Friday, 19 December 2014

What I Learned At Storyful: Three Trainees on Their Experience | Storyful Blog

Six months of forensically monitoring, mining, swarming, verifying, fact-checking and sourcing comes to an end this week for the latest cohort of Storyful trainees. Since July, they've been immersed in all our products, processes, tools and best practices while learning our unique brand of storytelling. 

Our Product and Editorial teams take pride in bringing trainees behind the covers of Storyful, sharing their war stories, tips and tricks in a process which is focussed on exchanging information, skills and knowledge.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Police misuse of Ripa powers to spy on journalists is systemic, MPs told | Media | The Guardian

The National Union of Journalists has told parliament that police misuse of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act to snoop on journalists and their sources is "systemic and institutionalised" and is doing "irreparable damage" to the industry.

Michelle Stanistreet, the NUJ's general secretary, told the home affairs select committee that police were routinely bypassing the need for judicial scrutiny to discover journalistic sources by using Ripa to go through phone records and other data.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Icelandic journalists face jail for making a mistake | Media | The Guardian

Lawyers acting for an Icelandic interior ministry official are asking for two journalists to be jailed because they mistakenly named her as a target in a police investigation.

In June, the journalists - Jón Bjarki Magnússon and Jóhann Páll Jóhannsson -identified Þórey Vilhjálmsdóttir, a political assistant to Iceland's interior minister, as a government leaker known as "employee B". They were wrong.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Police misuse of Ripa powers to spy on journalists is systemic, MPs told | Media | The Guardian

The National Union of Journalists has told parliament that police misuse of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act to snoop on journalists and their sources is "systemic and institutionalised" and is doing "irreparable damage" to the industry.

Michelle Stanistreet, the NUJ's general secretary, told the home affairs select committee that police were routinely bypassing the need for judicial scrutiny to discover journalistic sources by using Ripa to go through phone records and other data.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Jeremy Bowen: Even daring reporters may deem Isis threat too risky | Media | The Guardian

Jeremy Bowen, one of the BBC's most experienced foreign correspondents, has said the threat from Islamic State(Isis) has made "even the most enterprising and daring reporters" think hard about whether working in Syria is worth the risk.

Bowen, the BBC's Middle East editor, described the conflict in Syria as "extraordinarily difficult and at times dangerous" for journalists.

Monday, 15 September 2014

A day in the life of a wannabe foreign correspondent | Wannabe Hacks

Travelling to Ethiopia to investigate a story was a huge risk and one I will certainly take again.

The dream of being a travelling journalist is one that would appeal to most wannabe hacks, for me; it really was just that, a dream. The idea of covering exciting stories and working in hostile environments was one that I never thought could happen. In April of this year that dream turned into a reality.

Monday, 8 September 2014

TV News Storytellers | Editor’s Notebook | How Would You Reinvent TV News?

If you are one of those people that rarely read a business trend article, I suggest you change your habits; like right now would be a good time.  Climb out of the hole and dust yourself off.  The world is changing, and unless you are scheduled for retirement, it affects you.

Life in the newsroom: expectation vs. reality - Muck Rack

I was 13 when I decided I would become a journalist.

Why? I wanted to make an impact, to inspire the masses. I wanted to change the world.

Was I naïve? Maybe. But even on the first day of J-School, I remember chills running down my spine as my professor stood before 400 would-be journalists commissioning us to go into the world and make a difference. We were inspired. We had dreams of how it would be. Some turned out to be true, others still might – and some certainly won't. Adjusting to the reality of working in such a dynamic, changing field takes time. But with so much to love, making the shift is well worth the effort.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Journalism and the internet: Is it the best of times? No -- but it's not the worst of times either

Journalism and the internet: Is it the best of times? No -- but it's not the worst of times either

Having just written what I consider a defense of the internet's effect on journalism and the media industry, I didn't expect to have to do it again so soon. But just after Andrew Leonard's short-sighted piece in Salon about how the internet has crippled journalism, David Sessions wrote on the same topic in Patrol magazine, and arguably did an even worse job of describing the current state of journalism, calling it a morass of "cynical, unnecessary, mind-numbing, time-wasting content."

It's not just the over-riding pessimism of both of these pieces that bothers me. It's the failure to appreciate that the complaints they have are the same ones that have been made about journalism for decades — combined with the unrestrained longing for some mythical golden age of journalism.

