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Journalism Writing Study Guide

by: Kyla Brinkley

Journalism Writing Study Guide JOUR 3190

Kyla Brinkley
GPA 3.8

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About this Document

This is a collection of all notes I have taken from our textbook reading (chapters 1-14) in preparation for the exam.
Journalism Writing
Thomas Hudson
Study Guide
journalism, writing, JournalismWriting
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This 60 page Study Guide was uploaded by Kyla Brinkley on Sunday April 17, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to JOUR 3190 at University of Georgia taught by Thomas Hudson in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 19 views. For similar materials see Journalism Writing in Journalism and Mass Communications at University of Georgia.


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Date Created: 04/17/16
Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 1 Notes I. Introduction to Convergent Journalism a. Journalism is shifting as new media expands the way journalists can tell stories and how the public can interact with those stories b. Journalists no longer specialize in a single medium—increasing reach c. 4 trends: i. traditional media like print/broadcast outlets using websites, apps, social media to distribute news ii. news outlets use internet to compete with traditional iii. individuals are becoming part of the media—sometimes becoming more popular iv. public plays more active role in journalism d. convergent journalism: the practice of simultaneously using multiple methods to report & produce news/info so the resulting content can easily be distributed in numerous forms e. technological convergence: application of digital technology to media content, resulting in media messages being stored and manipulated in a similar fashion by computers f. multimedia journalism: practice of gathering news & reporting it across multiple media g. cross ownership: ownership of different media outlets serving the same audience by a single company h. collaboration: 2 or more separately owned media companies working together to share stories or exchange content i. internet = most basic force behind trend toward convergent journalism j. news orgs can post online content that may not fit space or time requirements of primary medium k. internet provides 4 new opportunities: i. expansion of news coverage ii. ability to distribute any type of content iii. interactivity iv. more frequent/faster updating l. convergent journalism focuses on the story, giving the people telling it the capability of communicating it in ways that best fit its nature and the audience’s needs m.converged newsrooms need new functions n. ex: i. newsflow editor ii. story editor iii. multiskilled journalist iv. the increasing importance of content contributed by readers often requires a “user-generated content editor” v. digital rights management vi. online ad sales vii. interactive content design viii. social media coordinator o. Importance of Story i. Reporter’s jobs are more complicated because you must deliver immediate story info but also post on social media and update the website and capture video, etc. ii. Some believe that with the rise of the digital age, new totally new forms of storytelling might be required (rather than supplementing print stories) iii. Must consider innovative ways to tell story if that is what readers want p. The Multiskilled Journalist i. Skills: 1. Interviewing 2. Collecting audio, video, still images 3. Editing images 4. Public speaking 5. Technical knowledge to use networking to post or send materials remotely 6. Producing interactive elements 7. Writing stories for delivery across multiple media ii. Must look at situation & determine what elements are needed for the various ways that media might be used to disseminate the story iii. Journalist must tell story in appropriate format across media 1. Helps if you are the first and only journalist on the scene iv. Time is critical 1. Which medium should be fed first? q. Tools i. All journalists will share a basic set of technical skills— don’t have to master all skills ii. Equipment more compact/cheaper iii. Breaking news can be captured anytime, anywhere iv. Key skills are organizational rather than technical r. Recognizing Stories for Each Medium i. Which stories work best? ii. Breaking stories: social media/broadcast iii. Detailed stories: print iv. Compelling visuals: TV or online video s. 4 steps to gathering information i. identifying/interviewing people ii. research for background info iii. contextualizing the story iv. writing the story t. reporters must learn how to write for different mediums u. Time i. different mediums also allow the story to be delivered at different times ii. must consider lag between when you write and when it ’s delivered iii. what people may be doing when they receive it iv. debate on whether websites should have a schedule or be updating with new info is available v. Story Length i. Broadcast stories measured in time, print stories measured in column inches, online stories measured in screens w. Format i. Print stories told using inverted pyramid ii. Who what when where why how iii. Broadcast stories told in linear format x. Elements i. What can be included in the story y. You will also face ethical challenges in convergent journalism Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 2 Notes I. Journalism Basics: Writing, Reporting, Interviewing a. Journalists in the converged newsroom are expected to have a wider range of skills than those who produce content for 1 medium b. Journalists have a different set of assumptions regarding opinions and spin i. Compared to talk radio, comedy shows, and “spin” from PR c. Journalists must be open minded enough to admit a position is wrong and provide the facts to support an opposing view that may be closer to the truth d. Sometimes the best reporting makes everyone unhappy e. Journalists often blend 2 or more sources (like official reports and