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Posts Tagged ‘ideas’

You Tell Us: What Are Social Media’s Limitations In Your Newsroom?

Much is made about how social media has changed newsrooms, and I’m one of those people who talks a lot about it.

But for all of that talk, there comes a point where you need to decide what action to take, if any.

Newsrooms today are bombarded with lists of best practice, how-to’s and draconian Do This Or You Will Perish blogs and articles.

Do you go with the herd, or do you hold your own and keep moving forward the best way you know how?

I’d really like to hear from some of our readers who are “on the ground” as a part of, or observing, their newsroom’s transformation and/or adoption of social media and online communities.

Not everyone is going to have an easy time of it, but there is certainly opportunity to learn from each other’s experiences.

If you have something to share,  please chime in with a comment below about the horror stories, or the tales of greatness at the news organization you work at.

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“Scroll Kit” Tool For De-Templated Design Goes Live, Adds New Features

Synchronized perfectly with the start of the annual SXSW conference in Austin, Cody Bown and Kate Ray have announced improvements to their design tool, Scroll Kit.

You may remember we wrote about Scroll Kit back in October when it was in super-beta and you could only request invites. The tool allows you to step outside the templatized world of news design, where every headline is the same size and every photo is placed in the same spot no matter how important the story or good the art. The concept of customized design tailored to each story is the nexus of print design, but isn’t transferred to web design at all. Scroll Kit lets you easily take advantage of what the web has to offer in terms of design using drag ‘n drop tools. See a live demo if you want to play around with layers, colors, fonts and the other new features.  Read more

Five New Year’s Resolutions For Newsrooms

Ah, the new year. A time for promising to do new things and reflecting on what you failed to achieve in the past year. For the ever-evolving news industry, it’s a fresh opportunity to assess what’s working and what’s not, and a reason to get others around you to try something new (not always the easiest thing to accomplish in the newsroom).

These are five resolutions, ranging from relatively simple to somewhat radical, that you can use as a source of inspiration for your own newsroom.

1. Cut back on paper usage.

People like meetings. People like for their meetings to feel productive and important. Therefore, people print handouts, packets, memos. In an era of Google Docs, project screens and smart phones, there’s really no reason to print out twenty versions of the same document, which will, no doubt, be lost in a pile on a desk or immediately end up in a recycling bin. It’s wasteful.

Part of getting a newsroom to think digitally is getting them to act digitally. A few tools you can use to accomplish this: Google Docs, Quick Notes (A Chrome app), the iPad Notes app or Notes Plus, Evernote (great for syncing across devices) Read more

The New, Convoluted Life Cycle Of A Newspaper Story

News must be really hard to follow for an everyday consumer of a newspaper website. First tweets go out, sometimes with no links to additional coverage. Then a few grafs go up on a blog, followed by additional updates, either to the top of that post or as new posts. Eventually, a print story gets started, which is posted through an entirely different workflow onto a different-looking story page. This version is usually written as an hourglass-style narrative, following typical print conventions. For the rest of the day, new updates start going to this story rather than the original blog post. Having a hard time following? Here’s a graphic to help:

As a reader, this is confusing because:

  1. I don’t know where to start or end
  2. When I jump into the story somewhere in the middle gray area, I don’t know where to go to get previous coverage or the full picture
  3. To continue following the story, I don’t know where to look
  4. When I look at all this content as a whole, I don’t know where the newest information is. Read more

Making Your News Budget Public: How And Why

You’ve probably heard the modern-day mantra touted by journalism radicals everywhere: Transparency is the new objectivity. I won’t get into a debate about whether that’s true, but I will point you to some news organizations that are putting transparent editorial strategies to the test through open news budgets (read more from 10,000 Words on open news).

The idea of open news budgets is this: You post your editorial pursuits to the web each morning and give the public a chance to weigh in with tips, suggestions, sources, alternate angles, etc. You involve your readers in the editorial process from the start, rather than hiding your content behind a wall and letting them react after the story is finished. Read more

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