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Posts Tagged ‘journalism’

Should We Be Nicer to PR People?

newsweek_premailsThis week, Newsweek published the diary of a journalist who read and replied to every PR email that came through his inbox for a week.  I clicked on that headline like the sucker I am, though I am usually against* “I Did X For A Week” pieces that seem to be coming more and more popular. From talking to strangers to doing your kids homework, they usually scroll a few digital pages (click! click!), are formatted journal-style to make them easy to read, and often include just the right amount of snark and existential anxiety that make them easy to finish, comment on, and share. They’re digital publishing stunts.

But, anyway, could you imagine replying to every PR email you received?

I’m just a lowly blogger. I don’t know that it would actually set me two or three hours behind each day to answer all the emails and invites I get. Maybe half of an hour. But I still get a lot of them, and usually ones that make no sense to me. Why is it that so many PR emails are so wrong?

Assumption 1) Because PR is actually a skill that too many people think they have. And too many startups or party planners or grad students with a cool Kickstarter idea are just hijacking friends or broke college grads to do it. Sometimes even when a pitch is just remotely related to something I write about, if it’s well done, I’ll consider it for a minute. Good PR is sort of like porn, hard to define, but you know it when you see it.

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Back to School Links: 3 Pieces New (and Old) Journos Should Wrap Their Heads Around

adrevenueIt’s back to school season, which means there will be a lot of journalism students sitting around debating how to best make money doing it. We just can’t stop wondering or examining how it’s all changed. The discussion isn’t just happening in ivory towers, either. In the past week, current journos and editors at large have been pondering it as well:.

  • David Plotz took to to his Twitter feed to tweet out all of the options. Then, he did the right thing and just compiled them into this post on Slate.  What’s interesting is how 2014 compares to 1998. He could only think of five good ways to raise money — banner ads, being the biggest earner. Now? With membership models like Slate’s Plus, podcasts and conferences, things are just more complicated, but hardly as bleak. 

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Journo-Inspired Beach Reads: What Are You Reading?

Lthe last magazineong weekends call for good reads. This summer I’ve already devoured two journo-inspired novels: Sarah Cahalan’s Brain on Fire and Michael Hastings’ The Last Magazine. 

You might have already read Brain on Fire, so forgive me for coming late to the party. It was on the NYT’s Bestseller List  in 2012 and it was just announced that Dakota Fanning and Charlize Theron will be starring in the film adaptation. It’s a compelling memoir chronicling Cahalan’s “month of madness,” while working as a reporter for the New York Post. While the book focuses on mental illness, there’s also little love letters to journalism and what’s its like to be a young reporter scattered throughout. Good prose and an honest voice.

Then, there’s the scathing look at the publishing industry and the state of mainstream journalism — fictionalized, of course, in Hastings’ posthumous novel The Last Magazine. It’s sort of Bonfire of the Vanities, but for journalists. It’s literary merits may be questionable, but the navel gazing and trying to find the real life inspiration for the characters makes it a perfect summer indulgence.

What are you reading? Any good non-fiction tips? Journo-inspired novels and memoirs? Keep us in the loop @10,000Words.

Anthony Shadid Award Recognizes Ethical Journalism

Anthony Shadid, courtesy University of Wisconsin

Anthony Shadid, courtesy University of Wisconsin

New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid died in 2012 from a severe allergic reaction while crossing the Syrian border on assignment for the paper.

A highly accomplished journalist, Shadid had already won two Pulitzer Prizes for his courageous and insightful foreign correspondence.

As a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Shadid sat on the school’s center for journalism ethics advisory board and was a strong supporter of efforts to promote public interest journalism and to stimulate discussion about journalism ethics.

In recognition of Shadid’s contributions to the pursuit of ethics in journalism, the school’s center for journalism ethics recently announced a call for nominations for a new, national award: Read more

Is Journalism’s Loss, PR’s Gain?

It’s no secret that journalism jobs have been in decline for several years now, due to the combined effects of shrinking ad budgets, fading print publications and the advent of digital news.

25 on deadlineA recent Yahoo! Education story went one step further by naming reporter or correspondent jobs as “nearly extinct,” while PR specialist jobs continue to grow across nearly all industries.

Sadly, government statistics bear this out. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that journalism jobs have dropped by 25 percent since 2000. And, from 2010 to 2020, the BLS expects reporter or correspondent jobs to drop by yet another six percent. By contrast, in the last decade PR jobs have jumped by nearly 63 percent, and are expected to rise another 21 percent in the coming 10 years. Read more

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