eyewitnesses) f. How stories may come to your attention: i. Unexpected/surprising events (breaking news) ii. Scheduled events iii. News releases iv. Ideas/tips from others v. Your ideas g. Journalism is the business of telling true stories about things that are news h. News is something you hear, see, or read about that is important to you i. How to tell if something is newsworthy: i. Proximity or location ii. Significance & impact iii. Conflict iv. Timeliness v. The unusual, unexpected, or unique vi. Prominence or celebrity vii. Need vs want viii. Emotional appeal via the medium (visual/aural emphasis) ix. Voyeurism j. 2 sets of questions to ask when you see news unfolding i. 5 W’s & the H ii. coverage: where you want to take the story k. Writing i. 2 rules: 1. learn the basics of written communication 2. do it over and over ii. grammar: placing words in the correct order so the message the writer seeks to convey is the message received by the reader/user/viewer iii. punctuation: an aide to understanding and is best used sparingly iv. correct word usage: helps you stay credible v. clear organization: guarantees better understanding vi. techniques that are different in online stories 1. subheads 2. highlighted words 3. bulleted lists vii. 5 basic steps to writing a story 1. idea: generate your own or take one from the editor 2. report: gather info 3. organize: decide what to say/how to say it 4. draft: write the first version(s) 5. revise: polish until finished viii. Differences among Print, Online, Broadcast 1. Print reporting formats a. Inverted pyramid b. Hourglass/martini glass c. Circle/dollar sign 2. Radio a. Reader b. Donuts c. Wraparounds 3. TV a. Reader b. Voice-Over c. Voice-Over/Sound on Tape d. Package 4. Online a. Print plus b. Clickable interactive c. Slideshows d. Audio stories e. Narrated slideshows f. Live chats g. Quizzes/surveys h. Animated stories i. Interactive webcasts j. Multimedia interactives k. Other forms i. Weblogs ii. Interactive memorials iii. Games ix. Basics of Good Writing 1. Keep sentences short 2. Prefer the simple to the complex 3. Prefer the familiar word 4. Avoid unnecessary words 5. Put action into your verbs 6. Write the way you talk 7. Use terms your reader can picture 8. Tie in with your reader’s experience 9. Make full use of variety 10.Write to express, not to impress x. The Lead 1. The first, most important sentence in your story 2. Grabs attention 3. Sets tone 4. Entices readers 5. Thinking-then-writing process a. Determine when to stop collecting facts b. Prioritize most important facts c. Rethink/revise 6. Summary leads don’t work well online/broadcast because they’re long 7. Other types of leads a. Delayed identification lead b. Anecdotal lead c. Scene-setter leads d. Direct address lead e. Blind lead f. Wordplay (creative) leads 8. Leads you shouldn’t overuse (if used at all) a. Topic lead b. Question leads c. Quote leads 9. Rewriting a. Rarely go with first version of a lead l. Reporting i. Good writing starts with good reporting ii. Basic sources of info 1. Interviews 2. Documents/archives 3. Personal observations of journalist m. Selecting Sources to Interview i. Newsmakers: firsthand sources: officials, celebrities, survivors, witnesses ii. Factors in considering which sources are best 1. Time to deadline 2. Availability 3. Expertise vs. relevance 4. Topic complexity 5. Degree of controversy n. Deadlines and Stories i. Different stories have different deadlines 1. Ex: most print has single evening deadline but broadcast can have many throughout day ii. Telephone can be used to quickly get quotes or sound bites, but source can easily avoid you by hanging up iii. Computer-Assisted Reporting 1. Can be good for finding info but can limit you 2. Good reporter’s best resource is their personal network 3. It’s critical to verify information from personal interviews or from the internet before putting that info into a story 4. Controversial info usually requires at least 2 independent sources 5. Info new to the reader should reference the source o. Practical Interviewing i. Types 1. Formal interview 2. Foner (phone interview) 3. Walkaround 4. On-the-fly chat 5. Background interviews ii. Approaches 1. A: asking questions as an “expert” 2. B: asking questions as “common folk” 3. C: Past Present Future (PPF) iii. Time & Space Constraints When Interviewing 1. Don’t spend too long interviewing: waste of time sifting through 20 min of recorded material p. Basics of Asking Questions i. Keep questions short, to the point ii. Avoid yes no questions iii. Avoid 2 questions in 1 sentence iv. Avoid leading questions v. Easy first, hard at the end 1. If you can only ask 1, ask the hardest q. Interpersonal Skills i. Make eye contact ii. Nob/briefly smile unless inappropriate iii. Firmly/politely cut someone off if taking long time, deviating, or not answering question iv. Be skeptical but don’t show it unless necessary r. Capturing the Interview i. Always carry recording device 1. Cell phone 2. Camera 3. Digital audio recorder ii. Recording helps get facts straight/verifies what you wrote iii. Let them know they’re being recorded/get consent iv. Know how to operate your equipment, don’t get distracted s. Specialized Types of Interviewing i. News conferences: group interviewing 1. Arrive early, stake out place in front 2. Hold ground 3. Be ready with questions ii. Sports Interviewing 1. Be focused: why/what questions 2. Don’t ask how they feel about something 3. be good listener, ask follow up questions iii. Weather Interviewing 1. Hard to do well 2. Don’t ask how they feel: insensitive 3. Avoid urgent voice of doom approach 4. Don’t get obvious quotes iv. Entertainment Interviewing 1. 