Monday, 18 August 2014

John A. MacArthur says the internet makes bad journalism. He has a point. - The Week -

John R. MacArthur, publisher of Harper's,thinks that online journalism is, well, not real journalism. In a profile in The New York Times, he struck all the wrong fussy notes, blaming the enthusiasm for the Web within his own organization on "a small mob of what I can't help but refer to as 'young people.'"

Saturday, 2 August 2014

BBC Academy - Journalism - How to become a BBC journalist

We each give different replies to the question of how to become a BBC journalist based on our own experiences, and of course there is no definitive answer. But as an organisation the BBC can offer some basic guidance and advice.

The good news is that opportunities arise regularly because the BBC employs several thousand journalists and people are always arriving, changing jobs or leaving.

Friday, 1 August 2014

The human cost of news

The human cost of news.

For many journalists, the price of a story can be their freedom, or even their lives.

They are often the victims of authoritarian governments bent on silencing any opposition, or collateral damage in some of the globe's deadliest conflicts.

Using data collected by the Committee to Protect Journalists and Journalists Without Borders, News Online looks at some of the most dangerous places to be a journalist.

Monday, 21 July 2014

news:rewired » Blog Archive » How journalists can get the best from Reddit

Reddit is a self-gatekeeping community known for the original content posted by its user-base, as well as links to other content on the web, which can be either up or down-voted by other users.

For new users, the platform – which comes with its own quirks and terminology – can initially appear daunting.

However, with a bit of practice, it becomes easy to navigate your way through the vast amount of content posted to the site each day.

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Newspryng: crowdfunding for independent journalism | Media news

A new platform aiming to foster independent journalism and collaborative writing launched last week, with an in-built donation system to support journalists' work.

Newspryng is a new experiment incrowdfunding for journalism, helping freelancers publish their work and get paid for it.

"I wanted to explore whether we could replicate this model with a platform which anyone could contribute to," Matthew Chapman, the editorial lead behind Newspryng, told

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

'Yes journalists have broken the law, and we should be pleased and proud that they did' | Press Gazette

Andy Coulson's jail sentence gave the tabloid-bashing lobby a welcome opportunity to pose on the high ground once more, after the humiliation of seeing only one defendant convicted at the end of their £100m (according to The Guardian) hacking trial (plus the five who pleaded guilty).

Keir Starmer, the former Director of Public Prosecutions behind the hacking case, smugly declared that the trials had been worth it because they had dispelled the "feeling that journalists were above the law".

Never mind the Crown's abject failure to prove that former Sun and News of the World  editor Rebekah Brooks and others were involved in any "criminal conspiracy". The message is that tabloid journalism has now been found guilty, and needs to be punished and restrained.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Revival of Local Journalism conference: 13 themes which matter for the future | David Higgerson

I spent yesterday at the Revival of Local  Journalism conference held by the BBC and the Society of Editors at MediaCity in Salford.

It brought together people from all forms of local media, and in that sense was rather unique. There were a lot of interesting views point across, and a few odd ones.

I'll blog more on the themes which really struck a chord with me,  but here are 13 interesting points which got on to my notepad during the day:

Saturday, 5 July 2014

BBC College of Journalism shares free training resources to the world

The BBC College of Journalism last week opened up their training website for free to a global audience. On it are a wealth of resources originally created for an internal BBC audience by some of its most experienced journalists. The college say the opening up of the site is a trial that will last at least 12 months.

There are videos and podcasts on basic three point lighting, safety with lights, how a TV news package is produced, self shooting video journalism, iPhone journalism, audio and many more.

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Are journalists who refuse to retire from top jobs stifling the ambitions of the young (and middle aged)? | Press Gazette

Are there too many people aged 65 and over who occupy senior jobs in journalism? I think the answer to that question is 'yes', and as a reporter in my early 40s still trying to make some headway in the business I want to explain why. 

Granted, there is no formal retirement age in Britain anymore, and probably never has been one in the trade of journalism anyway. Plus, experience counts for a lot, so it is undoubtedly positive in some ways that those well over the half way mark of life are able to thrive as hacks in print and in broadcasting.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Former Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan named most influential UK journalist on social media - full top 50 list | Press Gazette

Piers Morgan has been named the most influential UK journalist on social media by Press Gazette.

