News Wrap: Some Great Advice About Twitter You Don’t Want To Hear
career path compass
June 27, 2014


EDITOR’S NOTE: Links to selected media news from the past week.

SHORT TAKES:

* Three Al Jazeera journalists were sentenced to prison in Egypt amid charges of aiding the Muslim Brotherhood and “reporting false news.”  (Al Jazeera)

* Yahoo is building a breaking news desk. Also, its CEO was recently late to dinner.  (Capital New York, Bloomberg)

* An intern for the White House communications staff fainted while observing her first White House press briefing, prompting Benjamin Mullin of the Poynter Institute to commiserate about his embarrassing first day on the job and call for other journalists to fess up as well. (Washington Post, Poynter.org)

* EwEwEw! Oxford commas are so gross! Or are they……  Americans are split. (fivethirtyeight.com)

* Companies that claim they will scan your Twitter and Facebook profiles (for a fee) to help you get rid of potentially embarrassing content carry a risk: They could make the Internet boring. (Daily Dot)

* Related: Young journalist Sam Goldberg recently posed the question – Should she clean up the Twitter account she started in her teens as she’s on the cusp of entering the workforce? (American Journalism Review)

* Speaking of young journalists on Twitter, The Washington Post drew heat this week for running what some called an “ageist” job advertisement for a social media editor, that listed, among the requirements, the ability to explain “to those twice your age what Reddit or Snapchat or Whisper or Fark is.” (American Journalism Review)

* Voicemails are horrible; stop leaving them. (New York Times)

* Though it’s hard to say that teens think Facebook is cool, a new survey said they are using it much more than originally thought. (Wall Street Journal)

* Journalists everywhere blew their deadlines to watch the World Cup this week. And those of us who aren’t into soccer wanted to mute nearly everyone on Twitter.

WEIRD NEWS

Juice is Where It’s At: Someone stole the horribly ugly “Juice” car, given away when the Des Moines-based Gannett youth-targeted publication launched in 2005. If that isn’t weird/funny enough, listen to the song Juice used as a launch promotion.

Screenshot. Pictured: The 2005 Release Series Scion tC given away by a youth publication in Des Moines, Iowa that was apparently stolen this week.

Screenshot. Pictured: The 2005 Release Series Scion tC given away by a youth publication in Des Moines, Iowa that was apparently stolen this week.

INNOVATE

The Potential of ‘Yo.:’ Could the Yo App drive traffic to a news site? Yes, says its founder, in The Verge. And it could do so much more, with its ability to send push notifications that aren’t tied to apps. One idea from creator Or Arbel: Encourage readers to connect with a news organization through the Yo app, and the news organization can send out a “Yo” to all of its subscribers when it has breaking news. Readers can check the site when they have time.

Coding is so fun, it’s now a board game: A board game designed to teach kids the logic behind computer programming features “monkeys competing over bananas,” reports Mashable. The game was created by a 23-year-old in New York City who learned about how to make board games (and market them) from online forums.

Why does Wikipedia get to have all the glory? Let’s say you are reading USA Today and stumble upon something you’d like to know more about, like Keira Knightley, who, as the paper reported, recently wore a very pretty dress. If you want to learn more about her, a new feature on the site allows the user to click on her name and access a pop up box full of facts and figures. Mashable reports the feature is a product of Curiyo, a startup founded by the same person who created Answers.com

Newspapers are excited about wearable technology: The UK is about to get Google Glass and The Guardian is among the first businesses to start experimenting with ways to develop the device. The Drum reports that The Guardian wants Glass wearers to be able to see a stream of its latest headlines. Newspapers in the U.S. are also paying careful attention to wearable tech: According to a write-up in the Newspaper Association of America, papers are “developing and refining the types of journalism” that will work for wearables.

FROM THE COPY DESK

Great editors are like meatloaf? Reporters and columnists at The New York Times dish in a multi-part series on the myriad of qualities that make a great editor, including Op-Ed columnist Frank Bruni, who compared great editors to the notoriously yucky combination of meat, bread crumbs and eggs that some of us NEVER ate as a kid. “There is a multitude of kinds, and all get the job done, deploying different recipes for the same result, which is your nourishment,” Bruni said.

[GIF of talk show host Rachael Ray and  former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's wife Ann Romney making meatloaf courtsey of Giphy.com via gifsfln.tumblr.com]

The best advice reporters can get in the age of shrinking newsrooms: What’s a reporter to do when there are fewer editors around, asks Roy Peter Clark in Poynter? He offers an answer: “If reporters want more coaching, they should seek it out. If you sit at your desk waiting for it, you’ll be waiting for a long time.”

More great advice, but harder to hear: Get off Twitter and make your brain hurt enough to write a good headline. Why? Because a lot of social sharing happens because of a great headline, says leanmeanmarketing.com.

THE IDEA CORNER

The Internet Loves Drawings: To encourage your students/staff/friends/sources to think visually, and potentially at your expense, ask them to draw you. If you are a professor, they can submit the drawing to drawyourprofessor.com. If not, you can just post it on Facebook and bask in all of the likes you will inevitably get.

THE BIZ

From Zine to Mainstream: Vice, the edgy “zine’ that started in 1994 in Montreal is being courted by several big media companies, including Fox and Disney. “All of them are desperately scrambling to reach a generation of consumers who are more attached to their mobile phones than to traditional television,” reports The New York Times.

A word we really shouldn’t use anymore: If you are going to do something new on the Internet these days, don’t call it a blog. The New York Times, for example, says it will continue to serve up content with a “bloggy” tone, but will be getting rid of lots of its “standard reverse-chronological blogs,” reports Poynter.

 [GIF of child reality TV star Honey Boo Boo (Alana Thompson) courtesy of Giphy.com via hiolivejuicee.tumblr.com]

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