Matt Sheehan is ‘Leading a Movement’ at UF’s Innovation News Center That May Help Shape Journalism’s Future

As director of the Innovation News Center (INC) at the University of Florida’s College of Journalism and Communication, Matt Sheehan oversees a massive, cutting-edge, multi-platform news media hub.

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Matt Sheehan is director of the Innovation News Center (INC) at the University of Florida and a member of the faculty within UF’s College of Journalism & Communications.

Operations within the two-story, 14,000-square-foot facility are professionally managed but staffed and powered mainly by students, producing a bevy of regularly-scheduled programming and real-time breaking news coverage.

The INC (each letter pronounced individually I-N-C) is also undertaking a massive shift in the near future, in part to remain relevant amid what Sheehan calls an incoming “storm of disruption” in regards to media consumption habits. As he asks, “Why mess with a good thing? We need to adapt before the market —  and the audience — gets ahead of us. … When talking about the future of news, we tend to emphasize print. It’s clear that the glory days are over. The digital disruption has overtaken that industry. What we don’t always recognize is the coming tide that is about to breach the worlds of broadcast news and entertainment.”

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In a recent buzzworthy Medium post, Sheehan explains “why we’re examining many of the things we’ve spent the last 18 months building in our newsroom.”

For this edition of the College Media Podcast, Sheehan speaks with me about the ethos of the INC (including its ROPE model, “report once, publish everywhere”), the changes in store for both the Center and the larger news landscape and what those changes mean for journalism students and educators.

Click here or anywhere on the image below to listen in on our chat.


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