In the olden days | TheFencePost.com

Back to: Opinion

In the olden days

Remember the days before we had cell phones and the internet?

As a reporter, these technological advances made my job much easier.

In the old days, if we needed to look back at a story that ran months ago, we had to go through drawers and drawers of articles. If you had the reporters name and the date it was published it was fairly easy. But if you didn't have that information, it could take several hours to find something that now takes minutes, and in some cases, seconds to find on the internet.

And, if I need to find information about a person or a business, I can easily look it up on the internet, instead of calling around to people or organizations that may or may not be able to help me out.

And the cell phone, wow it sure beats searching for a telephone booth and praying you had the correct amount of change on you to make a call. Or stopping at a house in the middle of nowhere and asking strangers if you can use their phone.

Of course, there are some drawbacks to new technology.

Recommended Stories For You

For example, if I have to stay home because of a blizzard today, I would still be expected to work because I have a cell phone and internet service. Everything I can get done in the office, I can now do at home. So, no more snow days for me.

I no longer can ignore people's calls because they are logged into my cell phone. Not only are they on my cell phone but it also records the date and the time of the call.

And people can screen their calls. In most cases, I'm sure that the pesky reporter from the local newspaper is on the do not answer list.

Nowadays, most sources prefer to email us rather than call us if we have questions. This may seem like a simpler, faster way to communicate, but it doesn't allow us to ask follow up questions. It also doesn't give us any insight into our sources personality and that can make our stories sound more stilted than they would if we actually had a conversation with a source.

But, like it or not, I don't think we are going back to the past. ❖