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Essential journalism links for students

June 30th, 2009 | 9 Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Journalism, Training

This list is doing the rounds under the headline 100 Best Blogs for Journalism Students… and we’re not on it. Nope, not even a smidgeon of link-love for poor old Journalism.co.uk there.

The BachelorsDegreeOnline site appears to be part of e-Learners.com, but it’s not clear who put the list together. Despite their omission of our content and their rather odd descriptions (e.g: Adrian Monck: ‘Adrian Monck writes this blog about how we inform ourselves and why we do it’), we admit it is a pretty comprehensive list; excellent people and organisations we feature on the site, our blog roll and Best of Blogs mix – including many UK-based ones. There were also ones we hadn’t come across before.

In true web 2.0 self-promotional style, here are our own links which any future list-compilers might like to consider as helpful links for journalism students:

And here are some blogs/sites also left off the list which immediately spring to mind as important reading for any (particularly UK-based) journalism students:

Organisations

  • Crikey.com: news from down under that’s not Murdoch, or Fairfax produced.
  • Press Review Blog (a Media Standards Trust project) – it’s a newbie, but already in the favourites.
  • StinkyJournalism: it’s passionate and has produced many high-profile stories

Individuals

  • CurryBet – Martin Belam’s links are canny, and provocative and break down the division between tech and journalism.
  • Malcolm Coles – for SEO tips and off-the-beaten track spottings.
  • Dave Lee – facilitating conversations journalists could never have had in the days before blogs.
  • Marc Vallee – photography freedom issues from the protest frontline.
  • FleetStreetBlues: an anonymous industry insider with jobs, witty titbits and a healthy dose of online cynicism.
  • Sarah Hartley previously as above, now with more online strategy thrown in.
  • Charles Arthur – for lively debate on PR strategy, among other things

Writing this has only brought home further the realisation that omissions are par for the course with list-compilation, but it does inspire us to do our own 101 essential links for global online journalists – trainees or otherwise. We’d also like to make our list inclusive of material that is useful for, but not necessarily about, journalists: MySociety for example.

Add suggestions below, via @journalismnews or drop judith at journalism.co.uk an email.

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ASNE: Newspaper staff numbers fall, as online journalists rise

April 22nd, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Job losses, Jobs, Newspapers

Missed this release from the American Society of News Editors (ASNE) detailing the results of its annual employment survey in the US daily newspaper industry.

Figures from last year suggest a loss of 5,900 newsroom jobs at daily newspapers – a drop in journalists of 11.3 per cent.

In contrast, the 2008 survey suggests 2,300 newsroom journalists were working online-only – and increase of 600 from 2007.

Full release at this link…

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Affleck on the media: will ‘State of Play’ be the last film set in a newspaper?

April 16th, 2009 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Editors' pick, Journalism, Newspapers

‘State of Play’ is on the publicity circuit, a film – based on a BBC series – which follows events in a fictional newspaper, the Washington Globe.

“The film’s fictitious Washington Globe, like its real-life counterparts, is struggling for survival, and within its walls are plenty of internal battles. Old-school reporter Cal McAffrey (Russell Crowe) resents the intrusion of young blogger Della Frye (Rachel McAdams) into his investigation of a murder seemingly connected to a local congressman (Ben Affleck),” reports the Seattle Times.

Ben Affleck has shared his thoughts on the demise of the print industry with a group of journalists.

His lengthy comments can be found at Hitfix and over at Collider.com and About.com.

HitFix reports:

“”I think this is the last movie that will be set in a newspaper. I don’t know how this movie will be perceived, but I do believe that people will look back and say, ‘Oh yeah, that was the movie that came out right around the time the internet destroyed newspapers’,” Affleck appropriately tells a room of online journalists at the “State of Play” junket. “I don’t think the verdict is in on what that means or what’s going to happen or what the integrity is of one institution versus the other.”

Poynter’s Romenesko has also picked up on his comments about the Boston Globe: “”I was definitely shocked to hear about the Globe,” says Ben Affleck. “I fundamentally misunderstood what was going on. Boston.com has 5.6 million readers a month, and yet this hugely successful newsgathering operation is going out of business.””

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CPJ releases ‘Attacks on the Press in 2008′ report

February 11th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Press freedom and ethics

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) released its ‘Attacks on the Press in 2008′ report yesterday and speaking in the preface, Carl Bernstein made two comments that neatly highlight the duplicitious nature of the web when it comes to press freedom:

“[T]he tension between technology and outright repression – the availability of satellite television, the use of the internet as impetus for growth and economic modernization – has rendered obsolete the old methods of press control and suppression of information such as media nationalization and overt censorship.

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“In China, which now has more than a quarter billion online users, self-censorship is enforced through government rules and regulations that guide Internet service providers about what news can be posted and who can post it (…) In every country following the Chinese model, internet access has been severely restricted or the plug pulled entirely during periods of potential social unrest.”

Last year CPJ’s imprisonment index noted that more online journalists were in jail than those working in any other media.

While the US’ ranking in terms of imprisoned journalists is low, the country’s actions have ‘a disproportionate impact’ on the rest of the world. With a new administration comes new hope for global press freedom, Bernstein adds.

“President Barack Obama must recognise that whenever the United States fails to uphold press freedom at home or on the battlefield, its actions ripple across the world. By scrupulously upholding press freedom at home, by ending the practice of open-ended detentions of journalists, and by investigating and learning from each instance in which the US military is responsible for the death of a journalist, Obama can send an unequivocal message about the country’s commitment to protecting press freedom. These policies might accelerate declines in the numbers of journalists killed and imprisoned. They will certainly make it much harder for governments worldwide to justify repressive policies by citing the actions of the United States.”