2 agendas: a. celeb wants publicity/promotion b. you want something newsworthy 2. often protective PR person in between 3. compromise to get insight into private life & public persona to make great feature story 4. ask fresh questions 5. ask about their art more than them: good icebreaker if you did research Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 3 Notes I. Convergent Journalism Skills and Roles a. In telling a story, you aren’t limited to text b. Convergent Journalism Skills i. If you define yourself as a journalist by just one skill, you are more likely to lose your job ii. Can’t be an expert, but you need to know the basic principles of everything iii. Editing 1. You must decide what info to include and leave out 2. May work with line editor: direct supervisor of group of reporters, or producer 3. Then story goes to copy editor a. Copy editors job has expanded—sometimes they are the only one to see a story b. May post content to website, monitor comments, and write headlines 4. Cutting editors: many reporters now have to edit themselves 5. Issues to be considered a. Legal issues/fairness b. Accuracy, tone, display c. Completeness d. Length/conciseness e. Language issues 6. Grammar is the order in which words go together to create meaning 7. Style sets the tone of a publication and provides consistency both for production and for the reader 8. The only style you have to follow is the one used by the person signing your paycheck iv. Photography 1. Basic skill for every journalist 2. 2 dimensions a. mechanics: basic use of camera b. aesthetics: how the picture is composed/subjects 3. 3 rules for good general photography a. image must be in focus i. depth of field: distance between closest & farthest points at which an image is in focus ii. more light reflected from subject, greater depth of field b. image must be lit i. lighting must create shadows so the 2D image will have the depth of 3D real life ii. light from behind creates a silhouette iii. best lighting is behind and slightly above the camera to illuminate and create depth c. subject must be within the frame i. always frame your subject wider than you expect the final picture to be 4. aesthetic elements a. the set of subjects you choose to portray b. photo editing tools should be used sparingly (introduce ethical issues) c. job is to capture, not create d. angle 5. numerous photos are taken to find the best fit for the story 6. photojournalist must follow same ethical rules a. must accurately depict events in the story v. Videography 1. Same principles as photography 2. But less ability to edit and framing is more important. 3. Having the image in focus is critical 4. getting close to the subject reduces shaking 5. use a tripod whenever possible to keep camera stationary 6. editing involved putting together sequence of moving pictures vi. Graphics Design 1. Graphics can simplify complex quantitative info, illustrate a place or event, diagram relationships among subjects of a news story, or highlight specific story elements 2. Good graphic a. Simple b. Multiple colors but not too many c. Cites sources d. Tells story 3. Know when graphics can be used to enhance a story or simplify complex elements 4. Make sure graphic accurately represents the information available to you vii. Web Design 1. Know your website’s capabilities c. New Roles in a Converged Newsroom i. Storybuilder 1. Combines traditional roles like copy editor/assigning editor and producers 2. Manages multimedia streams on specific topics 3. What aspect of a story is best told in each medium 4. Differentiate content across media ii. Newsflow Manager 1. Directs the stories produced to all output media available in a converged newsroom 2. Directs stories to the most appropriate output media 3. Similar to newspaper managing editor or managing editor or executive producer in TV 4. Like executive producer: which stories to be delivered during which evening newscasts 5. Bad when editors make decisions based on individual work unit interests instead of the broader org 6. Must have detailed knowledge of the different audiences and capabilities of each medium iii. User-Generated Content (UGC) Editor 1. Almost every breaking news story is captured by someone’s cell phone or security camera 2. Only a few newsrooms have an editor devoted to it 3. Some content needs to be verified, selected, or edited 4. Usually left in separate sections of news organization’s website 5. Many of these images are heavily edited and must be verified 6. Comments are another unresolved area a. Have code of conduct written in simple language b. Resist urge to expose violators/ban them the first time c. If problems persist, explain to the community in detail what’s happening d. Don’t execute the ultimate penalty—banning a person—without fully explaining why to online community e. Create new roles if needed such as “online community manager” iv. Digital Rights Manager 1. Helps news staff keep track of what content is in the system, what rights the org has to use the content, & who created the content v. Interactive Content Designer 1. Capability to use Flash, JavaScript, HTML to create interactive content 2. Gather and edit underlying data and other info 3. Will become more prevalent vi. Social Media Coordinator 1. Responsible for sharing info on social network sites 2. Responsible for creating conversations about the news vii. One of the biggest challenges in converged news room is “ownership” of stories by reporters who identify with a specific medium and the clash of organizational cultures among print, broadcast, and online d. Performance i. Journalists should know the basics of how to appear and act in front of a camera ii. Speaking is most important performance tool 1. Don’t try to be someone you’re not 2. Make sure words are clearly understood iii. Make sure nothing distracts viewer from the story you’re telling 1. Dress conservatively e. Teamwork i. The days of the lone wolf journalist are gone ii. Relationship with sources is one-to-one, but creating the final version of the story is a team effort iii. Teamwork is needed because of increasing complexity of technology and the channels by which final product is delivered iv. Overlap of skills v. Draw from experiences of colleagues vi. Communication skills are important Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 4 Notes I. From Print to Internet: Repurposing Content a. Journalists are expected to file