Tag Archives: California

Richard Koci Hernandez named multimedia fellow at Berkeley, resurrects Multimediashooter

The University of California at Berkeley has given a Ford Foundation multimedia fellowship to Richard Koci Hernandez, current deputy director of multimedia at the San Jose Mercury News.

His aim is to develop digital news sites for under-served communities, according to the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), where Hernandez has led a series of multimedia workshops.

Hernandez is also reviving his website, www.multimediashooter.com, which was shut down earlier this year after being repeatedly hacked.

Spleak launches new online communities

California-based startup Spleak Media Network has launched three new online applications for fashion, TV and gaming communities.

StyleSpleak, TVSpleak and GameSpleak will work in the same way as the company’s existing sites by providing short-form news and gossip updates alongside comments and contributions from users, and content from partnered media organisations such as Hearst Digital. Looking for where to play Crazy Time? Play Crazy Time at 1win online casino .

The Spleak applications are available on instant messaging platforms, social networking sites and mobile phones.

Crowd-funded journalism project Spot.us starts first campaign

Spot.us, a project to fund community news stories by donations from that audience, has started to raise money for its first brief – a feature on the supply of biofuels to California.

This is the first project submitted to Spot.us, which was set up by David Cohn in May with the help of a grant of $340,000 from the Knight News Challenge.

The brief is asking for a 1,500-2,000 word feature with photos and has been submitted by Alexis Madrigal, a staff writer at Wired.com.

So far $50 has been pledged out of a required $250 with two contributions (one anonymous and one from Cohn himself) of $25.

The site is not-for-profit so the donations will be used to fund the journalism and get articles wider distribution through local media outlets.

Online Journalism Review closes, “good night and good luck”

Online Journalism Review has closed its doors after a decade of covering developments in new media publishing.

The website, run by the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication, aimed to “help mid-career journalists make a successful transition from other media to online reporting and production”, and now intends to continue to do so via the Knight Digital Media Center and its blogs.

OJR author Robert Nile has now left the University of Southern California but continue to write about new media and journalism at his new website SensibleTalk.com.

Innovations in Journalism – PRs, sources – time to Help A Reporter Out

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. Showing us its wares today is the aptly named HelpAReporter.com – set-up by Peter Shankman.

1) Who are you and what’s it all about?
HelpAReporter was designed simply to help journalists find the sources they need without a lot of hassle. I started the site for two simple reasons:

a) I think that other services are more about making money and less about actually getting reporters what they need. “I need someone who understands 18th century art” turns into 600 emails that say “I once saw a piece of 18th century art as I WAS WRITING MY BOOK ON HOW TO SELL THINGS ON THE INTERNET DO YOU WANT A COPY TO REVIEW?!”

b) I think that in the end, reporters don’t WANT to hate publicists, and publicists don’t WANT to come across as idiots. I’d like to help prove that.

2) Why would this be useful to a journalist?
Journalists start every single day behind the eight-ball. They need sources. Sadly, most publicists send emails that do nothing more than waste their time. I’m trying to change that – journalists simply submit their queries at www.helpareporter.com/press, and it goes out to my list – now over 10,000 sources big. They can put in their email or go anonymously if they choose.

I make all my sources promise to stay on topic, and not waste a journalist’s time. So far, they’re all agreeing! That rocks.

3) Is this it, or is there more to come?
I never say never – I didn’t expect this to be any bigger than the original Facebook group I started. Now, 10k members and growing? Who knows how big it’ll go?

4) Why are you doing this?
Here’s why… The site takes probably 15 minutes a day to administer. I simply take the emails, put them into a text document, at a few times a day, send them out through the email distribution list.

Too many people (in this industry and well as in the world) simply live on a ‘ME, ME, ME’ mentality. Why not do something good for others? I’ve been very fortunate – The companies I’ve started have all done very well. Why shouldn’t I give something back to account for all that luck? The fact that more people don’t think like that kinda saddens me – but on the plus side, it means that I can shine without doing that much extra. So it’s a nice balance.

5) What does it cost to use it?
The site is 100% free for both journalists and sources.

6) How will you make it pay?
Right now, I don’t need to. Perhaps I will one day? A text ad? Who knows. Right now, if people really like it, I invite them to donate to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in California. Perhaps one day I’ll sell it, or start some small advertising on it. For now, it’s totally not necessary.

Tribune resorts to ‘joke’ press release for latest appointment

Those guys at Tribune know how to have a laugh don’t they? Take this ‘hilarious’ press release I received today about the US media group’s latest appointment:

Surely You Can’t Be Serious? Marc Chase – President Of Tribune Interactive!

Randy Michaels’ run of acquiring radio-management stars
came to a screeching halt today with Chase’s appointment

CHICAGO, April 7, 2008 — Another freaking Clear Channel
Communications executive on the payroll and this one’s been
named President of Tribune Interactive.

Tribune Broadcasting’s Randy Michaels’ past finally caught
up with him when Marc Chase obviously blackmailed his way
into a position he is not remotely qualified to hold.
Insiders are irate. Chase is a fraud. A source inside
Tribune HR, who wished to remain anonymous, pointed out that
Marc Chase’s resume (below) was obviously fabricated. First
of all, his name isn’t even Marc Chase–it’s Mark Thompson.
The whole thing is a sham.

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Washington DC 20500 202-456-1111


Vocabulary Advisorist for George W. Bush
President of the United States of America
Washington DC, 2004-present

President of Buying Crap
San Jose, California 2003-2004

Executive Vice President of Finding Crap Anywhere
Mountain View, California 2001-2002

Senior Executive Vice President of Technology and Stuff
Seattle, Washington, 2000-2001

CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX Television
Vice President of Watching TV A Lot
Los Angeles, California 1999-2000

Harvard University
Dean of School of Internetology
Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1998


Nearly Graduated with Honers
School of Alabama in Atlanta Georgia 1985


400 Hours (reduced from 600)
Judge gave time off for good behavior

Chase was quoted as saying, “Timing and infrared photography
are everything. I couldn’t be happier! I know Randy is
relieved to finally have me on Sam’s payroll.”