He took top prize in the second of Press Gazette's Social Media Journalism Awards. In April, hacking trial tweeter Peter Jukes was named top reporter on twitter and social media.

Last night Press Gazette named the top 50 most influential journalists on social media, sponsored by ("the world's leading all-in-one brand newsroom and multimedia PR platform").

The prize was awarded after taking into consideration the views of an expert panel of judges, voting forms filled out by more than 200 Press Gazette readers and also looking at the number of followers journalists have on Twitter.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Vice News tells personal stories of journalists through illustrated series | Media news

The private stories of international journalists rarely make the cut in conventional news. ButCorrespondent Confidential, an illustrated documentary series from Vice News, makes these unique reporting experiences the focus of its episodes.

Series producer Carrie Ching said she knows first hand from working with investigative journalists that some of the best stories do not go into the final piece. One of the goals of the project was to "expand the way that we tell stories in journalism by allowing the reporter to be part of the story".

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

New Sources of Funding for Freelance Journalists | Rory Peck Trust

Finding funding for your latest project can be difficult and time-consuming. We created theSource of Funding pages to help under-resourced freelancers discover the variety of grants available, and to offer advice on how to apply for them.

We've had a great response from freelancers so far, and it's consistently one of the most popular resources on our site. There's a large number of grants availabe for freelancers. Our aim is to compile the most relevant ones and categorise them into region-specific or international sections.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Egypt finds Al Jazeera journalists guilty - Al Jazeera English

Two Al Jazeera English journalists have been sentenced to seven years in jail and one to 10 years by an Egyptian court on charges including aiding the Muslim Brotherhood and reporting false news.

The guilty verdicts were delivered by a judge on Monday against Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed.

Greste and Fahmy were sentenced to seven years in jail, while Baher Mohamed was sentenced to an additional three years for possession of ammunition. Mohamed was in posession of a spent bullet he had found on the ground during a protest.

Are Sky and BBC leaving the field open to Twitter competitors? | Online Journalism Blog

At first glance, Sky's decision that its journalists should not retweet information that has "not been through the Sky News editorial process" and the BBC's policy toprioritise filing "written copy into our newsroom as quickly as possible" seem logical.

For Sky it is about maintaining editorial control over all content produced by its staff. For the BBC, it seems to be about making sure that the newsroom, and by extension the wider organisation, takes priority over the individual.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Why would anyone want to be a journalist? : June 2014 : Contributoria - community funded, collaborative journalism

For someone who, by his own admission, has 'lost everything', photojournalist Giles Duley looks surprisingly chipper when we meet in a smart South African hotel for breakfast.

The previous day he'd been treated as something of a media darling, with applause and genuine whoops from the participants greeting him as he took to the stage of the International Press Institute World Congress to share his story.

But now he was preparing to fly back to London - something that's not as easy as it sounds for a man with no legs and one arm...

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Latest Stories | Columbia Journalism Review

A hashtag made headlines again this week. #YesAllWomen was created in the wake of the Isla Vista shootings as a way for women to share their experiences of being threatened with male violence, particularly when they refused sexual advances. The hashtag has stayed on the list of US trending topics for several days--and led to dozens of second-day news stories and opinion pieces.

Poynter. » Why do journalists remember nasty editors fondly?

Dean Baquet said it was "nuts" to elegize "'the city editor who changed my life because he was really nasty to me for six months and it made me a better person.'" I noted earlier today that John Robinson had recently tweeted some wisdom about the peculiar devotion some journalists have for tough editors, but I was curious what Jill Geisler, who directs Poynter's management and leadership training programs, thought about J. Jonah Jameson types.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Sam Blackledge: John Humphrys may be tired of journalism, but the rest of us are still going strong | Plymouth Herald

JOHN Humphrys, esteemed veteran of BBC Radio 4's Today programme and scourge of evasive politicians, was recently asked what advice he would give to aspiring journalists.

"Don't do it!" he replied. "I am deeply pessimistic for the future of serious print journalism and I tell my own children and grandchildren to train for a profession where they're more likely to get a decent job with some hope of security."

Well, that's it then. We might as well all pack up our notepads and head off to the Job Centre. When one of the leading journos of his generation feels all hope is lost, what chance do the rest of us have?

