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Media Practitioners Advised to Imbibe Data Journalism

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By Hauwa Muhammad Gold
Abuja –   Mr Joshua Olufemi, Programme Manager, Premium Times has advised media practitioners to imbibe the culture of data journalism due to technological advancement in the world.

Olufemi was a resource person at a four-day ongoing workshop of the International Center for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) in Abuja.

He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sidelines of the workshop on Saturday that data journalism was not a replacement of traditional journalism but an improvement to it.

Olufemi said that data journalism was a new skill for searching, understanding and visualising digital sources in a time that basic skills from traditional journalism proved inadequate.

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”In a time where sources go digital, journalists can and have to be closer to those sources. The Internet has opened up possibilities beyond our current understanding.

”Data journalism is just the beginning of evolving our past practices to adapt to online and the internet; from the standpoint of a regional newspaper, data journalism is crucial.

”At the same time, digitisation is everywhere because local newspapers have this direct impact on their environments, sources become digitalised,” he said.

Olufemi explained that a journalist must know how to find, analyse and visualise a story with data.

He said that data journalism serve important purpose for news organisations, especially to find unique stories in order to execute the watchdog function.

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”News stories are flowing in as they happen from multiple sources, eye-witnesses, blogs and what has happened is filtered through a vast network of social connections, being ranked, commented and more often than not, ignored.

“This is why data journalism is so important. Gathering, filtering and visualising what is happening beyond what the eye can see has a growing value,” he said. (NAN)

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