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#Tip of the day from Journalism.co.uk – how to create animated GIFs and when to use them

The 10,000 Words blog has addressed use of animated GIFs in Olympics reporting. In the post Kevin Loker states the debate has been rumbling for some time.

The success of GIF-infused content in actual news content has some media circles buzzing around a long time internet graphic capability: “Is this an overlooked tool, or just a fad?”, “Are we Buzzfeedifying maintsream news orgs, or is that a silly question now?”, and “should journalists embrace them, or are they somehow detrimental to the craft?”

Loker concludes that he can “comfortably say there are indeed reasons the animated GIF can work well to tell a story online”.

He proposes five questions to ask yourself when considering using a GIF. They are at this link.

There is also a ‘how to GIF‘ post on Poynter.

Tipster: Sarah Marshall

If you have a tip you would like to submit to us at Journalism.co.uk email us using this link.

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#news2011: Bringing animation into news content: ‘provides fuller picture of events’

November 28th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Events, Journalism

An interesting part of the visual journalism session at the Global Editors Network summit in Hong Kong today looked at where animation can work with news, by hearing about the work of Next Media.

The company, which is based in Taiwan, produces animation clips based on news events. One of their clips, which depicted a story relating to golfer Tiger Woods has so far received seven million views.

Content and business development manager Mike Logan told the conference the animations aim to offer a “fuller picture of events we believe happened at the time”.

That’s how we use animation at Next Media, animating the missing action. Doing news reporting you have an interview but it’s missing a crucial piece of video and that’s action not happening.

He also discussed News Media’s distribution platform News Direct, which offers –free of charge – “more traditional animation to help supplement video”.

This can simply be downloaded by news outlets and added to their own video work. Next Media’s own animations are also embeddable, such as this one Journalism.co.uk posted on its blog in February to illustrate the sale of the Huffington Post.

Find out more on Next Media here.

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Adobe Edge promises animations viewable on Apple devices

Adobe has launched the first HTML5 editing tool: Adobe Edge. The new software allows designers to create animations for news sites using HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript rather than Flash.

Unlike animations built in Flash, Edge moving graphics can be viewed on Apple’s iPhone and iPad.

Edge Preview is now available as a free download for both Mac and PC while Adobe encourages and gathers feedback.

According to a release:

Edge Preview 1 focuses primarily on animation and motion, with upcoming previews featuring additional creative capabilities and functionality.

Adobe states that Edge is designed for evaluation purposes only.

We do not recommended that this release be used on production systems or for any mission-critical work.

Even those without previous experience of creating animations can have a go at importing pictures and graphics, adding text and drawing simple shapes, and then add them to the timeline and try out key framing and transitions.

Users can then add the animation to news stories. Adobe explains how this is done.

Edge stores all of its animation in a separate JavaScript file that cleanly distinguishes the original HTML from Edge’s animation code. Edge makes minimal, non-intrusive changes to the HTML code to reference the JavaScript and CSS files it creates.

An article on ReadWriteWeb explains how Adobe has released Edge to sit alongside Flash rather than immediately replace it.

If you are a designer, let us know how you get on with Adobe Edge by leaving a comment below

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Animation: newspapers vs the Internet

May 20th, 2009 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Newspapers, Online Journalism

Mark Fiore captures the newspaper vs internet debate succinctly in this animated short film featuring a grumpy old newspaper and a squeaky, geeky laptop.

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Launch-time round-up: TotalFilm.com revamps; Politick magazine targets 18-35s; ecoforyou launches

October 22nd, 2008 | No Comments | Posted by in Magazines

A press release courtesy of magazine publisher Future tells of the relaunch of TotalFilm.com – complete with a new editorial team for online.

Andy Lowe, acting digital editor, and George Walter, who has temporarily moved from GamesRadar.com to work as launch editor, will head up the online staff. Contributions to the site will also come from the print magazine team.

The new look site promises ‘hubs’ of content for individual films, in particular new releases, aggregating user comments and related external links. Video on the site has also been ramped up, with more use of clips for Q&As with actors and directors.

In the print sphere: Politick!, a £3.99 quarterly ‘aimed at young people 18-35′ (good news for anyone over 30 – that’s officially young then), is preparing for its debut.

The title, which claims no political bias in a press release, hopes to better engage young people with politics and the political process.

“This isn’t about us telling them we like the Arctic Monkeys. And this isn’t about Cameron, Brown or Clegg. We’re not going to tell anyone who to vote for or what to think. We just want to help young people to realise that they can change the world,” says editor Laura-Jane Foley.

Good luck to Politick! – that’s no mean feat…

Finally – ecoforyou, the green living, digital magazine announced by PlanetInk earlier this month, has launched. The first issue is free from the magazine’s site and boasts video, 34 full-colour pages and Flash animation. A text-only format, which is compatible with screen readers, is also available.

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