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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Convergence is Key

This year in the new media center, we’re trying to focus on convergence. This is a new system where we share volunteers and work together on stories with ARN and Neon Tommy. It’s a good system with good ideas, but we’re still working on getting the kinks out.

 We start out the morning with having ARN come into our morning meetings, and suggest stories with us. They also sometimes send reporters to the stories ATVN covers, or they’ll ask for sound from certain stories. It’s a really easy way to share information, and everyone works well together.

 When volunteers come in, they check

in with the producers to see if we need any help. If we don’t, they check in with our awesome convergence leader Marc to see if ARN or Neon Tommy needs any help. This is where things can get kind of tricky. Sometimes volunteers go right to Neon Tommy or ARN without asking us if ATVN needs any help. Often times we have lots of things for volunteers to do, so they should always check in with us first! On other occasions, we’ll say we don’t need someone and they switch to another outlet, but then when we do need them, they’ll be working on something for someone else.

 I think the key to convergence is to always be communicating! We should always be telling Marc if we need help, so that when volunteers come in he can either send them to us right away, or help them find something else to do. The ARN, Neon Tommy and ATVN producers and editors should always be telling each other what they need in terms of volunteer help. That way, we can easily decide where we send volunteers when they come in.

 The idea of convergence is so smart. It’s such a good idea to have journalism students understand not only the broadcasting side that ATVN covers, but also writing and radio with ARN and Neon Tommy. As long as everyone keeps communicating, Annenberg students will keep getting a well-rounded journalistic education!

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