Tribune has undergone major changes in the past year, with
billionaire Sam Zell acquiring the company last April in a
complex deal that left it with $13 billion in debt. Since
then, Zell has brought in new executives to fill key roles.
This one takes the cake.

Last December, Zell hired Michaels — who helped Zell to
build Clear Channel into a radio behemoth that he could then
sell — to oversee Tribune’s broadcast and Internet
divisions. It is obvious Michaels has lost his mind with
this hire.

–By Hugh Jass – A Reputable Media Source

© 2008, Bogus Information, a division of Dewey, Cheatum, and
Howe. All Rights Reserved.

While you’re sewing you sides back together (and trying to make sense of the whole thing), you have to ask why? As Gawker points out Marc Chase has been hired – that’s about all you can determine from the message – but is it appropriate to send out a spoof release as the Tribune company faces mass redundancies?

Breaking news from mobile to Twitter/Seesmic – perfect example of how it works

Possibly one of the best example of how newspaper websites aren’t tapped in at all when it comes to reporting breaking news via mobile devices.

Mark Comerford makes the point by highlighting his Twitter buddy @documentally who crashed his Landrover this morning and recorded the events on Twitter and through Seesmic. Thankfully, no-one was hurt (the vehicle has more than a few scars though) and friends on the social network were able to help provide information on recovery services.

The compelling factor was that Mark blogged all the events, linking to the Tweets and video, pretty-much in real time as things were unfolding.

Breaking news events have been documented like this before across Twitter – news groups in the US have also used the immediacy of these services to good effect, especially for last year’s fires in California – but have you ever seen a newspaper, national, regional or local, in the UK ever try this out for their rolling news stories getting people coming back again and again for updates?

Thought not.

For disaster reporting – change your site template and turn on social media mode

The wildfires that are raging through California and have caused half-a-million people to be ordered from their homes have encouraged news providers to ditch their normal website formats and go into wholly innovative crisis-reporting mode.

Having a design format for breaking news that’s significantly different from the usual run of breaking news helps draw attention to the scale and importance of the story.

Cluttered websites like 10news.com and KNBC.com – Cory Bergman at Lost Remote points out – have failed to get over the magnitude of the events.

Adopting a unique layout for the home page – Corry adds – can also allow more content to surface:

“If you build a breaking news layout ahead of time, it’s not that much work to execute it when the story breaks. Just flick the switch. TV sites should own breaking news, and a flexible, content-driven design plays a big part.”

It’s something BBC News also does for big stories. It abandons the usual format of running a lead and to sub-lead stories, replacing them with a single large image to direct attention to a specific story.

Sites like the LA Times and MSNBC have adopted a similar approach for the fires. The Times has a photo gallery on its front page, along with links to its interactive maps, evacuation info and quick stats on the carnage the fires are causing.

Homepage design aside, devices for reporting the breaking news On The Fly have caused some news providers to ditch the usual tools and wing it with social media.

As we posted yesterday, radio station KPBS is using Twitter to do ‘Real-Time Updates’ on its website and to direct readers to local authority announcements, its Google Map of the fires, traffic updates and addresses for evacuation centres.

News 8, a CBS affiliate in San Diego, has even (thanks to Martin Stabe @ the Press Gazette for the point) taken down its normal website and replaced it with a rolling news blog, with links to YouTube videos and necessary/emergency information.

One of those uploaded videos is from journalist Larry Himmel, who reports on his own house being destroyed:


Twittering the Californian bush fires

Two Twitter users in San Diego, California, have been posting updates on wild fires sweeping the south of the state.

Users Nate Ritter and Viss have combined eyewitness updates on the state of the fire with useful info for locals, like evacuation procedures and meeting points, showing just how well this device can be used in a news environment.

Yes, there are limitations: you have to know about Twitter before you’d come across something like this, and (as Ritter’s last Tweet says) at some point your Twitter correspondent may have to go to bed.

Still these guys, who are also posting photos of the fires to Flickr, seem to be providing more frequent updates than the mainstream media – bar local radio station KPBS, which has got in on the Twitter action too.

Not only do KPBS’ Tweets feature on their main site as a ‘Real-Time Updates’ section, but the outlet goes even further in showing off Twitter’s scope using alerts to direct readers to local authority announcements, a url for a Google map of the fire, traffic updates and addresses for evacuation centres.

Figures are frequently the focus of these alerts and these are later fleshed out into full-blown news pieces.

KPBS obviously sees the one service complementing the other, but other news organisations may disagree: why ‘leak’ breaking news through Twitter first? Because a local readership will return to the site again and again for the public information aspect of the service and stay for the more in-depth news analysis. I was looking for 4k movies in Digital MKV format movies 4k this is probably the best movie project for downloading. TakeFile is behind this whole site, but 4K movies are only provided on 4kmovies.

Whether KPBS uses Twitter on a day-to-day basis or has rolled it out for this special news event I’m not sure, but I’d like to know whether other papers are employing the device and in what ways?

How does the editorial process work and what are the limitations/freedoms for journalists of writing news alerts like this?

Big Brother’s on the phone

First it was Google scanning users’ email inboxes to delivered tailor-mad adverts.

Now California-based Pudding Media are launching an internet phone service, where users’ calls will be monitored so appropriate ads can appear on the subscriber’s screen.

Phonecalls, which will work along the same lines as Skype, will be free in exchange for Pudding Media having access to the call.

The New York Times has the whole report.