Hanson Hosein on Storytelling: Fresh Ground #13

Hanson Hosein, president of HRH Media Group, is also the Director of the Master of Communication in Digital Media at the University of Washington in Seattle. He specializes in storytelling, social media strategies and new models of communication. Through his company, HRH Media, he employs this expertise to direct award-winning documentary films, including “Rising from Ruins” and “Independent America: The Two-Lane Search for Mom & Pop,” which have been broadcast around the world and prominently featured online. Hanson is a former NBC News war correspondent and investigative producer — and recipient of Overseas Press Club and Emmy Awards.

Fresh Ground Principal — and former classmate of Hanson — Chuck Tanowitz discusses storytelling, journalism vs. “journalistic”, trust, and several other subjects with Hanson.

Some of the more interesting excerpts:

“Even before I took this position at the University of Washington I actually stopped calling myself a journalist…. I just felt like journalism, at least the way we define it in the United States, has become too constricting.”

“I don’t believe in objectivity. I think it’s a canard.”

“I … don’t think [journalism] works anymore even as a business model…. Because of … social technologies … we can actually bring transparency and authenticity to communications. Maybe you don’t need to have that journalism thing as high up in the food chain as we used to.”

“The stories come from the people who actually are living those stories. That’s what’s changed [thanks to digital and social technology]. Everyone is a storyteller.”

“Stop thinking about ‘journalists’ and the journalism industry… and start thinking about being ‘journalistic.’”

“There is huge demand for somebody with the skills and mindset of a journalist outside of journalism.”

“There’s so much noise out there because all of us can communicate. This is the great democratization of communication…. If you want to remain a professional communicator, what matters most is your ability to actually influence people within a community.”

“Anybody who goes to journalism school to be a journalist is wasting his money.”

About the Fresh Ground Podcast: Each week, we feature 10 minutes of insights from people driving change in today’s competitive business and media landscape. We talk about the evolving worlds of media, public relations, marketing and business, with a special focus on creating more social organizations.

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