Ask A Pro
Examples of Work
The Wire, The Associated Press's news Web site
william chang William (Will) J. Chang
The Wire, the news Web site of The Associated Press
What inspired you to become
I sort of fell into it. In my high school, we didn't have a regular school paper, so I started as a photographer for the yearbook. When I got into college, I joined the yearbook staff again. I took my first journalism class my sophomore year. I loved the work, but hated the teacher. The next year, I became the staff photographer and one of the newspaper's editors.
What does your current
I am an online editor for The Wire, The Associated Press' real-time news Web site. There are about a dozen editors that help maintain the site, deciding on stories, photos, graphics and audio.
How did you get to your
current job and how do you keep up with fast-changing technology?
I used to work at Newsday. When the business people at the newspaper's parent company, Times Mirror, decided to close down New York Newsday, the writing was on the wall. I left several months after and got the job at AP when The Wire was just starting up. I keep up with developments by reading a lot, both online and off.
What's the most fun
part of the job, and the most challenging?
I love being there when a big story happens, and I am assigned as the primary editor. Everybody pitches in to make sure that we put together a comprehensive presentation of text, photos, graphics and audio clips. We are constantly racing the clock, trying to pull everything together quickly and accurately.
When you got started
in journalism, did you think it would include an online component?
Not really. When I was in college, going online meant grabbing archived files and maybe chatting over Internet Relay (IRC). My roommate was into it more than I was, but now, our positions are reversed.
What is The Associated
Founded in 1848, The Associated Press is the oldest and largest news organization in the world, serving as a source of news, photos, graphics, audio and video for more than one billion people a day. The AP is the backbone of the world's information system. In the United States alone, AP serves 5,000 radio and television stations and 1,700 newspapers. Add to that the 8,500 newspaper, radio and television subscribers in 121 countries overseas, and you'll have some idea of AP's reach.
AP's mission is to provide factual coverage to all parts of the globe for use by the media around the world. News bearing the AP logotype can be counted on to be accurate, balanced and informed. With 3,700 employees working in 242 bureaus around the world, AP operates as a not-for-profit cooperative with its subscribing member organizations.
Around the clock, AP supplies a steady stream of news (20 million words a day) to its domestic members and foreign subscribers. It also has the industry's most sophisticated digital photo network, a 24-hour continuously updated online news service, a state-of-the-art television news service and one of the largest radio networks in the country.
The Associated Press has received 47 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other news organization in the categories for which it can compete. It has 28 photo Pulitzers, the most of any news organization.
What do you think the
newspaper Web sites will look like in five years? What will you be able to do
that you can't now, technology-wise?
I hate to predict too much, because the possibilities are endless. With my luck, I might be totally wrong and in five years, it would come back and haunt me.
Do you think there will
always be print newspapers or will people prefer to get news online?
Newspapers aren't going to go away until technology makes online reading much more convenient. Reading on handheld computing devices is OK, but most people would rather read on paper.
Are you a news junkie
when you're not working?
I am technology news junkie. I'm always reading computer-oriented publications. Rapidly advancing technology means that you always have to keep up with that kind of news.