Transforming The News: Entering A Digital Culture

Transforming The News: Entering A Digital Culture June 17, 2015 Some may argue that if things are not broke then they do not need to be fixed. But, let us consider the analogy of an old car: Parts may start to go bad so do you wait to make the fixes until it stops working or do you slowly make repairs one at a time? Change can be a good thing. Newsrooms are no different–some individuals are fully embracive of using digital while others do not feel it is necessary. As we had discussed in class this week, some news organizations are even providing training to employees to bring them up to speed on what is turning into being new standards in journalism with the rise of social media. For example, the New York Times keeps an open line of communication with their journalists so they are able to ask for help. This allows journalists to receive training on different digital platforms while also being shown the best practices for incorporating them into their stories. The Financial Times also believes in shaping training to the needs of their journalists and even go a step further with providing introductory HTML classes. Our assignment this week is to consider how the following roles should be using social media and the benefits to utilizing the digital tools. Foreign News Correspondent: Last week I was introduced to Alex Thomson and how he used Twitter to reunite a family after a natural disaster. Thomson also uses platforms like Vine to showcase short videos about the stories he is working on. One particular story featured...

Enhancing Journalism Through Social Media

Enhancing Journalism Through Social Media June 11, 2015 The role of a journalist has undergone a transformation from what it was considered twenty years ago. No longer do television anchors only report the news on their respective live broadcasts, but each type of journalist has the added responsibility of making information available instantly. We also do not have to get up on cold mornings to run outside to get the newspaper to find out what is going on in the world when we have all of that information published and shared in almost real-time for us on the internet. One particular area that I wanted to focus on is sports. In the past, if you wanted to see a game but had prior commitments, you would more than likely have to catch up with your friends in school the next morning and get all of the highlights. Now, getting game scores and video highlights comes in the form of several different sports applications for smartphones. You have a men’s softball tourney and can’t watch the game? That’s cool. MLB At Bat (or insert your favorite sports app here) has you covered. Or, you can check out your favorite social network and see posts from the sports teams themselves showing the box scores from the evening–sometimes even with video highlights. I’m going to use my favorite team as an example. This season more than any other that I can recall has seen the Tampa Bay Rays plagued with injuries–mostly to the starting pitching staff. This past week Jake Odorizzi came out of a game in the fifth inning against the...

Being the story that stands out

Being the story that stands out May 13, 2015 When you scroll through your social media feeds, what captures your attention? For me, and many people, seeing a strong image grabs us and sucks us in. We are beginning Social Media and News, one of my summer classes, with the art of storytelling and engagement. So, not only is the overall story important, but having a powerful visual can effectively draw people in. This week I found myself rapidly scrolling through my Twitter feed on my phone trying to catch up on anything I missed while I was working and I came across a tweet from ESPN that had a video and a headline mentioning Instagram. As a social media scholar, posts that tend to mention other social platforms catch my attention because I want and need to be in-the-know. However, when I took the time to actually read the headline and look at the video still, I became curious as to what this seemingly happy and beautiful young woman was hiding. By clicking the link, you are taken to the ESPN website to view the video story. The opening is very somber with music playing, photographs of the young woman named Madison moving across the screen and a male voice stating, “She was losing the balance there.” Less than thirty seconds into the video, you find out that Madison has passed away. We are hooked. We have a face to this story, and something terrible has happened to her. Following the storytelling arch, naturally after the powerful introduction and finding out what the problem is comes the background...

Social Media Moderation

Social Media Moderation February 11, 2015 This week in class we are discussing moderation. Where does that imaginary line fall between what we should allow to stay and what we should delete? We may have some guidelines set forth by the different brands that we work for, but in the end it comes down to using good judgement and our own personal discretion. When in doubt, refer to the higher ups. The below comments are simulated and my duty is to respond to them appropriately. 1. To a hotel: “I am disgusted about the state of your restaurant on 1467 Justin Kings Way. Empty tables weren’t cleared and full of remains of meals. It makes me wonder what the state of your kitchen is?!!! Gross.” My Reply: We are so sorry to hear about your experience, USERNAME. We at The Hotel make every effort possible to make sure you have an exceptional experience while you are on our property, and that includes your dining experience at our restaurant. We have high expectations for our kitchen and waitstaff and recognize that it is unacceptable to anticipate anything less. We will look in to this regrettable situation and hope that you accept our apology. Thank you for letting us know about this matter and we hope that you will join us again at our 1467 Justin Kings Way property. If you would like to discuss this matter further, please contact me at (telephone) number. Megan Washington My reason: I believe that by acknowledging this person who has had an unfavorable experience at the hotel by their name, we are applying a...

Music Press: How to pitch an artist

Music Press: How to pitch an artist September 3, 2014 I thought I would outline a helpful strategy for artists who do their own PR, or for those who are interested in the field. I founded Stardust-Ent.com back when I was twelve, so I’ve been part of the music media for more than half my life. I also have experience on the other side of it with having worked for a major label. This is a field that uses a blending of experiences and education. There are people out there who may use their friend as a “publicist” but please reconsider that unless you are sure they know what they are doing. Actually, I received a press kit one time where the artist’s publicist was also their manager and tour manager. The biography mentioned how as tour manager, she jumped in the van and hit the road with the band. I don’t care what she is doing, I care about the artist. Make sure you work with someone who knows the difference. Your publicist needs to not only make sure you have an artist bio that allows you to stand out, but they are also responsible for pitching you to media sources. There are some things that really irk me that a so called “publicist” tends to do so in an effort to maximize your exposure or the exposure of your clients, here is the rundown. 1. Include a press photo. Doesn’t this seem obvious? You would think. More than half of the press releases that are currently sitting in my inbox do not include a photo and chances...