Tag Archives: thomson reuters

#ReutersEthics: Trust and Twitter debated at Thomson Reuters

“It’s good for trust in journalism to be low,” the Evening Standard’s executive editor said last night, “and we should feel like our back is against the wall”.

Taking part in the ‘What Price The News?’ debate on the ethics of modern journalism hosted by Thomson Reuters, the Evening Standard’s Anne McElvoy said that while society as a whole is less trusting, ‘it’s right for people to be skeptical’ about where their news is coming from.

Journalism will benefit, she claimed. “We’re not Mother Teresa – we don’t expect to have a high trust rating.”

Twitter ethics

The debate inevitably covered Twitter, and its value as a source of news. “Twitter was not designed to cover the world. It was designed to give a flavour of the conversation at the moment,” said Joe Lelyveld, Pulitzer prize winner and former New York Times journalist.

The panel also saw a use in ‘getting privileged information out there fast’, as with the Guardian-Trafigura case, but were wary of it becoming more than ‘just a tip-off service’ for journalists without subsequent fact checking.


While Nick Griffin sat in a BBC studio recording his appearance on the Question Time panel, the panel at Thomson Reuters considered how they would have dealt with the issue.

“It’s the responsibility of journalists in this country to report the hell out of this situation. You need to give your readers and viewers a truthful view of who this character is, and do so clearly, intelligently and aggressively,” said Lelyveld.

Sean Maguire, Reuters political and general news reporter, could see himself ‘making the same decision’ to allow Griffin on the programme. “It’s about time he showed himself up (…) Let’s turn the stone over and see what comes out.”

The situation paralleled the BBC’s contact with the Taliban, added Simon Robinson, European editor of Time magazine. “It was never going to change the outcome, but it is important to know what local people are thinking.”

Meanwhile Ray Snoddy, BBC Newswatch presenter and chair of the panel, wondered whether the BBC had ‘jumped the gun’ by letting Griffin appear before knowing the outcome of the court case concerning BNP membership.

The Thomson Reuters Foundation has produced an Ethics Handbook, copies of which have also been printed in Arabic and distributed to journalists in the Middle East thanks to a fund left by journalist Mona Megalli. The debate could be followed on Twitter (#ReutersEthics) and Reuters ran a live blog on its site.

Marion Dakers (@mvdakers) is an MA newspaper journalist student at City University.

Sunday Times: Breakingviews.com in ‘advanced talks’ with Thomson Reuters

The Sunday Times reports that Hugo Dixon is in ‘advanced talks’ to sell Breakingviews.com to Thomson Reuters – for a reported £10 million.

Dixon, former Lex editor at the Financial Times, co-founded the online financial analysis site in 1999 and could receive £2.7 million if the deal goes through. The other founder, Jonathan Ford, left in 2007 and has no remaining shares, according to the Sunday Times.

Full story at this link…

(via paidContent:UK)

‘There is a future for journalism, but it is a very expansive future,’ says conference organiser

Glyn Mottershead teaches newspaper journalism at the University of Cardiff. He blogs at http://egrommet.net/ and is @egrommet on Twitter.

Journalism will survive – but there’s no simple solution for how it gets there, or who is going to pay for it. That was the key message that underpinned the Future of Journalism conference at the Cardiff University School of Journalism, Media and Cultural studies last week.

Delegates from 42 countries gathered in the city to hear over 100 papers looking at the industry from a range of aspects:

  • New media technologies, blogs and UGC;
  • Sources; Ethics; Regulation; and Journalism practice;
  • Global journalism;
  • Education, training and employment of journalists; History
  • Business; Citizen/activist journalism

James Curran (professor of communications at Goldsmith’s College) and Bettina Peters (director of the Global Forum for Media Development) kicked off proceedings with their plenary address.

Curran’s plenary focused on different views of the future: the survivalists, the new media romantics and those who believe there is a crisis of democracy afoot.

Being passive is not an option for the industry or academics, he argued. It is futile to try and predict the future: the focus should be on moulding and shaping the future where the two can work together to keep journalism alive.

Bettina Peters of the Global Forum for Media Development questioned whether it was appropriate to try and export business models from the developed world to the developing world. She discussed the need for collaboration between the northern and southern hemispheres. Journalism needs to be looking at mixed funding models, she said.

She too was concerned that journalists and educators needed to engage in a global discussion to share ideas and solutions and that the conversations shouldn’t just be about money or tools – two key strands of current industry discussion both on- and off-line.

Jon Bramley from Thomson Reuters, John Horgan the Irish press ombudsman, and Kevin Z. Smith, president of the Society of Professional Journalists, were among the participants presenting papers. A full timetable can be found at this link [PDF].

Conference organiser Professor Bob Franklin, of the Cardiff School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies, was keen to stress that this wasn’t an academic talking shop – but a key place where journalists and those studying journalism can get together to share research and ideas from around the globe, something crucial given the massive changes taking place in the industry.

His view was that the conference showed there is no single future for journalism. This was echoed in roundtable talks with journalism educators who were finding it difficult to determine what media organisations need, while journalists in the room stated that the media didn’t know what it wants.

