Teaching Examples

Online tips for covering a flood (or other disaster)
May 28, 2006, 11:59 pm
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Steve Safran of Lost Remote wrote a really excellent list of six straight-to-the-point lessons for online journalists to learn before their city gets flooded — based on his experience in Boston last week. For example:

Of course, the amount of video crashed our email. LESSON THREE: Prepare your IT staff for this and have a plan in place to accommodate the influx of video and digital picture emails. This stuff is measured in megabytes, not kilobytes. It can be done – it does, however, require planning.

Steve makes some very good points about soliciting and using content from users and viewers too.

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Judge rules: California shield law protects bloggers
May 28, 2006, 11:40 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This has been much covered already (see the Daily Koz, for example), but for the record, here is the News.com report from May 26.

The appeals court pointedly took issue with Apple’s argument that the Web sites were not legitimate journalistic enterprises. Apple had claimed that the sites were engaged not in “legitimate journalism or news” but instead in “trade secret misappropriation” and copyright violations.

Judge Conrad Rushing of the California Court of Appeal, Sixth Appellate District, who wrote the opinion, said: “We decline the implicit invitation to embroil ourselves in questions of what constitutes ‘legitimate journalism.'” To do otherwise, Rushing warned, would imperil the very values the First Amendment was intended to protect.

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James Carey dies
May 28, 2006, 10:42 pm
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From the New York Times obit for this most readable communication theorist:

Dr. Carey shunned the increasingly abstruse, highly mathematical theoretical work at the frontiers of his field, preferring instead to focus on underlying values. He drew from anthropology and sociology, James Joyce and Boston Red Sox lore, to explore the cultural dimensions of journalism in democracies. This took him from the quirks of futures markets to journalism in 18th-century France to Marshall McLuhan, the media theorist. His own most influential idea was the “ritual theory” of communications, a departure from the traditional “transmission theory,” which defines communication as getting ideas from one place to another. Dr. Carey argued that a newspaper is not a transmission of facts or truth. Rather, it is a form of drama. (May 26, 2006)

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Multimedia from Florida student journalists
May 27, 2006, 7:50 pm
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Our students are fabulous. Check out the profiles of eight local bands photographed and interviewed on location in Orlando by Alligator staffers (pop-up window opens from the link at right, “Gainesville heard at FMF”). For something completely different, see what an intern from UF created for the St. Pete Times with hard news on deadline with the help of Google Maps: Rapist on the Run.

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Bespoke journalism online
May 27, 2006, 7:16 pm
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Bespoke tailoring is reserved for the wealthy — or those who travel to Hong Kong — but bespoke journalism may be the wave of the future. To see what I mean, check out Circle of Blue.

Circle of Blue is a pragmatic, creative, journalism-based project dedicated to addressing the global freshwater crisis … [and] a non-profit affiliate of the Pacific Institute in Oakland, California.

The first location of focus is the Tehuacán Valley in Mexico. I’m bummed that the excellent photo gallery has no captions, but the infographic is really nice (too tall for my screen, however! I had to scroll too often).

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Dynamic Flash app tracks market activity
May 27, 2006, 6:50 pm
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John Caserta sent this link to a site he designed (as part of a team) for The New York Times. It’s a really nice example of how to visually represent data with a back-end application that updates the numbers as needed. Companies within a selected market sector are represented by dots. The bigger the dot, the larger the market cap. The visualization is divided into quadrants that represent month/year and behind/ahead of the S&P 500. Check out the Help screen (linked at top right) if you’re not a finance wizard — or even if you are. It’s a first-rate example of clear and useful help for how to use and understand the chart.

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Holovaty tells the kids what’s up
May 23, 2006, 12:16 am
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Adrian Holovaty said what every young journalist needs to hear, in a commencement speech at the Missouri School of Journalism earlier this month.

… the foundation is important because you need to understand the rules before you can break them. And now, more than ever, this industry needs to break some rules….

Rarely is an entire industry in a position such that it needs to completely reinvent itself.

That’s what keeps me going, personally: The challenge of coming up with the best ways of presenting news and information in this new world where the products the industry has been producing for the past several decades are no longer in as much demand. The challenge of writing the rules, coming up with best practices. That challenge is monumental — but, man, it’s fun.

Found by way of Steve Yelvington.

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