Tag Archives: live reporting

Revised guidance on live court reporting due Wednesday

Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge is due to outline “revised practice guidance” on “electronic text-based communications” tomorrow (Wednesday, 13 December), in a follow-up to interim guidance issued a year ago.

In December 2010 England and Wales’ most senior judge provided guidance which said individuals could be granted permission to use a mobile phone or other small electronic device “in order to make live text-based communications of the proceedings”, as long as they had made a prior application to the court.

At the time the guidance emphasised that permission for live reporting of court proceedings would only be granted based on each individual case.

According to a press notice, since issuing this guidance the Lord Chief Justice has run a consultation which has included contributions from figures such as the Secretary of State for Justice and Attorney General as well as bodies such as the Press Complaints Commission and Society of Editors.

Once the guidance is outlined in court it will be published online, the notice added.

Live journalism and the power of links #hhldn

Last week’s busy London Hacks and Hackers event brought together two very different approaches to using the web as a storytelling medium.

Two talks at last Wednesday’s event for journalists and programmers explored live reporting via Twitter and the use of linked data at the BBC’s entertainment department.

Sky News journalist Neal Mann, who has co-ordinated live coverage of some of the biggest stories in recent years, shared tips on live reporting – many of them focused on making sure to be fully prepared.

He suggested creating a list of useful and informative links on a chosen subject so that in slow moments context and detail can be added to live coverage, reminding journalists that on social media the audience looks for “speed, balance and a background view”.

In response to organiser Joanna Geary‘s question about coping with low battery life on the iPhone and other gadgets, he suggested taking battery packs and spares where possible, pointing out to live reporters that “if your battery goes, you’re screwed”.

Mann also advised journalists to remember their potential reach does not end when a live event finishes. He recommended using Storify or similar technology to round up the work done during the day and put it in context alongside other people’s coverage.

And on the subject of reach, he said he learned a valuable lesson when his Twitpic of a Sun front page went viral and garnered more than 30,000 views – but was not hosted on his own site and therefore didn’t drive his personal brand as well as it could.

BBC senior information architect Paul Rissen provided a contrasting approach to storytelling with his talk on how the BBC is using linked data and the semantic web to create and augment narrative.

He began by suggesting news organisations on the web today are still confined by their roots in print, audio and video, and that even the best infographics often fail to take advantage of the interconnectedness of the internet as a medium.

He discussed the Mythology Engine, a proof-of-concept prototype created for BBC Vision, which uses carefully structured data to map stories and events onto programmes.

Using the example of Doctor Who, the prototype moves beyond a series of pages representing episodes, series and properties, and expands to create pages for events, characters and stories.

The result, Rissen explained, is a constellation of connected pages where the meaningful relationships between people, stories and programmes are just as important as the entities themselves.

He suggested this sort of deep structured project is a way of telling stories that is truly native to the web, creating rich environments that take advantage of the multimedia possibilities online.

Rissen added this format may also work for sport and news, using the example of BBC Sport which has pages for matches, countries and players, but not individual goals.

He suggested the semantic web could offer news organisations new ways to organise context and make exploration and navigation both intuitive and enjoyable for users.

Journalism student tries high-speed live reporting at Chinese Grand Prix

The past two weeks have seen staff and students from Coventry University discovering the sights and sounds of the People’s Republic of China. Among the group here on an exchange programme organised by the university and its Chinese partner, Zhejiang University of Media and Communications (ZUMC), are 11 journalism students who have been reporting online at cutoday.wordpress.com – a blog started in March 2008 that has so far generated 60,000-plus hits.

Last week I attended the Chinese Grand Prix at Shanghai International Circuit in order to produce a live report for the blog. I was there as a guest of the BMW Sauber Team and despite a disappointing turn of events for the Swiss competitors the day was a great opportunity for me.

I was unsure how best to approach the live feed at first. I am familiar with the workings of hard news reporting and feature writing, but I’ve never had to produce a blow-by-blow account of a live event. I decided to adopt a relaxed, conversational approach, but also make every effort to post relevant information for the readers’ benefit.

Vikki Howe, a final year journalism student at Coventry University, continually monitored the TV screens and live timing feeds in the BMW Sauber hospitality suite. This allowed me to focus entirely on my short, concise post entries. BBC Radio 5 Live and the BBC Sport website turned out to be very useful sources for fact checking.

It was an interesting experience, and the reaction from readers was favourable, with a number of people sending me emails of congratulations and, more importantly, recommending the blog to others.

Live reporting, I found out, is fast. At times I felt like the speed of my reporting needed to match the speeds being set on the track. Well, perhaps not quite that fast, but you get the idea.