Real talk: Moving beyond CMS hate

Hate your CMS? You’re not alone.

During the Mobile and Breaking News: New Challenges for News Information Visualizations session, Sergio Goldenberg, digital media researcher at Georgia Tech said:

“CMSes are the worst thing that has happened to news.”

Unsurprisingly (or surprisingly, if you’ve never been in a newsroom), this got a round of applause and it was tweeted. And retweeted. And then retweeted some more.

And with all those retweets came a reflection.

We’ve all been there: swearing at the CMSes in which we work and getting frustrated because it just won’t do what we want. And it’s okay. It’d be amazing if we all had CMSes that did exactly what we wanted to do all the time, but that’s just not where most of us are.

That’s where good ol’ elbow grease comes into play. And where playing comes into play.

Learn new things. Explore new tools. Check out the competition. Ask what others are doing to tell similar stories. Ask what you could be doing to tell your stories.

CMSes were developed to serve certain purposes, and news organizations’ needs change at a pace quicker than most of them allow.

Do what you can with your CMS and find ways to work around its constraints. Use the opportunity to branch out, not only on your own, but with others – and find new ways to get your story to users in the best way possible.

– Naudia Jawad, The Commercial Appeal

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