Harnessing Power of Multimedia Communication

10:41:13 AM | 6/19/2019

In Industry 4.0 era, more and more press agencies have adopted the multimedia communication trend. In Vietnam, this trend began relatively late but it is growing increasingly strong.

Multimedia is content that uses a combination of different content forms such as text, audio, images, animations, video and interactive content. For multimedia journalism, information transmission to the public is not only through letters, or still images, but also video, audio, animations, graphics and innovative, modern ways of expression powered by digital technology.

According to data released by Mr. Le Manh Hung, Deputy Chief of Party Central Committee (PCC)’s Commission for Communication and Education, at the National Press Conference held in December 2018, Vietnam currently had 844 printed press agencies with 184 printed newspapers and 660 magazines and 24 independent electronic press agencies.

As many as 189 licenses on establishment of electronic news aggregators have been granted to printing, radio and television press agencies. The country has 67 radio and television stations and 35 providers of paid radio and television services.

For the past time, the country has seen a strong growth in journalism industry with multimedia communications products playing an increasing role.

Intuitive and interactive

Today, in addition to basic communications: Articles, photos and reports, there are many other different ways of expression. Printed newspapers use infographics; visual, audio and electronic newspapers also increasingly use multimedia technologies such as infographic and photo slides.

In the past, in order to read newspapers, listen to and watch a favorite broadcasting program, the audience had to wait until the publication date or the broadcasting time. Nowadays, they can actively get communication products quickly, conveniently and easily thanks to technology (from websites or social networks among others). Vietnamnet (1998), Nhan Dan and Lao Dong (1999) are among the first to develop the multimedia trend in Vietnam, followed by Vnexpress, Dan Tri, Thoi Dai, Saigon Economic Times, Tien Phong, Thanh Nien and Tuoi Tre Online.

Intuitiveness, highly interactivity of the press with readers, briefness and conciseness but inclusiveness of an event match readers’ tastes and these are outstanding advantages of the multimedia trend. Expressed the story or event in infographic is the way chosen by VnExpress, Lao Dong and Zing News. Zing News has an impressive way of presenting images with the creation of a comparing scrolling bar on the same article. Thanh Nien allows smartphones to scan barcodes on paper newspapers, helping readers to access the electronic version immediately and see additional shows such as images or video clips or related articles. Tuoi Tre Online inserts audio into the article. Dan Tri has recently added an audio version.

Multimedia ecosystem

Creating a multimedia ecosystem is also an outstanding feature that press agencies are thoroughly harnessing. Social networking platforms like Google, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram or WhatsApp are considered very important or extremely important for a newsroom. Today, a press agency, in addition to traditional products like print newspapers and print magazines, also has a carefully tended social networking sites, easily interacting with readers anytime in the day. Some editorial offices also support building Facebook pages for key reporters to make them elements of the ecosystem.

In the multimedia press ecosystem, each newsroom does not have only one type but has harmoniously combines different ones. Each journalist no longer works with only one type of expression but he/she can work with different types.

By the end of 2018, Vietnam had 844 printed press agencies with 184 printed newspapers and 660 magazines and 24 independent electronic press agencies.

The 2019 Journalism, Media and Technology Trends Forecast Report by Nic Newman, an expert from Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism conducted surveys on expectations of e-newspaper publishers on social networking platforms. The survey interviewed 200 electronic newspaper leaders around the world. In the question “What do you think these platforms are important to your organization in 2019,” the result showed the choice of “very important” or “important” for Google (87 %), Apple News (43%), Facebook (43%), YouTube (42%), Instagram (31%), Twitter (29%), WhatsApp (16%), Amazon (16%) and Snapchat (8%).

Without doubt, the convergence of communication and multimedia has set an important milestone in the evolution and development of modern journalism and communication in general and in Vietnam in particular.

Nguyen Thanh