online b. Moving stories and information fast is important c. Shovelware: producing content for another medium and automatically moving it online by computer with little human intervention d. Delivery System or Medium? i. The internet is a delivery system and medium ii. Delivery system: internet can provide info in whatever form your readers want iii. Medium: digital storytelling iv. Rapid relevance: information delivered how you want it, when you want it, where you want it at fast speeds v. We are in an environment where routine news itself has become a commodity vi. Good, engaging storytelling will work across media e. Three Key Aspects i. Searchability 1. Internet is vast sea of info 2. Search engine optimization a. Industry designed to push sites onto first page of search engine results b. Manipulation is not needed if journalists adds who what when where why how early in the story c. This provides key words to appear in Google News results d. Care must be taken when writing e. Changes: AP style no longer abbreviates states except in some circumstances to improve searchability 3. Headlines a. Form title tags that search engines use b. Headlines w/o added explanatory text takes on greater importance c. Online headlines don’t use wordplay because reader is already there: need to be descriptive d. Effective online headline i. Conventional subject verb object structure ii. More natural w/ articles, helping verbs iii. Use natural verbs iv. Provide specifics 1. Specifics make headline more understandable and more searchable e. Blog post titles are also headlines ii. Scanability 1. When people use the internet they look for specific information in small, digestible chunks 2. Printcast a. Tight, bright writing with one idea per paragraph i. Less complex than newspaper, more complex than broadcast ii. Modified inverted pyramid—series of short multiple paragraph inverted pyramids each focused on a single idea iii. Use subject verb objects with few adj/adv iv. Add summary paragraph to top of story b. Break items into bulleted lists i. Opens up pages ii. Don’t over do it iii. Keep each item short—not just bullets in front of paragraphs iv. Don’t use too many lists in one article v. Observe the rule of 3 vi. Parallel structure within list c. Consider using subheads & boldfaced words i. Break up text in long stories ii. Help reader pick out ideas iii. Linkability 1. Links are the currency of the online world 2. Linked info creates interwoven web 3. Some think sending someone away from their site with a link is a mistake but it can build credibility 4. If a reader can get to other useful sites from yours they will start at yours and increase exposure to your ads 5. Online value come from utility rather than content 6. Also important for news sites to link their own related stories 7. Linking still needs more attention among journalists 8. Understanding the ethos of the link is critical 9. Effective headlines can result in more links to a story 10. Key points a. Links should be the reporter’s job but the editor’s responsibility b. be specific and link directly c. warn readers if a link takes them anywhere other than a standard Web page d. choose your words carefully f. The Condensed News Cycle i. It is rare for a journalist to have a true exclusive for more than a few minutes ii. Everyone now has access to continual updates iii. News outlets compete with blogs/discussion groups iv. News is broken online first (twitter, fb) v. Speed poses new challenges for accuracy, completeness, fairness, etc. 1. Plagiarism can become issue vi. The Return of the “Shirttail” 1. Shirttail: the bottom of a story that is mostly background and will not change 2. This skill is making a comeback as stories are updated 3. Increased deadline pressure 4. Content being created for online and repurposed back to the legacy medium vii. Making Corrections 1. Faster, constant updating means more errors 2. News papers generally buried their mistakes on page 2 3. Public had little to no access to original story or correction 4. Internet challenges us to address issue of corrections a. Mistakes are more easily found when everyone can be editor/commentator b. Someone might want a quote or photo removed from a story 5. Challenges of online a. How to make it easy to report story errors? b. How to display corrections? c. Should we have a central place to leave errors? d. How to handle “unpublish” requests? viii. Copyright and Creative Commons 1. The web is not public domain and publishing content online doesn’t mean it is “free to take” 2. Linking can solve many of these problems 3. Fair Use a. Journalists do have wider leeway to use others’ material as part of newsgathering if necessary to accurately report a story b. But 4 key things must be balanced i. Purpose and character of the use ii. Nature of the copyrighted work iii. Amount of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole iv. Effect of the use of the copyrighted work c. Material doesn’t need a copyright symbol or to be registered with the Copyright Office to be covered by copyright d. Danger of violation is higher with visual/multimedia material e. Court rulings often hinge on the economic damage done f. When in doubt, leave it out 4. Creative Commons a. Established to help promote the sharing/reuse of works b. CC license can have 2 conditions i. Whether derivatives can be made from the work ii. Whether the work is licensed for commercial or noncommercial use c. Most open license requires attribution d. Most restrictive: attribution, noncommercial, no derivatives –allows it to be shared for noncommercial purposes only and without any changes e. Journalists use items allowed for commercial use g. Blogging i. Publishing system and an ethos: set of ideals ii. Has dramatically reshaped how journalists do their jobs iii. Quicker/easier publishing platform iv. Term “weblog” credited to Jorn Carger v. Shortened form, “blog”, Peter Merholz 1999 vi. Blogger released late 1999 vii. Each post is a separate url, allowing easy linking viii. Presented in reserve chronological