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May 21 2013

22:02

Two pieces of information

Two pieces of information that came to my attention today:

Firstly, from a piece of research on aspiring journalists in France:

“Students from the least privileged social sectors are more socially committed and more aware of their civic responsibility: These students want “to reveal cases of corruption, show realities that are unknown to the general public, and to do investigative journalism”.

“The students belonging to disadvantaged social classes value the profession of journalism the most, and have a culture of effort and selflessness, which has been inherited from their families. The force lifting the social elevator to access an intellectual profession like journalism is their constant effort. They consider journalism to be a “useful and noble” profession. They have a more romantic and social view of the profession: they want to be a real communication channel for the village people, the forgotten, and the voiceless … However, these students practice self-censorship by not working in recognised and prestigious media, unlike the students from more privileged social classes who do so because they have greater social capital and contacts in the profession of journalism thanks to their families.”

Secondly, from a number of sources on Twitter:

“Independent.co.uk is offering a rare opportunity to an aspiring young journalist. We’re looking for an exceptionally motivated, intelligent and organised undergraduate with a passion for our brand, the world of news, and student life, to come and gain work experience within our Digital team for three months this summer 2013.

“You must be able to work from Monday 17 June through to 30 August 2013. This is work experience, so it is not a paid opportunity, but your travel and lunch expenses will be covered. You will need to provide a letter from your university, confirming that this work experience placement is beneficial and supports your course.”

Over to you.

22:02

Two pieces of information

Two pieces of information that came to my attention today:

Firstly, from a piece of research on aspiring journalists in France:

“Students from the least privileged social sectors are more socially committed and more aware of their civic responsibility: These students want “to reveal cases of corruption, show realities that are unknown to the general public, and to do investigative journalism”.

“The students belonging to disadvantaged social classes value the profession of journalism the most, and have a culture of effort and selflessness, which has been inherited from their families. The force lifting the social elevator to access an intellectual profession like journalism is their constant effort. They consider journalism to be a “useful and noble” profession. They have a more romantic and social view of the profession: they want to be a real communication channel for the village people, the forgotten, and the voiceless … However, these students practice self-censorship by not working in recognised and prestigious media, unlike the students from more privileged social classes who do so because they have greater social capital and contacts in the profession of journalism thanks to their families.”

Secondly, from a number of sources on Twitter:

“Independent.co.uk is offering a rare opportunity to an aspiring young journalist. We’re looking for an exceptionally motivated, intelligent and organised undergraduate with a passion for our brand, the world of news, and student life, to come and gain work experience within our Digital team for three months this summer 2013.

“You must be able to work from Monday 17 June through to 30 August 2013. This is work experience, so it is not a paid opportunity, but your travel and lunch expenses will be covered. You will need to provide a letter from your university, confirming that this work experience placement is beneficial and supports your course.”

Over to you.

January 12 2011

20:23

The Independent’s Facebook revolution

Like Robert Fisk

The Independent newspaper has introduced a fascinating new feature on the site that allows users to follow articles by individual writers and news about specific football teams via Facebook.

It’s one of those ideas so simple you wonder why no one else appears to have done it before: instead of just ‘liking’ individual articles, or having to trudge off to Facebook to see if there’s a relevant page you can become a fan of, the Indie have applied the technology behind the ‘Like’ button to make the process of following specific news feeds more intuitive.

To that end, you can pick your favourite football team from this page or click on the ‘Like’ button at the head of any commentator’s homepage. The Independent’s Jack Riley says that the feature will be rolled out to columnists next, followed by public figures, places, political parties, and countries.

The move is likely to pour extra fuel on the overblown ‘RSS is dying‘ discussion that has been taking place recently. The Guardian’s hugely impressive hackable RSS feeds (with full content) are somewhat put in the shade by this move – but then the Guardian have generated enormous goodwill in the development community for that, and continue to innovate. Both strategies have benefits.

At the moment the Independent’s new Facebook feature is plugged at the end of each article by the relevant commentator or about a particular club. It’s not the best place to put given how many people read articles through to the end, nor the best designed to catch the eye, and it will be interesting to see whether the placement and design changes as the feature is rolled out.

It will also be interesting to see how quickly other news organisations copy the innovation.

More coverage at Read Write Web and Future of Media.