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Slightly More Than 100 Fantastic Pieces of Journalism

Slightly More Than 100 Fantastic Pieces of Journalism

Each year, I keep a running list of exceptional nonfiction for The Best ofJournalism, a weekly email newsletter I publish. The result is my annual Best Of Journalism Awards. I couldn't read every worthy piece published last year and haven't included any paywalled articles or many of the numerous pieces from The Atlantic that I enjoyed*. But everything that follows is worthy of wider attention.

Monday, 19 May 2014

How to: have a digital 'edge' as a new journalist | How to succeed in journalism

How to: have a digital 'edge' as a new journalist | How to succeed in journalism

When it comes to getting your first job in journalism, there are a number of qualities all potential employers will be looking for.

You need to be able to write with accuracy and clarity, for example, and at times at speed (without – importantly – losing either of the first two staples of good reporting). It is also generally important to be well-versed in media law. Shorthand? Well, we will come to that later.

But assuming you possess all the important underlying abilities, having some digital sensibilities on top could help to set you out from the crowd, and where you are applying for an online or otherwise-digital position in particular, having key digital skills and tools under your belt could be vital.

Monday, 12 May 2014

Staying positive while looking for a job in journalism | Wannabe Hacks

I've been applying for journalism jobs since April and to be totally honest, I never thought I'd be in this position. With all the 'necessary' qualifications (BA, MA, NCTJ) and a decent amount of experience under my belt, I had always hoped that I'd be one of the lucky ones who landed a job pretty quickly. Needless to say, still being unemployed after nine months has not contributed positively to my confidence or self-esteem.

Friday, 9 May 2014

The perks of being a journalist | Wannabe Hacks

Too many people are put off the idea of becoming a journalist. Many talented writers, opinionists, and potential reporters simply don't want to be associated with the negative reputation that surrounds the press, following recent damaging events such as the Leveson Inquiry, and subsequent hacking trial.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Notes from the International Journalism Festival | The Buttry Diary

My notes from the International Journalism Festival would have worked better as tweets, both for immediacy and because they were a bit disjointed.

Wifi at the conference was spotty and I was able to livetweet only for Margaret Sullivan's keynote address on Saturday.

In addition, more than once, I've joined a session early or ducked out late, either because of appointments to meet fellow panelists or other friends or because I wanted to see overlapping panels. So in several cases, my notes cover only parts of sessions (the best parts, I hope). But I enjoyed each session, so I'll share my disjointed notes here, starting with some tweets from the Sullivan keynote:

Friday, 2 May 2014

5 lessons in start-up journalism from De Correspondent

5 lessons in start-up journalism from De Correspondent

Last April, Rob Wijnberg and Ernst-Jan Pfauth raised $1.7 million in crowdfunding for De Correspondent, a new, online-only publication

The idea was to go from 'the news' to 'the new'," said Wijnberg, De Correspondent's editor-in-chief, who was previously editor-in-chief of

He and Pfauth, publisher of De Correspondent and former online editor of, said they had tried to change the direction of their previous publication and failed. Instead, they took the ideas they had tried to implement for their own project.

"I thought the conversations I was having with the people writing articles were more interesting than the articles they were writing," said Wijnberg, and resolved to create a new publication based around each journalist – or correspondent – the stories they can tell and the conversations they can create.

A year after securing a reported world-record in crowdfunding for journalism, Pfauth and Wijnberg shared the lessons learned from their experiences so far at the International Journalism Festival in Perugia.

Journalists Covering Protests Face Growing Violence

Journalists Covering Protests Face Growing Violence

Journalists' ability to cover breaking news is under threat in a number of key countries, ranging from Brazil's more open media landscape to the contested spaces of Egypt, Turkey, and Ukraine, and Venezuela's repressive environment. Those who attempt to report on protest movements in particular risk physical harassment, detention, and even reprisal attacks designed to prevent them from documenting these important stories.

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

10 Misconceptions About Being A Journalist

10 Misconceptions About Being A Journalist.

It's easy being a journalist, right? We get paid to eat out every night, write sex columns and expose huge corruption scandals in government on a daily basis. All in a day's work. Wrong. Here are ten common misconceptions the rest of the world has about being a journalist…

Thursday, 17 April 2014

5 Ethical Conundrums For Journalists In the Digital Age

5 Ethical Conundrums For Journalists In the Digital Age.

In the world of crowdsourcing and citizen blogging, many newsroom codes of ethics seem about as antiquated as fedoras. Some journalists are prohibited from voting, donating to political campaigns, or even volunteering — rules that stand in stark contrast to the first-person, subjective, anecdotal writing that permeates the web. But transitioning to a digital medium not only complicates existing ethical concerns, it also raises new ethical questions.