order ix. Caught on because it bolsters websites, connects with readers, finds new avenues for advertising x. Young journalists are urged to keep blogs so their work can be updated Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 5 Notes From Print to Internet: New Types of Content I. Traditional Newsgathering Meets the Web a. News orgs are moving toward converged online experiences b. The challenge is to understand all the potential elements of a story and decide how each element is best presented c. What you put online has a longer life and wider exposure d. However, emphasis on breaking news creates a churn that can shorten the audience’s immediate attention span II. 6 Guidelines About Presenting Web Content a. can’t control how readers get your content b. readers need detailed navigation system c. elements need to be able to stand on their own but also be easily discerned in relation to other elements d. stories don’t have to be long—don’t even have to use words e. ability to gather audience feedback and site design are important III. Rethinking “The Story” a. It is hard to maintain coherence in an online world that is designed to be a bit chaotic b. Story doesn’t always have to be a “chunk” of text c. Journalists must continually monitor their online presence and metrics d. Definition of the “story” will change IV. Rethinking “The Newsroom” a. Newsroom with 7 centers i. Digital ii. Local iii. Data iv. Multimedia v. Custom content vi. Public service vii. Community conversation b. In 2007 the AJC split production from gathering of news to focusing on each newsgathering area on the medium to which it was best suited c. Ex: The Journal Register Co. fought its way back from bankruptcy by adopting a “digital-first, print-last” ethos and experimentation V. How New Newsrooms Approach the New Story a. Ask what is the best way to tell the story b. Ask what can be done given available resources (equipment, software, time, personnel, skill levels) c. Video on the web is best in tightly focused, short chunks d. Bring depth to the story with interactive media e. Documents i. Its important to ask for documents in a hard copy and digital form ii. Posting and linking to documents and other materials is easy with online services iii. But you have to ask for and even fight for the material iv. Scan and post documents to add depth to stories v. Gives viewers another reason to stay on your website VI. Helping the User a. Value comes from utility, not just content b. Help users navigate and make connections throughout the story c. Challenge is to provide enough context with each element and provide a navigational structure that allows users to find related elements and share them with others d. Website design has turned to simplification e. Shells i. A web shell is a page or group of pages that centralizes all the online content on a particular topic ii. Should provide context and continuity of content iii. Beat shell 1. Story shell a. Issue shell iv. Can integrate stories, graphics, data, resources f. Tags i. Used to categorize stories/story elements so you can find all elements with similar tags ii. Can lead you to stories you wouldn’t otherwise see iii. Tag cloud: listing of tags that shows the most requested types of stories on your site iv. Tags allow user to create a structure of his of her own by browsing like-tagged items on your site v. Keywords, however, are used to help search-engine optimization and generally go into the HTML header coding of a page vi. The use of tags has been waning as they concentrate more on allowing users to share copy on social media sites vii. More likely to find them on blogs viii. Should be used more ix. Taxonomy: the hierarchy of tags assigned by the journalist or organization x. Folksonomy: more opportunity for helping people find things on your site by letting them create tags 1. Keeps ppl looking at more of your content/ads xi. Some sites use search links instead of tags g. RSS Feeds i. RSS Feeds: rich site summary, aka really simple syndication 1. Specially coded web page designed to be parsed by specific software that produces a list of new items that lets you see all or part of each one without having to go to the original site ii. Way to more widely distribute content iii. Easy to monitor changes on web sites iv. Some feed readers offer ability to share content v. RSS could be dying because of social media but is still useful because it ties the internet together vi. Ethics: allows people to consume content for free and without knowing the originating site VII. Involving the User a. News is now a conversation b. News editor is a guide c. Involve readers/users/viewers d. Journalism has become a process e. Nonjournalists also perform act of newsgathering f. Journalists have to pay attention to all of their environment VIII. Interactivity, An Evolving Frontier a. At the beginning of the internet, interactive elements were not integrated into a story and users had to make an effort to access them b. Audio vs. photo slideshow c. You have to think interactively IX. Internet allows journalists to play active role in community X. Think about multimedia from the beginning because adding it on after a story is written is too late Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 6 Notes From Broadcast to Internet: Repurposing Content I. Introduction a. Broadcast news is no longer limited to airwaves b. Stay competitive with prominent Web presence c. Printcast (print and broadcast content) is as important as broadcast d. Audiences expect news on demand e. Rather than create all new online stories, stations have found it effective to repurpose the stories they air f. Repurposing: taking what has been produced for one medium and tailoring it for another i. Tailoring differentiates it from “shovelware” ii. Decide what makes the most compelling version for each medum II. Why Repurpose? a. Online combines strength of print and electronic media b. Text lets readers quickly scan or thoughtfully digest passages c. Audio and video have a home on the web d. Internet has