August 11 2010

10:56

Subs’ Standards: A sub-editor’s defence of Wanky Balls

Following yesterday’s post on the perils of wikipedia as source material, Fiona Cullinan takes a look at sub-editing errors from a sub’s perspective and takes issue with those who simply brand it “lazy journalism”.

There’s such a thing as “lazy commenting” too, she says, and plenty of reasons other than laziness that can cause such errors, funny as they may be.

Full post on Subs’ Standards at this link…Similar Posts:



May 25 2010

15:43

Independent integrates article comments with Twitter and Facebook

The Independent has installed a new commenting system on its website in the shape of Disqus – the same as we use on Journalism.co.uk no less.

The system allows users to login to leave a comment using a Disqus profile, but also, and more importantly, with their Twitter username and password, Facebook login or OpenId identification.

With the Twitter and Facebook logins there’s also the option to share your article comment via these sites.

Jack Riley, digital media editor at the Independent, explains in a blog post that the new system has been trialled on the site’s sport section for the past week and has improved the level of “constructive debate”.

We’re encouraging people to use credentials linked to their personal profiles not just because openness and accountability are great, fundamental things which underpin good journalism as well as good commenting (and why should the two be different?), but also because by introducing accountability into the equation, we’re hoping the tone and standard of the comments will go up (…) It’s about first of all letting people authenticate their commenting using systems with which they’re already familiar (in Facebook’s case, that’s 400 million people worldwide and counting), and secondly, it’s about restoring your trust in our comments section, so that some of the really great submissions we get on there rise to the top, the bad sink to the bottom, and the ugly – the spam and abuse that are an inevitable adjunct of any commenting system – don’t appear at all.

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May 04 2010

10:41

Independent journalist attacked while investigating voting fraud

A journalist investigating voting fraud in the UK was attacked yesterday while on a reporting job.

Jerome Taylor was repeatedly punched and kick by the group of attackers, who approached him in Bow, east London, where Taylor was looking to speak to a local election candidate about allegations of postal vote fraud.

He describes the ordeal in an article on Independent.co.uk today:

I don’t know how long it lasted – it was probably only a minute – but it was a long minute. I don’t remember them saying anything as they did it. The first noise I was aware of was the beeping of a car horn and a woman screaming.

The noise brought a man out of a nearby block of flats. With little regard for his own safety he waded in and defended me until my attackers ran away.

Full story at this link…

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March 26 2010

08:17

March 12 2010

17:51

February 27 2010

22:02

February 23 2010

10:16

January 27 2010

17:01

The Indy’s new wall

Independent.co.uk has a new wall, but it’s not of the Murdochian sort. It’s a News Wall displaying free content.

“It’s basically just a different way of presenting content. It simply pulls in new stories which have pictures attached and presents them,” editorial director for digital, Jimmy Leach, told Journalism.co.uk.

“It’s an aggregator of our own content, but trying to be an engaging one. Partly different presentation and partly, to be honest, an SEO play, giving the spiders something to crawl over,” he said.

Meanwhile, one of his colleagues, Pandora diarist Alice Azania Jarvis,  isn’t entirely convinced. But what’s it for, she tweeted. Leach replied: “It’s a wall. It has news on it. It’s the News Wall. C’mon, what else do you need?”

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November 26 2009

10:03

#Followjourn: @iburrell / media editor

#FollowJourn: Ian Burrell

Who? Media editor, the Independent.

What? Covers media industry news for the Independent newspaper and site.

Where? On Twitter he’s @iburrell. Follow his work at Independent.co.uk and on the Independent Minds blog.

Contact? Via the Independent or on Twitter.

Just as we like to supply you with fresh and innovative tips every day, we’re recommending journalists to follow online too. They might be from any sector of the industry: please send suggestions (you can nominate yourself) to judith or laura at journalism.co.uk; or to @journalismnews.

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November 25 2009

07:59

November 23 2009

05:58

November 08 2009

21:28

Twit-Fit of the Week: It’s Monday, so let’s Wibble about Twitter…

Articles in newspapers complaining about bloggers and twitter users seem to come along like bills from the taxman – at a rate of about 5 a week.

We have had the remarkable exhibit of Janet Street-Porter (or “Janet Self-Publicist”) complaining about “publicity seeking bloggers“, and more recently Rachel Sylvester starting a pop-psychology consultancy practice for sad and lonely individuals possessed by the Twitter demon.

Last Monday, Nicholas Lezard, the usually literate writer for the Guardian and the Independent, had what I would call a “Twit-Fit”, wibbling furiously for an entire 700 words against Twitter – here.