One life in investigative journalism

One life in investigative journalism.

One night, a few summers ago, friends of mine in York were disturbed by a loud banging on their door. There stood a Kurdish family — men, women and children — distraught. A young relative of theirs in Cumbria, where I live, had been detained by the immigration authorities. Her two-year-old son was left parentless for four days. My friends found them a lawyer — on the 31st phone call, and prompted letters appealing to the Home Office. I created a media campaign. After 26 days locked up at Yarl's Wood detention centre, the family was released and, eventually, allowed to remain here. There had been no reason to detain them.

Monday, 7 April 2014

We need to talk: 26 awkward questions to ask news organizations about the move to digital » Nieman Journalism Lab

Here are 25 awkward questions (and one counter-question) that I wish media reporters/critics would routinely ask of editors and mainstream news organizations, each year. These might be uncomfortable, if truthfully and publicly answered, but even if you "no comment" your way out of that query, the questions might actually help spur newsroom leadership to focus on what really matters. In no particular order of importance, here is a starter kit of questions:

Thursday, 3 April 2014

A Lot of Top Journalists Don't Look at Traffic Numbers. Here's Why.

The Verge is one of the biggest and most influential technology news sites in the world, with 8.6 million monthly unique visitors and a staff of top-notch tech reporters. These are some internet-savvy editors and writers who probably know as much if not more about how to build an audience online than anyone in the business.

Yet the editors at The Verge have a policy that seems a little bit odd and anachronistic: They don't let writers see how much traffic their stories generate. Ever.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Newsrooms freeze out freelancers moonlighting for brands

Newsrooms freeze out freelancers moonlighting for brands.

For the freelance journalist, the siren call of "brand journalism" is tough to resist. It's a growth industry, and one that pays pretty well at a time when the $2-a-word magazine piece is hard to find.

But such brand work carries a cost: Many newsrooms won't permit writers on the editorial payroll to write sponsored content for their sales counterparts, and vice versa. Gawker and The Wall Street Journal, for instance, won't permit writers on the editorial payroll to write sponsored content. Condé Nast's Wired draws a clearer line in the sand in using freelancers for its Amplifi native ad division. Freelancers can't have contributed to the magazine in the past year and a half, vp, publisher Howard Mittman said.

Journalist Criticizes Rise of Sponsored Content in Media

Journalist Criticizes Rise of Sponsored Content in Media.

Speaking before a crowded room in Harvard Law School's Austin Hall, online journalist Andrew Sullivan discussed how the rise of sponsored content in journalism has begun to erode the foundation of the Fourth Estate.

While the talk was titled "How Advertising Defeated Journalism," Sullivan focused his criticism on sponsored content, which he defined as a piece in a magazine or newspaper that "looks almost identical to every other article in the magazine, but in fact is written by a copy-writer, hired by a corporation." Sponsored content, he argued, endangers "the entire enterprise of writing."

Former editor to sub-editors - you are no longer required on board

Former editor to sub-editors - you are no longer required on board.

Over the years, I have taken a lot of flak for suggesting that the days of newspaper sub-editors are numbered (here in 2008, and here and here in 2009).

Now Neil Fowler, who edited four regional titles, has discovered just how unpopular it is to write off subs. In an article for the magazine InPublishing, he argues that "the luxury" of having staff in order "to rewrite and fact-check every reporter's story has gone."

Instead, he believe that reporters and writers need to be imbued with both a culture and practice of getting their articles "right first time, every time."

To that end, he calls for a system in which student journalists are required to be tested on basic journalistic (and literature) skills - such as spelling, grammar, writing to length, headline-writing and "getting the best out of dull stories - before they are given newsroom jobs.

Huw Edwards' top 10 tips for being a news presenter

Huw Edwards' top 10 tips for being a news presenter. 

Huw Edwards is a Bafta award-winning BBC News presenter. After joining the BBC as a News Trainee in 1984 he went on to become a political correspondent, before being asked to present the Six O'clock News on BBC One in 1994.

For the last ten years he has presented the BBC's News at Ten on BBC One and he also presents the five hour on the BBC News Channel.