changed expectations e. Websites can now provide video of the most compelling moments from an event f. Repurposing allows broadcast station to expand reach and shelf life of its journalism g. Website extends news station’s brand i. Little extra cost III. Radio VS Television a. News websites increasingly look the same whether the news org is TV, radio, or newspaper b. Website content reflects differences in staff size and organization goals c. Radio is considered “sound only” medium but can offer other services/info d. Most popular format: News and Talk radio e. Online delivery improves (usually low-quality AM) f. Not as much opportunity for employment/content creation g. NPR h. Radio tries to maintain employment numbers but serve more stations IV. The Basics of Television News Websites a. Smaller staff than newspaper but competitive with newspaper b. Created/maintained in-house or by contract c. Rely on posting content and replenishing as often as possible d. Web is key for delivering news content e. The Look of News Websites i. Design is important ii. Can’t be too cluttered iii. Most look similar 1. Small number of people design them 2. Nature of news is standardized 3. Competitive environment f. Similar Content i. Website content/design elements (like logo) should match on-air product ii. Cross promotion iii. Enhance branding of org g. Uploading Scripts i. Reporters/producers refashion scripts to print style and post to website V. Broadcast Stories Online a. Stories online can be the same as those broadcast b. Length not constrained but keep it short c. Must remove self-references/descriptions used in broadcast like “here at channel 2…” d. Use of quotes will be more similar to newspaper e. Story Presentation i. Interactivity is key ii. People want to do something with the information provided iii. Keep them interested 1. Related links 2. Images 3. Graphics 4. Animations 5. Polls/opinions iv. Short video segments v. Social media vi. Physical layout 1. Top stories on main page 2. Teases and summary leads to pique interest in top stories 3. Photos f. Web Shells i. Web shell: dedicated space on a site to hold reports, multimedia elements, and related info on a specific topic ii. small staffs make it harder to “drill into” topics iii. members of the community can help small staffs iv. software makes uploading easier VI. Handling Multimedia Content a. Audio video photos graphics animations b. Faster and easier c. Audio Only (Podcasts, MP3) i. Editing/processing audio is easier than video 1. Less info ii. Adds value to news org brand iii. Extended interview iv. Narration v. Full programs with music, multiple voices vi. Reporter should have small digital recorder, video camera, microphone vii. Use the audio recorder when shooting video as well viii. Strength of audio is portability, listener can multitask on the website while listening d. Video i. More demanding, complex, more valuable ii. Longer to process, edit, manage iii. Most news orgs are switching to cameras with removable storage like memory cards instead of recording to digital tape 1. Takes a long time to transfer tape to computer iv. Editing while using the camera helps v. Web has no video standard VII. Web Site Management a. When to Update i. News orgs are being pushed to provide latest news/info 24/7 ii. Problems with allocating resources iii. Allocate staff and resources as common sense and time allow iv. Station should provide guidelines for how web content should be updated v. On-air deadlines have no flexibility so broadcast stories have more priority vi. Breaking news usually immediately posted to website 1. Update as new info arrives 2. hard to make judgment about other stories b. Special Sections i. Weather 1. “weathercaster” team of certified meteorologists trained in professional on-air performance 2. many stations present short weather updates throughout the day that can be recorded and uploaded to website 3. priority when weather gets bad 4. update quickly and often ii. Sports 1. TV stations compete to be the primary provider for news and info about local sports team (college, hs, pro) 2. Includes promotions, ticket giveaways, live broadcast of games, exclusive player interviews, etc 3. Build hype in community 4. Many stations have separate websites for these categories 5. Conflicting roles a. Active boosters of home team b. But when news is unpleasant, must be fair and balanced 6. Coverage of local teams usually limited because of time constraints on TV but have way more time on web available 7. Getting people involved through website generates traffic 8. Remember basics a. Report scores b. Analyze games c. Tell audience who next opponent is c. Multiple Versions of the Same Story i. People tune out if they hear or see something they experienced earlier ii. Because web provides a new degree of flexibility for storytelling, raises some of the most basic and important questions of the craft iii. Constrained by time on TV 1. All video must be presented in sequence 2. Web provides flexibility a. Reporters can determine what is most obvious/important iv. Best way to tell a story may not be the usual way v. TV is more likely to become a digital appliance that blends it with functions of computers vi. Some news orgs use a creative commons license that allows freer sharing of the material Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 7 Notes From Broadcast to Internet: New Types of Content I. Opportunities for New Content a. Stay up to date on new content by reading blogs and industry newsletters b. Television i. Journalism fundamentals work well: show/tell what’s happening ii. Staples of still images, text, video iii. Online livecams of traffic and weather on website c. Radio i. Traditionally relied on sound only content ii. Use audio content on websites iii. Use podcasts iv. can become more like television online v. areas where we will expect new content to emerge 1. news events 2. reporter/individual’s opinion about an issue 3. promoting the organization’s brand 4. public involvement in the newsgathering process (user- generated content II. The News Events a. Forces us to consider how we attend, gather, record news events as they happen for electronic media b. Depends on whether event is scheduled or unplanned c. How we discover breaking news i. News releases from a gov or org ii. Police calls on a scanner iii. Tip from a source iv. Notification from ordinary witness d. Ask i. How did you hear about it 1. Were you the first or last to know ii. How fast is the story moving 1. How will you break the story iii. Who and what are your sources 1. Get the audio and video you need iv. What are your resources 1. Primary rather than secondary 2. Get a picture e. Journalism is a conversation f. Creating new content means collecting, sifting through the old, coming up with ways to keep dialogue moving forward g. Mobile Posting: Moblogs i. Mobile web logs ii. Instant event coverage, combining text & images iii. Steps 1. Take photo 2. Post image 3. Write caption 4. Fill in proper hyperlinks iv. However you can miss the meaning because you’re so busy chronicling the moment that the captured content can be trivial and uninteresting v. Used to report something that happens in real time, can be captured as it happens, and where video is not practical or allowed vi. Must be skilled at using camera phone and texting short captions vii. More than one person should cover from different angles/locations viii. Easy for material to get backed up h. Extended Audio or Video Interviews i. Consider 1. Audio only vs. video and audio 2. Unedited, edited, or partially edited 3. News value (timeliness, prominence of interviewee, conflict, etc.) 4. Time and resources needed to package and post the information ii. Video files larger than audio and more complicated to package and post online iii. People prefer to see and hear newsmakers i. Quality vs. Content vs. “Local” i. Digital cameras and camera phones have caused an explosion in what broadcasters consider to be acceptable for air ii. Networked world: we have to change our definition of “local” III. Opinion, Analysis about an Issue or Topic a. News content reflecting staff opinion or analysis is being experimented with online b. Talk radio, cable news network programs has blurred lines between news analysis and punditry c. Enhance personal brand as converged journalist and media personality d. Be reasonable, know your limits e. Blogs i. More common in TV 1. Staff blogs ii. Facebook pages too iii. Enhances writing skills iv. Regular posting v. Linking to outside sources vi. Ideas that encourage others to link & refer to you f. Podcasts i. Audio oriented ii. Radio iii. Audio feeds distributed through the web via RSS and made popular by the iPod iv. Basic Podcast 1. Short, to the point 2. Factor in recording location 3. Make point, support with evidence 4. Practice out loud to avoid awkward spoken words 5. Keep it pretty short or add other production values to make it more interesting for people to listen for longer v. Weekly Public Affairs Podcast 1. More serious commitment 2. Have something to say 3. Decide how long it should be 4. Record your interviews as needed 5. Gather your other production elements 6. Assemble using editing software 7. Plan regular schedule vi. Keep it interesting and at a length appropriate for the topic vii. You’re limited only by your creativity and your time IV. Content Promoting the Worker or the Organization a. News orgs must promote themselves as well as their people b. But consider when and how to promote news org c. Competitive and uncertain marketplace d. Promotions i. Promote content ii. (news related content and the staff need to be promoted) iii. TV has embraced self promotion iv. All newsrooms have to maximize the strength they have v. Best resource in any newsroom is the people who work there 1. Marketable brands 2. Promote the personalities vi. Be sincere and honest vii. Essence of good PR is accurately identifying the unique thing you’re offering and providing it e. Branding and the Journalist i. Stations have organizational branding ii. Other branding labels 1. “special reports” 2. “live and late-breaking” 3. “family-friendly” 4. “news you can use” iii. on air talent is a promotable commodity iv. another way to make yourself promotable is to be recognized in your particular area 1. most common means is certification or community service a. ex: it is now common for weather journalists to have studied and gained certification in meteorology v. organize special events where you are a moderator or discussant to be more promotable 1. add to the community conversation vi. local celebrity vii. seek new and creative ways to capture audience attention V. Involving the Public and User-Generated Content a. New content comes from the vast array of group, network, and syndicated material of which all stations are a part b. No news org operates in isolation c. If the local community thinks you have what it wants, people will come to you when the need arises d. User-generated content coordinator helps keep the discussion online from getting out of hand e. Digital rights manager makes sure content ownership issues are kept clear f. More people now have basic skills in digital photography and video Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 8 Notes Basics of Broadcasting I. Introduction a. Today since news and information washes over us 24/7, we don’t have time to worry about whether its more interesting in print or broadcast b. News organizations try to gather, verify, and present information in a way that enables the consumer to make decisions on how to live c. “sense-making journalism”–basics for any type of good journalism are the same II. What’s the Same a. Basics of good journalism: accuracy, attention to detail, compelling information, solid attribution, great writing b. Accuracy i. No substitute for accuracy ii. Perception of being biased or misinformed can be just as damaging as not getting basic facts correct iii. In age of “spin” this can be one word c. Attention to Detail i. Strong writing uses details for their full effect ii. Can be