This is my commentary cum translation. A little light relief for a Sunday, and I hope that Paul Bradshaw doesn’t give me an ASBO.

So you’re eating lunch? Fascinating

(I only read boring Twitter accounts)

Stephen Fry … Twitter

(faux introductory wibble … let’s set up the target)

I have nothing against Stephen Fry

(lots of my friends use Twitter, so I am not prejudiced … I have the right to quibble wibble)

but I CERTAINLY have something against Twitter

(pop-polemical wibble)

The name tells us straightaway

(pop-etymological wibble)

it’s inconsequential, background noise, a waste of time and space

(unintentionally self-revelatory wibble)

Actually, the name does a disservice to the sounds birds make, which are, for the birds, significant, and, for the humans, soothing and, if you’re Messiaen, inspirational

(arty-farty-Primrose-Hill-party wibble)

But Twitter? Inspirational?

(well, it isn’t when you can’t hear for your own ranting)

The online phenonemon is about humanity disappearing up it’s own fundament, or the air leaking out of the whole Enlightenment project

(I just managed to look over Nigel Molesworth’s shoulder, and I cribbed a bit from his 2nd year philosophy test, Hem-Hem)

It makes blogging look like literature

(I have a whole quiverful of cookie-cutter stereotypes, and boy am I going to use them)

It’s anti-literature, the new opium of the masses

(Clickety-click! I taught Blue Peter how to prepare things earlier, and this one is from 1843)

It’s unreflective instantaneousness encourages neurotic behaviour in both the Tweeter and the Twatters

(Dear Damien Hirst, can I be your Press Officer ? )

Seriously, the Americans have proposed that “twatted” should be the past participle of “tweet”

(Obviously there are 300 million identical cardboard-cut-out idiots across the pond. Perhaps “stereotroped” should be the past participle of “stereotype”)

It encourages us in the delusion that our random thoughts, our banal experiences, are significant

(I want to be Alain de Botton when I grow up, Blankety-Blank)

It is masturbatory and infantile, and the amazing thing is that people can’t get enough of it – possibly because it IS masturbatory and infantile

(or ############, Yankety-Yank)

(redacted to avoid being sued by a certain award-winning journalist)

Oh God, that it should have come to this. Centuries of human thought and experience drowned out in a maelstrom of inconsequential rubbish.

(Does Andrew Keen or David Aaronovitch need a ghost-writer for when they are on holiday? )

Don’t tell me about Trafigura – one good deed is not enough

( don’t tell me about the hundreds of other achievements either; the last thing I need is facts – or reality – interfering with my opinions)

(My Rachel Sylvester piece includes a list of about 10 examples of how Twitter can be used positively that I compiled last March).

and an ordinary online campaign would have done the trick just as well

(bollocks …. no other online forum has anything like the permeability or reaction speed of Twitter)

It is like some horrible science-fiction prediction come to pass: it is not just that Twitter signals the end of nuanced, reflective, authoritative thought – it’s that no one seems to mind

(pleeeeeeeease … SOMEBODY … I’ll even write leaders for the Daily Mail)

And I suspect that it’s psychologically dangerous

( Was it Twitter that did for Gordon Brown?)

We have evolved over millions of years to learn not to bore other people with constant updates about what we’re doing,

(I didn’t consult my partner before writing this column)

and we’re throwing it all away

(which is what would have happened if I had consulted my partner)

Twitter encourages monstrous egomania, and the very fact that Fry used Twitter to announce that he was leaving Twitter shows his dependence on it.

(Unlike being an opinionated columnist, of course, Hem Hem)

He was never going to give it up. He’s addicted to it.

(And – finally – did I tell you that I am a self-qualified Doctor able to diagnose from afar)

(Hem-Hem)

Wrapping Up

I really have trouble understanding why some people just do not seem to appreciate the positive side of Twitter, although many of them seem to be general commentators inside the London media bubble.

I suspect that it could be that the main benefits of Twitter (and blogging) have made to make politics and media more permeable, and have made it possible for a far wider group of people to engage in the political debate without going through the media filter.

The point is that if you are inside the bubble and already get politicians reply to your emails in person because you work for an organisation they have heard of, then all of these seem to be unwelcome threats, rather than benefits or opportunities.

Bye-bye media bubble, I hope.

12:49
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