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Posts Tagged ‘ap’

Every News Story On The Internet Right Now Could Be 300 Words Shorter

AP_logoOk, so while longwinded Upworthy-style headlines are in vogue right now, so should be tighter editing. Earlier this week, Erik Wemple reported on an AP memo announcing a move to start “policing” story length. Daily bylines digest stories should be around 300-500 words and top, ‘global’ stories should never exceed 700, unless it’s necessary and still ‘tightly edited.’ I’m all about it. Some reasons managing editor Brian Carovillano wants them shorter?

1) Good stuff is drowning in a ‘sea of bloated, mid level copy.’ I know we’re all supposed to be all about ‘longform,’ but it seems like everything I read these days is at least two paragraphs (or pages, if you’re The New Yorker) too long. One day when I have a free weekend, I’m going to compile my evidence, but for now it remains a hypothesis: I think a lot of us are writing too much to seem more serious and in-depth so as not to appear too beholden to the ‘clickiness’ of the Internet. Yes, we can do serious journalism on mobile and digital-first platforms. But it can also be concise. Read more

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3 Things to Remember When You Correct a Story

ericschererWhile it may be true that when you talk about trust and journalism, we’re talking about protecting sources and being brave enough to publish things that challenge the powers that be. But it’s also just about being trustworthy as a news source. And that means correcting your mistakes. As I notice poorly worded, or not even acknowledged, corrections floating around the Internet on a daily basis, it might be time for some refreshers.

1) Make it immediate. Since most of the time the reason for the mistake may be that you were rushing through the 24-hour news cycle, you should also remember that you can correct anywhere, anytime. As soon as you notice a mistake, announce it on Twitter even before the copy editor finishes updating the story for that matter. I think being overzealous is a good thing in this case. 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.

TV Reigns In News Consumption and More Surprises in ‘Personal News Cycle’ Study

Fewer than 50 percent of the API's sample set said they used an online-only reporting service to find news. Eighty-two percent said they went straight to local TV news.

Fewer than 50 percent of the API’s sample set said they used an online-only reporting service to find news. Eighty-two percent said they went straight to local TV news.

An exciting new partnership between the American Press Institute (API) and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research called the Media Insight Project has produced a study called “The Personal News Cycle: How Americans choose to get their news”.

The Media Insight Project’s main goal is to “understand changing news audiences” through a series of polls and studies, the initiative’s leaders announced in a press release last week.

“We created the AP-NORC Center to serve the news industry by making the best social science research available to journalists and the public in order to promote a greater understanding of social trends,” AP-NORC Center Director Trevor Tompson said.

Based on a telephone survey of 1,492 adults across the nation conducted from Jan. 9 to Feb. 16, 2014, here are a few of the study’s key takeaways, published on March 17:

Consumers will find the news they want on the technology that is most convenient

According to the Media Insight Project, traditional media is still relevant for sifting through the news. Respondents used at least four devices to either discover or follow up on stories in a single week, but the tools used may surprise you. “The most frequently utilized devices include television (87 percent), laptops/computers (69 percent), radio (65 percent), and print newspapers or magazines (61 percent),” reported API. The same people said they preferred television to computers for consuming news 24 percent to 12 percent, with cell phones and tablets at 12 and four percent, respectively. ”People who own and use more devices are no more or less likely to use print publications, television, or radio to access the news,” read the study.

Read more

How Secure Are Your Social Media Accounts?

A hacked Twitter account is nothing new. Unfortunately, on a regular basis I get suspicious direct messages and tweets from friends and followers with links to who knows where. They’ve been hacked. Usually, their friends flag that and it’s quickly cleaned up.

But what happens when that hacked account has more than a half million followers? When it’s verified and belongs to one of the most venerable international news organizations? When the hacked content isn’t a questionable link but what would be the most major national security story since maybe ever?

Well, that happened yesterday when the Associated Press saw its account compromised and 71 hijacked characters about explosions at the White House sent the stock markets briefly down and got notice of everyone from the FBI to the SEC. The hacked account was quickly taken offline and suspended. But as Ryan Sholin pointed out this morning when the account was reinstated (but briefly before the offending tweet could be deleted) — more than 4,000 people had retweeted that note (and those are only the ones who used the RT button instead of quoting or adding their own commentary). Read more

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