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interview

‘Post-Mobile’ Is Inevitable: Why Journalists Shouldn’t Dismiss Google Glass

glassBeing cranky and snowed in on the east coast, I was ready to remain skeptical when talking to Robert Hernandez, USC Annenberg journalism professor, about his work with Google Glass and what news orgs could do with them. But his determination to explore what he calls ‘post-mobile’ tools and how journalists can use them convinced me. I (almost) want a pair, once they’re more stylish and I don’t have to talk to them, which will happen, according to Hernandez.

“When have we as an industry ever benefited by dismissing or feeling above an emerging technology?” he asks.

From the internet itself, to blogging, or micro-blogging, or mobile, you’d think we’d have learned our lesson by now. The debate shouldn’t be about when it’s going to catch on or how dorky they look or how people don’t want to talk to themselves to find information. It’s about getting in there and finding out how we might start to use the technology.

Google Glass isn’t the best iteration of itself , but the ‘post-mobile’ world is inevitable, he says, “and if its inevitable what are the features that you want?” He’s calling it post-mobile or micro-content:

I was going to call it ‘light content’ but I know haters will think of ‘fluffy’ content. The premise of Google Glass is that it doesn’t affect your life…it’s not an immersive thing, it’s about eliminating the time, those seconds, of pulling out your phone and unlocking it and searching. Is that good or bad? I’m not going there.”

He’s right. Think about when Twitter came out and we all rolled our eyes over 140 characters. Read more

How to Stop the Online Harassment of Female Journalists

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“Happy to say we live in the same state. Im looking you up, and when I find you, im going to rape you and remove your head.” That’s a tweet Slate writer Amanda Hess received from her stalker. Unfortunately, Hess’ situation is not uncommon. In fact, female journalists being harassed and threatened online has become an epidemic.

Hess recently wrote a lengthy piece on the subject for the Pacific Standard. She discovered that of all the people who reported being stalked and harassed online from 2000 to 2012, 72.5 percent were female. “No matter how hard we attempt to ignore it, this type of gendered harassment — and the sheer volume of it — has severe implications for women’s status on the Internet,” Hess argued.

How can we change this situation? Read more

Kierna Mayo, Editorial Director of Ebony.com, on How She Handles Internet Trolls

kierna-mayo_articleKierna Mayo began her formidable career in magazines, helping to create one of the most memorable pubs of the ’90s for the hip-hop generation, Honey. After working at Essence Girl and CosmoGirl, Mayo dipped her toes in the digital pool while working for Tyra Banks’ Tyra.com, and she was hooked.

Mayo is currently the editorial director of Ebony.com, which recently received a major makeover. In the “Digital Media” week of Mediabistro’s Profit From Your Passion series, Mayo talks about reinventing websites, the keys to boosting traffic and how she deals with Internet trolls:

Trolls are a drag. They, first of all, and probably most importantly, divert the healthy conversation, dialogue and constructive criticism. The potential for people to be heard gets eclipsed by trolls and that, of course, is their intention. You just kind of have to exist in the world with them, keep your content above the fray and encourage your audience not to be intimidated because the brilliant ideas and thoughts that come out in community often inform editorial decisions. But I would be remiss if I wasn’t truthful about the fact that you think about how people respond to things as you create. I try not to let that kind of negative energy or intention take us off our path. There have been personal attacks on virtually all of us on the site. It’s part of the job. The democracy that digital media offers all of us comes with some really damning qualities.

To hear more from Mayo, including how The Daily Beast influenced her redesign, read: So What Do You Do, Kierna Mayo, Editorial Director of Ebony.com.

The Magazine Turns to Kickstarter to Fund A Collection of Stories


We’ve already discussed how the media is increasingly turning to crowdfunding as a source of financing.  The Magazine, an all-digital pub focused on non-fiction reporting and essays (about a variety of geeky topics), is the latest outlet to hop on the crowdfunding bandwagon.

The editors decided to start a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for a print and eBook featuring a selection of writing from their first year. As of this writing, the campaign has earned $31,015 and they have nine days to go to reach their goal of $48,000.

10,000 Words spoke with executive editor Glenn Fleishman (via email) about his reasons for using Kickstarter: ”We had a lot of options at our disposal, including soliciting pre-orders directly over whatever period of time we chose until we reached a set amount,” Fleishman said. “Without a call to action, however, it’s hard to get people to pull the trigger unless you’re very popular and have something timely as well as compelling. We felt that crowdfunding would let us show our cards: We need to raise this much to pay everyone involved and produce a good-looking book.” Read more

What It’s Like To Start A Digital Mag On Global Women’s Issues

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Magazines are going through quite a transition these days. While print newspapers are in a downward spiral, digital magazines are thriving.

And that’s exactly why now is an opportune moment to create a digital pub. At least that’s what Daria Solovieva and Ivy Ng are hoping. The Columbia Journalism School grads recently created Valerie, a “space to feature female writers, bloggers, photographers, bring you stories of inspiring women and feature economic, social and political issues impacting lives of women across the globe.”

10,000 Words recently spoke to Solovieva (via email) about the ups and downs of creating an online-only pub. She says that she and her partner never considered that Valerie would be a print mag.

“The idea was always for an online, global platform that reflects how young professional women are increasingly consuming news and also the topics they’re actually interested in,” Solovieva explained. “None of my own peers subscribe to print women’s magazines anymore because the bulk of their content is limited to fashion and entertainment, which is also available for free online.” Read more

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