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Ben Goldacre on how blogs can be ‘more reliable’ than mainstream media

January 20th, 2009 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Multimedia, Online Journalism

Courtesy of Conrad Quilty-Harper, of the Spalpeen blog, here’s Dr Ben Goldacre on video talking about Bad Science… in a toilet (Goldacre’s choice, apparently). With little fear of the germs, Goldacre puts the loo seat down (about halfway through) and summarizes his thoughts on sensationalised science reporting.

Perhaps most interestingly for online journalists he airs his thought on media reliability: around the seven minute mark Goldacre says:

“…blogs are potentially more reliable than mainstream media ever was – mainly because you can check for each individual blog author, how credible they are, because bloggers link to primary resources…”

His thoughts on journalists and their deliberate disguising of sources (for example, not making it clear they’re quoting a press release) are worth a listen.

The doc’s getting about in the mainstream media too: he was on BBC Radio 4 (again) yesterday, featuring on ‘Start the Week‘.

Here’s the original Spalpeen video:


Ben Goldacre of Bad Science talks about Sensationalised Science Reporting from Conrad on Vimeo.

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Journalism.co.uk’s top 10… journo-lists

December 17th, 2008 | 3 Comments | Posted by in Journalism

It’s the time of year again for reviews of 2008, top tens, gift guides and all the rest.

Not another list post, I hear you cry. Would we do that to you, us, Journalism.co.uk?

Well, yes, we would.

For your listing pleasure here’s our 10 of the best of the journo-related variety:

  1. 1. Regret the Error’s ‘The Year in Media Errors and Corrections’ – as the title suggests.
  2. 2. Google’s Zeitgeist 2008 – the most commonly searched for and ‘fastest rising’ words and phrases of the year.
  3. 3. 10,000 Words blog’s top 10 posts of the year – and the stories behind them. (This list even includes other list posts, so we’re getting into the spirit now)
  4. 4. I Want Media’s Media Person of the Year 2008 – Ariana Huffington beats off competition from Rupert Murdoch and Eric Schmidt of Google.
  5. 5. Journalisted – okay, so it doesn’t include web journos rather mainly UK print writers, but the journalists listed in this searchable directory is growing.
  6. 6. Another one from 10,000 Words – ’30 must have gifts for journalists’ in true festive, gift guide style.
  7. 7. The leaked BNP member’s list – not a list we’d choose to republish, but it certainly sent our blog traffic into overdrive and raised some questions about reporting data leaks.
  8. 8. The Committee to Protect Journalists’ index of imprisoned journalists (CPJ) – another sobering entry, but this year’s list from the CPJ found more online journalists were imprisoned as of December 1 than those working in other media.
  9. 9. Top Twitterers – not just journalists, but a lovely superficial list and good to see @stephenfry in 16th with only 155 days under his belt at time of writing.
  10. 10. This post.

This isn’t the definitive list it could be – online lists can grow – so feel free to add others/plug your own.

UPDATE - some new additions to the pile:

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Innovations in Journalism – MediaGeeks

July 18th, 2008 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Search

We give developers the opportunity to tell us journalists why we should sit up and pay attention to the sites and devices they are working on. So how about a search engine for the media? Welcome Mediageeks.org.

1) Who are you and what’s it all about?
I’m Howard Owens, I’ve been doing online media for 13 years and am a bit of a geek about it.

When I first started thinking about launching a site like [the journalism social network] WiredJournalists.com, I registered the domain MediaGeeks.org. I wanted to create a social network for media geeks just like me.

When Ryan Sholin and Zac Echola and I started talking about the concept that became WiredJournalists.com, they weren’t so sold on “media geeks,” so I had this domain sitting around … and I had been wanting to play with building niche/vertical search engines with Google. I launched my first vertical search engine for RVClub.com in 1998 (with the help of now defunct WaveShift), so this is a concept of long-standing interest.

2) Why would this be useful to a journalist?

Because it allows you to have a search filtered to just media/journalistic topics. Let’s say you’re curious about what media people say about coverage of Paris Hilton … well, a general Google search for ‘Paris Hilton and media’ won’t be fruitful, because of the gazzillion of non-media hits.This search filters out all the non-media sites, so you can get right to the heart of what media publications and media bloggers might be saying about PH and coverage of her.

That’s just an example, but it should point the way to how you can leverage a more filtered search of just media-related sites.

3) Is this it, or is there more to come?

It probably won’t get any more attention, except for adding more media sites as they came along. Google has upgraded the API for the Business Edition of its search product, but not the free version. I’m not sure I’ll have time to do any fancy programming to improve the search engine should those upgrades become available to the free version.

4) Why are you doing this?

Because I thought it would be useful to me (and it has been, though not as useful a I had hoped because even Google search doesn’t always work as well as it should), so I hoped it would be useful to others. Not many people use it, though – I’m not sure if that’s because it’s a bad idea, or a lack of publicity.

I suppose you could argue in a networked world, if it were a good idea, it would have caught on by now. But it’s free to me, essentially, so right now I see no reason to take it down. Maybe it will catch on yet.

5) What does it cost to use it?
It’s free.

6) How will you make it pay?
I don’t need to make it pay, but I would love it if people started using it and some of those Google ads got clicked on once in a while (all out of legitimate interest in the advertiser’s message, of course), and I got to make a little extra money each month. That would be great, but not required.

There is an aspect, too, of giving back to the community, which isn’t something you hear online journalists talk about much these days, but used to be a big concept of being a Netizen a decade ago or so. So, even while the site hasn’t caught on, it is at some level an attempt to give back for all the goodness I get from the web and the online media community.

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