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The Top 10 most popular posts of the year

It’s been quite a year for 10,000 Words. More than 100 posts and almost a million page views later, there has been an overwhelming response to the content featured on this site. Here are the most popular posts of 2009 and the stories behind them.

1. 10 News photos that took retouching too far

One of the most controversial posts to ever appear on this site (behind last year’s 7 Fonts that should Die), this examination of egregious photo editing was inspired by the controversy over the work of photographer Klavs Bo Christensen. The digitally altered photos were not the first news photos to receive a heavy dose of retouching, as evident in the listed examples.

2. 7 Essential multimedia tools and their free alternatives

October’s post on free multimedia tools and software shot to the top of the list of most-viewed posts thanks to some pretty stellar StumbleUpon traffic. The list is really a collection of technologies that have been featured on 10,000 Words before, just aggregated in one list.

3. The top 7 mistakes new Twitter users make

This cautionary post was written when many people were just starting to use Twitter and making a few rookie mistakes in their profile. While there are some who still commit the listed errors, on further consideration Twitter can be used however one wants so there really is no such thing as a “mistake.”

4. 10 Ugly truths about modern journalism

Sometimes I write posts that rile people up. I never do it intentionally, I just don’t mind saying some of the things that other people are thinking but not saying aloud. The post sparked a heated discussion in both the comments and in social media about the structure and value system of journalists and the journalism industry

5. Journalism Grads: 30 Things You Should Do This Summer

I was reading one of those “How to prepare for your first semester of college” guides when I realized there are a lot of things journalism students could be doing over the summer break that would prepare them for their first journalism job or internship. Many students and many more working journalists used the list to set goals to improve their work and I used it as a personal reference for areas where I could improve. (For the record I have two items on list left to complete).

6. The 99 Greatest blogs you aren’t reading

In a conversation with Professor Michelle Ferrier and her classes at Elon University, I was asked a question that comes up a lot: “What’s in your RSS reader?” As you can tell from this post, the answer is a wide range of blogs focused on everything from technology to graphic design, all of which are key components of modern journalism.

7. 10 Inspirational New York Times multimedia and interactive features

It’s no secret that the New York Times is at the forefront of digital journalism and, judging by the response to this post, many others agree. This post received a second boost of traffic during the 2009 ONA conference after it was circulated around Twitter during one of the sessions. The post is a well-deserved kudos to a hard-working team.

8. 20 Photojournalists’ fantastic portfolios

This post was inspired by the fantastic work produced by photographers following 10,000 Words on Twitter. Any time someone follows @10000Words, I check out the site listed in their bio and if it’s interesting or captivating in any way, I bookmark it and save it for later. This post was the result of many bookmarks of photojournalist’s portfolios and highlights a diverse group of talented photographers.

9. Move over Soundslides: 4 Free online slideshow creators

There are some posts where after I write them, I’m not so happy about what I’ve written. In light of the hyperbolic title, none of the featured tools were at the time a match for Soundslides and I felt the post was a little misleading. Fast forward a couple of months and PhotoPeach, one of the sites featured on the list, introduced some dramatic improvements that actually made it a viable replacement for Soundslides and the post was saved.

10. 20 must-have gifts for journalists: 2009 Edition

Last week’s post on quirky and fun holiday gifts for journalists quickly edged out the rest of the posts to make it the tenth spot. While Care Bear body armor and a desk for your car’s steering wheel may not be “must-have” gifts, they certainly are enough to put a smile on your favorite journo’s face.

Thanks so much for reading 10,000 Words and being a part of this experience. Is your favorite post from this year not on the list? Share it in the comments!

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