We asked our writers to be digital journalists for a day. To try factual reportage and make use of the opportunities offered by new media to connect with online audiences.
Poets, novel and short fiction writers, screenwriters and playwrights came together to create an online magazine. We spoke about the new New Journalism that is such a growing phenomenon now, where writers with advanced literary skills write themselves into narratives as they investigate on the ground, looking for their stories in the street and on the road.
We looked at the new platforms they are using, the new magazines that have grown up to challenge the established paper-based and TV media. Articles that use advanced statistical knowledge to break down ingrained prejudice and introduce new perspectives on how we live as a culture. Posts that look at the world from the ground up, allowing people to tell their own stories.
We brought in, Samantha Robinson, a Squad graduate who works in a busy newsroom to provide an editorial eye. We had limited time and no budget. Our writers chose subjects, took from our arsenal of cameras and field mics and headed out into the streets of Manchester on a Saturday afternoon. Some stayed behind to research online. One decided to write utter bollocks – in the manner of popular internet magazines that challenge the banality of normal news presentation.
And we included a film made on a different day in a different city by one of our writers who is also a dancer, because in the world of digital, you can.
We hope you enjoy the contents. Feedback suggests everyone had fun making it.
Danny Broderick and Steve Dearden