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#Podcast – What journalists should know about App.net

App.net is a Twitter-like microblogging service and open platform which launched earlier this month.

Users pay $50 a year to be members and in return they get the guarantee that the platform will always be open and it will never have advertising.

You can read more about what it could mean for journalists and news outlets in our Q&A with founder and chief executive of App.net Dalton Caldwell.

In this podcast Journalism.co.uk technology editor Sarah Marshall looks at what journalists should know about App.net.

The podcast hears from:

You can hear future podcasts by signing up to the Journalism.co.uk iTunes podcast feed.

 

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NY Times: ‘US editors still don’t want journalists to be human’

The New York Times has an article by Mathew Ingram of Gigaom who feels US news editors seem to be saying “don’t allow your journalists to be human, under any circumstances” when it comes to social media. The article is based on a social media policy overview from the American Society of News Editors which finds that “breaking news on Twitter is not advisable”, according to news editors.

There’s the typical media-industry bogeyman that lies behind most of these policies: the staffer who types things into Twitter without thinking, maybe even (gasp!) breaking news on the social network before his organisation has a chance to craft a story. And what happens then? Chaos! The very foundations of the media industry crumbling, dogs and cats living together — mass hysteria. None of that actually happens, of course, but most traditional media policies seem to harbor the fear that it might.

Ingram goes on to say:

To take just one example, the report mentions the case of Octavia Nasr, a senior editor at CNN with decades of experience in the Middle East, who posted something on Twitter expressing regret that a Hezbollah leader had died. Although he was known as a terrorist, Nasr said he was also a force for tolerance toward women in the region, and that’s why she said what she did. Defensible? Totally, as I wrote at the time. But CNN fired her. The ASNE report uses this as an example of why people should be careful what they say, but I think it’s an example of why organizations like CNN are dinosaurs.

Do people express themselves on social networks? Of course they do. Should they avoid being stupid or offensive? Yes. But to expect them to have no opinions — and then to fire or sanction them when they do — is naive in the extreme.

The report also states that breaking news on Twitter is not advisable — those kinds of reports should be saved for the newspaper, it says, because the purpose of social media is to “drive traffic” to the reporter or editor’s website. So presumably that means New York Times  media reporter Brian Stelter shouldn’t have re-tweeted the news that Osama bin Laden had been killed, and shouldn’t have pointed out how credible the report was because it came from the former Secretary of Defense’s chief of staff.

Ingram’s full article is at this link.

Are the social media policies of UK newsrooms more progressive than the US? Or is the message from editors that journalists should now be human and breaking news should not be the preserve of the newspaper?

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Vanityfair.com: Business Insider’s Henry Blodget vs Reuters’ Felix Salmon

Via Vanity Fair (and others) we learn of a tweet fight between former technology analyst and CEO of the Business Insider site, Henry Blodget, and Reuters’ financial journalist and blogger Felix Salmon.

It all started when Salmon poked fun – via Twitter – at Blodget’s business model and the way Business Insider had illustrated a banking story with a picture of two women kissing.

This kicked off a long dispute between the two over media strategy; not a simple old vs new spat, but an untangling of ethical issues for online publishers.

Never to miss a traffic opportunity, Blodget has posted the entire conversation on Business Insider here, in the form of a slideshow.

Blodget, fond of tweet by tweet mini-essays, also responded with a posting on business models.

Salmon then responded here, in length, on the Reuters blog.

Blogger and journalist Mathew Ingram has a thoughtful post on the whole episode at this link. An extract:

So what are smart online media outlets doing? Two things: One is focusing on building businesses such as conferences and events, as well as subscription-based, proprietary content (something Business Insider is also experimenting with). The other – and this is what I think Salmon was driving at – is thinking about traffic and pageviews in a different way. Not all pageviews are the same, and as a result not all CPMs are the same. Does forcing readers to click through multiple pages to view a slideshow add any real value? No. This is the digital equivalent of newspapers throwing extra copies into a ravine (or dumping them at a taxi stand) to boost circulation.

And elswhere on Twitter: Gawker’s founder Nick Denton backs Blodget, while writer Andrew Keen calls for the Business Insider CEO to return to Wall Street.

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#FollowJourn: @mathewi/communities editor

August 18th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Recommended journalists

#FollowJourn: Mathew Ingram

Who? Communities editor.

What? Works for the Globe and Mail, a prolific Twitterer on all things journalism and technology blogger.

Where? @matthewi

Contact? Take a look at his blog or email mathew [at] mathewingram.com.

Just as we like to supply you with fresh and innovative tips every day, we’re recommending journalists to follow online too. They might be from any sector of the industry: please send suggestions (you can nominate yourself) to judith or laura at journalism.co.uk; or to @journalismnews.

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Mathew Ingram: A list of posts about micropayments for news

February 11th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Newspapers

If you can bear it, a list of links to key recent articles covering the debate about whether micropayments could save the newspaper industry.

Full blog post at this link…

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