Tagged: Virtual300

Virtual300: Hard Work Pays Off


Coming into this semester of Online Journalism, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I had never taken a class with Jill, but I’d heard lots of stories…mostly good ones. 

After I read the syllabus for the first time, I will admit I was a little nervous about what was to come this semester.

The first objective we were supposed to learn was how to publish text and media online.  There are lots of different ways to do this, some of which I was unaware of before the semester.

In class, we learned about different blogs like Tumblr and WordPress.  We also learned about phone apps like Instagram.  We took this a step further in ways to publish multimedia online. 

Websites like meograph, slideshare, and soundcloud offer simple ways to publish your work online.  To view any of these websites, simply click on the name and you will be directed to their page.  

Another objective for this class was how to be proficient in social media and different blogs. 

Whether it is Facebook, Twitter, or Google+, it was a must to understand these social media outlets in and out. 

Here is a link to an article explaining the importance of social media.  To view the article click here.

Next, it was important to know how influential Journalism is and the current industry trends at the time.  

One way to achieve this is by following major Journalism titans on Twitter.  This keeps your feed updated with important news that pertains to Journalism and its inner workings.  

This was the first journalism class that I’ve had to work in multimedia into my stories in a major way.  This was very new for me as I have little to no experience with multimedia.  

I was skeptical about how important multimedia was to stories until we read an article in the New York Times called Snow Fall.  This article showed me that multimedia does matter, and can add a whole different dimension to a story.

To read the Snow Fall article and see the wonderful multimedia aspect click here.

After reading this story, I put more time and effort into trying to make the multimedia in my stories better and make sure that they have a positive effect on the story.  

For another article on how multimedia in Journalism is important click here

Lastly, the stories we did write, we had to publish on WordPress.com.  This was a huge process that took a lot of time, but paid off in the end.  

This process helped me understand the importance of getting the parts of the stories uploaded correctly and in a visually pleasing order.  

The upload process is almost as important as the actual writing of the story because if your text and media aren’t uploaded right the whole story could be compromised.

We also learned how to upload photos to WordPress as an alternative to other websites like slideshare.

For a tutorial on how to use the different aspects of WordPress click here.  

Overall, the objectives of this class were at some points overwhelming.  But, in the end all that hard work payed off.  I now believe I’m ready to enter the Journalism world because I know how to make my stories multi-dimensioned.  




Evolution of Journalism


The field of journalism is ever evolving.  Over the past few decades the way news is portrayed to an audience has changed in a lot of aspects.

No longer are newspapers and television the only way to get news.  Online media along with the rise of mobile news have changed the landscape of the journalism profession.

It’s only logical to believe that mobile and online sources will become the leader in the ways to access your daily/weekly news.

However, I don’t think that newspaper and television news isn’t relevant anymore.

The rise of tablets and smartphones are the main contributing factor when it comes to the increase in mobile news.

But, mobile news isn’t replacing the old ways of receiving news they are aiding it.  43% of tablet users say they are adding to their news consumption with a mobile device, not replacing it.

One good example of this is the “Second Screen Phenomenon.”  This is the idea that people watching the news on television also have their laptops open viewing news on both screens.

This is a goldmine for news and ad promoters.  Having two screens active gives journalists a way to interact with their readers in many different ways, especially if the event is live.

Social media is also throwing its hat in the ring of ways to get news.  In 2012 almost 19% of consumers say news on a social media outlet “yesterday,” according to a study done by Pew Research Center.

This is a major step up from that figure in 2010 that was only around nine percent.

Social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter have come out with lots of different ways to aid journalists in the past few years.

Things like subscriptions on Facebook, video posting on Twitter, and a new search engine on Facebook, that have made it easier for journalists to get their news out.

But, focusing on just the two powerhouse social media sites isn’t enough anymore.  Using other sites is going to be a necessity in the coming years.

Digital advertising is another huge part of the media experience.  But the problem isn’t with the digital ads.  It’s with who controls them.

For the first time since 2011, digital ads outplaced newspaper ads.  But, the main problem is that the “online titans” like Facebook, Google, and Yahoo control the majority of the income from digital ads.

The amount of money that these major corporations make off digital ads leaves little to no room for news companies to make any money.

One part of digital advertising that is booming in growth is video advertisements online.

A lot of Americans watch online videos on a daily basis.  The ways to advertise on videos online are endless.  Whether it be videos, streams, or news online video advertisements are becoming more and more important.

Lastly, one of the newer forms of getting news out are apps running on HTML5.

These programs are web apps that function like apps you would buy in the App Store or Android Market, but you don’t have to download them they are online based.

The limited amount of time and examples haven’t yet given a clear answer whether apps running on HTML5 are cost effective or not.  But only time will tell.

Overall, media and journalism are evolving more than we know.  It’s not that it’s shifting totally one way or the other, it’s just that we, as journalists, need to be versed in every different outlet of media.

Click Here to see an example of how mobile ads are changing the social media landscape.

Newspapers aren’t dying out.  Click Here to see a few success stories of newspapers in smaller markets that are still going strong.

Snow Fall: Blog Post #1

5605213905_a7124c8f23First, I want to say that this was easily one of the best and most well written stories I’ve ever read. When I first looked at it I realized the length and almost dreaded starting it. But once I got started it just rolled along so quickly.
What blew me away about his piece was the enormity of the story and all of its details. The way it was written gave great insight to what actually happened.
One thing I noticed was how the story itself was structured. It started with an excerpt from Elyse Saugstad, one of the skiers. It detailed what was going through her mind after this avalanche had hit. But after that it almost started the story over and worked its way back to that moment.
I think that this story basically sums up the semester so far in Online Journalism. It shows that you have to be creative with your story. It also shows that adding multimedia gives the story a whole different dimension.
The multimedia in this story was awesome. The different videos, photos, and graphics made it much easier to follow and understand. The thing I liked the most was in the “Decent” part it showed pictures and names of all the members of the group, and gave perspective on who all was in the group and make it easy to identify each person.
This story is inspiring to me as a student journalist for several reasons. First, I can only hope to get a story like this in my lifetime. The emotion that I felt in this story was crazy. It was a story that not only told a story, but also gave background on the location and other details of the background.
Second, I feel like this is something I want to now work towards. Getting a story of this magnitude and having all the multimedia is something I wish for my own work. This makes me want to experiment with different kinds of multimedia and also work on getting more creative with the layout of my stories.
As a reader, I thought the story was really well written. I thought that the media that the writer used made a different dimension of the story and helped me understand what was going on better.
Also, I thought that the best thing about how the story was written was how the internal timeline of the story worked. It bounced around, which kind of confused me at first, but once I realized how the events were playing out…I totally grasped it and appreciated it.
Overall, this story was very powerful. To see what went on in all these people’s minds, and how they reacted to such horrifying events, put things in perspective.
The hardest part for me, was reading the reaction of the loved ones after the avalanche has happened. I can only imagine what went through their minds as they found out the people they had seen that morning weren’t coming home.