Professor Franklin, like many others at the conference, believes the key to the future of journalism depends on the platform and location: while newspapers are in decline in Europe and America they are thriving in India, and there is a rise in daily tabloids in urban South Africa – with a thriving market in used copies of newspapers.

“The conference was about the future of journalism, and that future looks very different from where you are standing,” said Franklin. “We were talking about possibilities, not about sowing gems of wisdom. There is a future for journalism, but it is a very expansive future.”

Video: Professor Alfred Hermida on the Future of Journalism

ReadWriteWeb: CNET signs up for Open Calais

CNET.com will now share data from its technology reviews, news and blog posts on using Thomson Reuters’ Open Calais platform, allowing other publishers to use the information.

According to this report, CNET will publish certain sets of editorial data and some commercial information, for example data on its software download services, using the semantic API.

Signing up to OpenCalais will also enable CNET to generate topic pages.

Full story at this link…

Press Gazette: ‘Studio in a suitcase’ for Reuters journalists

No longer backpack journalism – introducing, suitcase journalism: journalists at Thomson Reuters are to be kitted out with a lightweight video camera, microphone, lights, tripod and monitor.

The trial of the ‘studio in a suitcase’ will start in around 60 of the agency’s bureaux.

Full story at this link…

New York Observer: Newspapers should focus on what they’re good at, reduce staff, says Glocer

Newspapers can cut costs by concentrating on their strongest coverage, Tom Glocer, Thomson Reuters chief executive, told an industry gathering on Monday.

“Why does The New York Times need to have 600-700 journalists? Why not 30 journalists with 30 apprentices?” he said.

Full story at this link…

Reuters.co.uk: Put your questions to David Cameron via Twitter now

Reuters is hosting an interview with David Cameron via Twitter. This morning (Monday), from 10am, the Conservative party leader David Cameron is talking about the economy and the credit crunch at Thomson Reuters’ Canary Wharf office and his speech will be followed by a question and answer session. Users of Twitter can use the tag #askDC to put questions to Cameron, and Reuters will monitor all the responses. The questions are already coming in. The Reuters Newsmaker can be used to track all proceedings.

News agencies suspend Australian cricket coverage over online coverage terms

Reuters, Associated Press (AP) and Agence France Presse (AFP) will not cover matches, training sessions and events for cricket in Australia, because of ‘unacceptable accreditation terms’ set out by Cricket Australia, the sport’s governing body in the country.

According to a release from Reuters:

“No text stories, photos or video of any of the training sessions, matches, press conferences or events will be distributed by the international news agencies to media around the world for the first test against New Zealand later this month, and potentially for the South Africa test coming up in December.”

Reuters partner Getty Images will provide images and ‘fulfil their commercial obligations only’ e.g. not providing any editorial of the matches.

Rights organisation the News Media Coalition said the agencies had been in discussions with Cricket Australia for months before rejecting the terms, which featured several restrictions relating to online coverage including:

  • Rules on how newspaper websites can be updated
  • Veto power for Cricket Australia over which websites and non-sports magazines the agencies are allowed to syndicate content to
  • Restrictions affecting the distribution of content to mobile news services

“As in previous instances, this decision [the accreditation terms] compromises our ability to report independently and objectively, and comes at the expense of global fans and sponsors,” said Christoph Pleitgen, global head of News Agency for Thomson Reuters, in the release.

“We would like to resume our timely, premium coverage as quickly as possible, pending a solution to the current situation. However, freedom of the press and protecting the news interests and coverage rights of our global clients are at the core of both our business and Reuters editorial principles, and these must be upheld.”

Thomson Reuters gets social with Gordon Brown

Thomson Reuters went all out this morning in its coverage of Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s speech at the company’s London office.

First off the organisation’s own coverage: the Newsmaker event was twittered by Reuters journalist Mark Jones, whose updates were fed into a special microsite.

There was also video of the PM’s announcement originally livestreamed on Reuters’ website – including a handy dropdown menu that lets you skip through the clip to different key moments.

A full transcript and text article of the speech have also been published on the site.

But in addition to Reuters’ own reporting on the event was live footage streamed using mobile phones and hosting service Qik by social media bloggers Documentally and Sizemore.

“With Gordon Brown due to start talking on the present economic crisis what can two beardy blokes with a few laptops and small cameras possible hope to add?

“Well nothing directly on what is about to be said. I have as much interest in current politics as I did in marketing movies. I’m here with Christian [Documentally] to start conversations around the NewsMaker event that are currently not part of Reuter’s remit,” wrote Mike Atherton aka Sizemore in a blog post.

Below is Documentally’s mobile video of the Newsmaker:

The pair also used social media tools such as online site Phreadz, which builds multimedia forums around content submitted by users, to generate discussion around Brown’s speech.

“I sincerely hope that following today the idea of getting these events discussed on social media platforms such as Twitter, Seesmic and Phreadz becomes a natural part of the news media’s roadmap,” added Atherton.