important to text-based stories to help people see or experience it d. Compelling Information i. Careful presentation of info creates meaning for viewers and helps move them toward some universal human truth ii. Difference between regurgitating facts and painting vivid picture iii. The “why” that journalists strive to answer e. Appropriate and Solid Attribution i. Internet has increased need for solid attribution ii. Differentiates amateur blogger from professional journalist iii. Credibility has to be earned, and attribution helps transparency iv. Important in gaining trust f. Great Writing i. Short, compelling sentences with proper word order are the cornerstone of good journalism ii. This essential to reporting/writing hasn’t changed whether you work for newspaper, radio, TV, or online news site III. What’s Different a. Stress the Visual i. Television is visual: pictures dominate ii. Viewers expect exciting and interesting images iii. Best stories weave sight and sound into a unified whole iv. Reporter is a guide for this medium b. Stress the Moment i. Strength of broadcast news is timeliness ii. “live and late-breaking” iii. the news just happened iv. brings latest updates for viewers v. element of the unexpected c. Stress the Simple i. Broadcast’s linearity is a constraint on storytelling ii. Viewer can only process info in the way it is presented iii. Most narrative storytelling is chronological-better iv. Forces us to tell story as simply as possible and pay attention to structure IV. How These Principles Affect Practices a. Smaller Staffs i. TV stations have fallen in status and influence ii. News depts. have trimmed staff positions while increasing expectations iii. Stations operate with just enough people on staff to meet the normal demands of events in the area iv. Fewer beats, more general assignments v. Radio Staffing 1. Much smaller than TV or cable news operations 2. Less work space needed 3. Positions a. News director b. Anchor c. Reporter vi. TV Staffing 1. Larger, more task specific 2. Rely more on teamwork 3. Positions a. News director b. Producer c. Assignment editor (assignment manager) d. Anchor (talent) e. Reporter f. Photographer g. Video editor h. Graphic artist i. Studio production staff j. Field producer/editor b. Reliance on Visuals i. Because of TV’s reliance on images and sound, reporters and editors have to present info in a clear linear fashion that won’t confuse the viewer ii. Basic Visual Principles 1. Framing is most basic and essential: idea you want to focus on should dominate the screen 2. Use tripod whenever possible 3. 4 basic shots a. WS/LS (wide, long shot) i. Better for TV b. MS (medium shot) c. CU (close up) d. ECU (extreme close up) i. Better for online because of smaller screen 4. Try to have action or movement in every shot 5. Avoid shooting people from behind as they walk away and anything unflattering 6. Record each shot for 5 -10 seconds iii. Editing Basics 1. Shot you use to introduce your package is ES (establishing shot) a. Establishes for viewer where story is taking place b. Usually a wide shot or medium shot 2. Think in terms of sequence, not series 3. Never edit together motion to motion shots 4. Maintain line of action (180-degree rule) 5. Avoid jump cuts that come when scenes that are too similar are edited together 6. Whenever there’s a jump cut the blame goes to editor 7. The time to start thinking of editing is when you’re in the field shooting the video 8. Some stories are better told with video, some aren’t iv. Writing Visually 1. Writing to visuals is learned 2. Think ahead about images and pictures that can be presented with the story 3. Use charts/animated graphics etc. 4. Provide reactions with sound bites c. Notion and Use of Time i. In broadcast news all processes/content production issues revolve around time ii. TV is time sensitive iii. Timeliness is a key consideration for determining what makes good TV news iv. Difference between broadcast and print is narrowing on this point v. The Live Newscast 1. Anchors appear in real time to present the news 2. Brings viewers latest news & information 3. Downside: local news stations featuring lonely reported describing things that happened hours earlier, potential loss of control 4. No second takes vi. Writing Stories to Time 1. Stories must adhere to constraints related to time 2. Forms of TV news stories a. Reader b. Voice over c. VO/SOT d. Package i. Reporter’s recorded story ii. Part of news program branding is to emphasize the personalities presenting the information e. Telling stories with pictures—the video essay vii. Newscast comes together in the rundown: document that integrates all the stories in various forms plus graphics, commercials, teases, tosses, and music stings viii. Producer weaves everything into coherent whole d. Personality: The Reporter Is Talent i. Age of celebrity ii. Reporters participate in events iii. Personal brand 1. Start with good script 2. Speak with monotone then vary to add emphasis a. Inflection of pitch of voice b. Amplitude or volume of speech c. Pauses/silence 3. Format of the script a. Written to time b. Easy to read c. Broadcast ready iv. Overall presentation 1. Authoritative 2. Friendly 3. Folksy 4. Energetic 5. Sincere e. Broadcast Writing Style i. Broadcast writing is more conversational ii. Good usage and grammar are critical in broadcast because listener/viewer doesn’t have a second chance to figure out what you’re saying iii. Key points 1. Listeners can’t go back and relisten a. Put titles before names b. Avoid abbreviations 2. Numbers almost always written out from 1-11 a. 12-999 numerals used b. greater than 999 written out: 25 hundred, 64 thousand c. avoid “three point seven million”, say “close to four million d. street addresses hyphenated 3. avoid quoting someone in text 4. use of present tense verbs common Kyla Brinkley JOUR 3190 Spring 2015 Chapter 9 Notes Basics of Print I. Introduction a. Goal of good storytelling: to create a picture in the viewer’s or reader’s


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