what decisions are being made in your newsroom and how you can affect real change there.
So, when will this podcast end?
Probably not for the foreseeable future. We’ll definitely do another year.
But the thing is, as journalism has changed in five years, so has podcasting. We’re doing our best to make every episode entertaining and informative. We’ve tried to tighten things up a bit from an editing perspective and keep the conversations focused. Still, I’d love to try posting shorter, more frequent interviews and bring more storytelling to the podcast, but that just takes time and effort. Most weeks, for me, but also the other producers of the podcast, it’s just enough to book and record interviews on a regular basis around a full-time job.