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Posts Tagged ‘breaking news reporting’

Journalist-Made Liveblog Pro Connects Real-Time Blogging and Twitter

Screen Shot 2014-01-06 at 9.26.36 PMWe talk often about reporting news in real time on this blog. Live-tweeting, live-blogging, live-streaming — the whole shebang. We’ve talked about ScribbleLive and CoverItLive as options for breaking things quickly via a live blog to your readers. But don’t forget about Liveblog Pro.

The UK-based company launched in beta about a year ago, but I didn’t hear about it until Digital First Media’s Digital Transformation Editor Steve Buttry mentioned it in passing during a post about the pros and cons of live-tweeting versus live-blogging Monday, the topic of which several industry professionals passionately discussed via Twitter recently (spoiler alert: Buttry says they’re both vital; neither is superior).

Anyway, using the Liveblog Pro software doesn’t require any knowledge of code and was created specifically for journalists. In a nutshell, Liveblog Pro ”allows publishers to cover a wide range of content — from events, to developing news stories, to Q&A sessions.” It was even used by Columbia Journalism Review on election night in 2012.

Now, for the part you really care about: what does it offer, and what does it cost?

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BBG Launches Mobile First, Live-Reporting Platform

relay1Say what you will about the government, but it might have just changed how we think of breaking news platforms. Go figure.

The Office of Digital and Design Innovation at the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) has released Relay, a mobile first platform for real-time reporting.

It’s interesting from both the backend and the consumer’s experience. In terms of the CMS, it’s not hard to train reporters how to use it, according to Randy Abramson, Director of Audio and Video Projects at the BBG. Reporters in the field submit content via email, by including the content type (text, video, audio) and the designated hashtag for a story in the subject line. Says Abramson, “then you just include your message in the email and it’s filtered through the system.”

Editors can also assign multiple permissions and stories. Some content, like a video interview, can be published immediately. Other breaking news content will be sent to a queue to be reviewed, verified, and fact checked. Says Abramson:

Fact checking is a definite concern for the BBG and our services….At the same time, there are a lot of types of stories that don’t have to go through the same type of fact checking as a breaking news story. If you’re covering SXSW or something, you can  publish very quickly.relay-mandela-death-pakistan2

For the news consumer, it’s easy to follow breaking, real-time reporting. Each story has a unique URL, so you don’t have to already be following Voice of America, for example, or download an app. Instead of searching through various social media feeds for info, it’s all collected on the Relay site.

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Twitter Direct Message Change Could Make News Tips On Twitter Easier

By this point in time, every reporter has probably tried to reach out to some potential source via Twitter. It’s awkward, and often if the subject is of interest to you they’re probably inundated with other requests.

A quick search today of the phrase “reporter” & “reach” turned up examples of how most of us go about it today:
Finding sources on Twitter is awkward

See, awkward.

Not to mention exposed. What if you want to reach someone without tipping off your competition? What if you don’t want to put all your contact information out there day in and day out? What if you’re trying to reach a bunch of people — you look like a spam bot with tweet after tweet after tweet of the same thing. Plus, it gives off the “he’s just not that into me vibe” to potential sources.

In an ideal world, you’d be able to see their email address or other contact information and take the convo off Twitter where it belongs. That’s not happening. But Twitter recently made a subtle change to direct messages that over time should be good for journalists. You can direct message people who aren’t following you back.
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ifussss: New Video Sharing App and Newsroom for Journos

If you see something, share something. That’s the motto and logic behind a new video sharing app called ifussss. Say it with me now: EYE- FUSS. 

While Twitter and Facebook already have us all gathering images and looping videos, ifuss is targeted to news organizations. Co-founder Edward Brooks explains:

Right now, it’s a ton of effort. Users are looking for good content, they’re interested in things happening in their area. If you know a story’s already broke, you can go to Facebook or YouTube, but even if you find the content, you don’t know if you can use it, if it’s been used before — the whole process in the middle is difficult. 

The concept is the same as, say, Instagram. You see traffic on a bridge, for example. You shoot and upload it to the ifussss network. It’s automatically geo, time, and hash tagged. News editors can search and monitor the ifussss newsroom platform and, this is where it gets interesting, buy the content. 

They still haven’t worked out the kinks on pricing, but it’s going to be a “very low cost” price, says Brooks. ifussss collects that revenue and pays a percentage to the citizen journalists who took the video in the first place. 

Brooks mentions that a contact of his in a local New York City newsroom says they had five or six people combing through user-generated video after Hurricane Sandy. 

It would make that process much easier. We’re not asking you to change that behavior, but now the archive is there, it’s verified content, and ready to use. 

There’s been much discussion around Twitter’s Vine and Instagram video, but both of the behometh’s continue to tell us that they aren’t a media company. ifussss could fill in that gap. The big question is: will newsrooms pay for user generated video content? Brooks thinks they should. 

“It’s about video with value,” he says. “It’s not just about breaking news. I saw a Lisa Liu filming in Washington Sqaure Park the other day… It’s of no value right now, but when that movie comes out or wins awards, the footage could be of value later. It’s in the archives, tagged, and ready to be used.”
The app is set to release in the store in late August, but they are offering limited pre-release access to the app if you sign up now. I’m curious to know what you all think of the concept, so let me know in the comments or on Twitter.

 

The Problem With the Old Media and New Media Debate

I am intrigued by the meta story surrounding the University of Toledo sexual harassment and resignation scandal. It’s not the story of leaked text messages that gets me, as gross and tiring as it is. Instead, it’s the old media versus new media argument that has resurfaced because of it. Which is just as tiring.

Both Deadspin and the Toledo Blade were working on breaking a story. On Tuesday, Deadspin posted it at 2:45 a.m., while the toledoblade.com posted at 7:13 a.m. That’s not exactly problematic; but the responses of both organizations was. Dave Murray, managing editor of the Blade, called out Deadspin on Twitter:

The difference between the coverage of this story by The Blade and Deadspin is that [Blade reporter Ryan] Autullo is a professional journalist who has named sources and you can believe what he reports.

Can’t we all just get along? Jim Romenesko’s blog has some insight about why print sport’s journalists may not like sites like Deadspin that, as he says, take sport’s journalism off the field and into the locker room. As we’ve found out, that’s where you break some big stories. It was Deadspin, after all, who shocked the media by breaking the Manti Te’o story. This shouldn’t become a shouting match were new and old media try to prove who is more reliable, who has more worthy sources, or who’s doing it right.

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