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2014 Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference to Highlight Science, Tech Writing

maybornI’m a big believer in journalism conferences. Attending one forces you to focus on your craft for a few days and is an incredible opportunity to talk to people who are smarter than you and can help you in your career (I guess that’s what they call networking, but I just hate that word).

That said, the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference is one of the best, in my opinion. I love technology and gadgets and doodads just as much as the next millennial, but it’s nice sometimes to forget about apps, tablets and wearables for a second and hone in on the extremely basic yet oh-so-difficult craft of writing. Not to mention, it’s much less stressful than SXSW, which will matter to you if you’re not a crowds person.

Anyway, the Mayborn, sponsored by the Frank W. and Sue Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. The conference’s theme this year is “Narratives on the cutting edge:  writing about science, technology, medicine and innovation,” and the program boasts an impressive list of accomplished writers.

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Knight Center Announces Free Online Investigative Journalism Class

knight invest. journo post picIf you’ve ever wanted to learn the nuts and bolts of investigative reporting, here’s your chance, courtesy of the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas.

A five-week, massive open online course (MOOC) on “Investigative Journalism for the Digital Age,” will begin on May 12 and end on June 14, 2014. Read more

Do We Need Open Interviews?

redcurtainI realize that I may have harped a bit on Vox.com recently, but that’s because it’s new and doing work worth noticing. This week, via a tweet from Jay Rosen, I noticed that they had a toggle feature on an article. You can read the story and then toggle over to see where the pull quotes came from.

It’s a cool feature and one that I think many journo professors and media navel gazers think is necessary. We used to edit because we were limited to column inches. You can fit everything and anything on your website — so why not go for full disclosure? I get it. Open interviews are good for transparency, add value and all of that.

But is everything really fit to print? Read more

AP To Spell Out State Names, Reporters Complain on Twitter

ap tweetThe AP announced that it will start to spell out state’s names in stories. That’s annoying, if only because I’ve finally got my abbreviations down.

Two things:

1) I get that it’s about clarity, but what about character limits? Does anyone prefer spelling state names out? If you read the full memo, it seems more confusing than not.

2) Since my gut reaction is “why bother? I’m thinking the AP is out of date. Buzzfeed says to lowercase ‘internet,’ and the AP says to capitalize it. In an increasingly mobile and digital first world, why don’t we make things easy and more conversational?

I’m not the only one who’s unimpressed, either. Share your AP woes with us in the comments or tweet them to us @10,000Words.

Miami Herald Wins April Sidney Award For Project On Abused FL Kids

 

photo via cpexecutive.com

photo via cpexecutive.com

Journalists Carol Marbin Miller and Audra D.S. Burch of the Miami Herald won the April Sidney Award for “Innocents Lost“, an investigative multi-media package that spotlighted more than 400 Florida children who died due to abuse or neglect even after the state’s child protection authorities confirmed mistreatment at home yet failed to act.

Started in 2009, the Sidney Award is given monthly to honor outstanding socially-conscious, investigative journalism that encourages social and economic justice. Read more

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