Here are his top 10 tips for becoming a news presenter.

Monday, 24 March 2014

In new media environment, the public decides who's a journalist

In new media environment, the public decides who's a journalist.

"Journalism is, of course, a disinterested voice. It isn't a voice that urges the purchase of something or a vote for someone or a particular behavior. It's an independent voice that can't be tied to an association, a brand or an organization. It's a responsible voice that expresses itself about things that are relevant to a society. In the world of digital journalism, a journalist is a person who speaks from an ethical point of view."

In the unverified digital world, are journalists and bloggers equal?

In the unverified digital world, are journalists and bloggers equal?

Teaching journalism in the 21st century is a little like packing a wardrobe for a month-long trip into a carry-on suitcase: You keep trying to squeeze one more thing into the bulging bag while praying that the zipper won't burst.

When I studied journalism in the 1980s at San Francisco State University, where I now teach, the curriculum was limited to print journalism. We learned how to report and write; we studied media law, history and ethics; and by the end of senior year, we felt reasonably well-equipped to work as reporters. Ah, those days!

Course Remix: Meshing Reporting Skills and Multimedia Storytelling

Course Remix: Meshing Reporting Skills and Multimedia Storytelling.

Teaching journalism in the 21st century is a little like packing a wardrobe for a month-long trip into a carry-on suitcase: You keep trying to squeeze one more thing into the bulging bag while praying that the zipper won't burst.

When I studied journalism in the 1980s at San Francisco State University, where I now teach, the curriculum was limited to print journalism. We learned how to report and write; we studied media law, history and ethics; and by the end of senior year, we felt reasonably well-equipped to work as reporters. Ah, those days!

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Lodestars in a Murky Media World -

ARE today's college-age journalists doomed, entering a business in free fall that is incapable of allowing most of them to earn a living? Or are they lucky, coming into a media world bursting with new possibilities?

And given the strange new territory, still largely unnavigated, are there any stars to steer by?

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Finding a journalistic niche to survive in - One Man and His Blog

There's something in me that loves working with really good journalists who have drilled down into a reporting specialisation and can ride the wave of their readers' enthusiasm for a subject. It doesn't matter how dull some of these subjects might seem at first glance; if you really roll up your neuro-sleeves and get stuck in, you can find what's fascinating and exciting in any subject at all - and that's an incredibly valuable skill to have right now.

Sent from my iPhone

Sunday, 2 March 2014

NGOs, Journalists and the media: because even NGOs have PR teams

NGOs, Journalists and the media: because even NGOs have PR teams.

When I read a review of a hotel in the travel section of my favourite newspaper, the fact of who has paid for the accommodation is usually stated somewhere at the bottom: accommodation was provided by a travel company / the hotel, etc. In the Observer restaurant review, Jay Raynor pays for his food himself, and actively resists the freebies that might accrue from a chef desperate to curry favour. In refereed journals, published research should as a matter of course identify the funding which supported the work.

On the Meaning of Journalistic Independence

On the Meaning of Journalistic Independence.

This morning, I see that some people are quite abuzz about a new Pando article "revealing" that the foundation of Pierre Omidyar, the publisher of First Look Media which publishes The Intercept, gave several hundred thousand dollars to a Ukraininan "pro-democracy" organization opposed to the ruling regime. This, apparently, is some sort of scandal that must be immediately addressed not only by Omidyar, but also by every journalist who works at First Look. That several whole hours elapsed since the article was published on late Friday afternoon without my commenting is,for some, indicative of disturbing stonewalling.

Monday, 10 February 2014

8 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Date a Journalist

8 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Date a Journalist

Someone very sexy once told me, "Journalism is a sexy profession."

Indeed, it is.

We interview good looking people, we drink expensive champagne, we get to stay "two nights and three days" in luxurious island resorts and we get it all for free. Sexy (and smug) on all grounds, damn straight!

While it's bursting off its seams with sexiness, there's also a very dangerous side to journalism that very few are aware of. Well, apart from all the sleepless nights from unforgiving deadlines that make them crazy delirious, there's another alarming factor.

There are many reasons why journalists make the best partner one can ever have; but there are also reasons why they can be your absolute nightmare. Taking optimism by its balls, I'm here to talk you through -- and warn you -- of the latter.

FAQ: Big data and journalism

FAQ: Big data and journalism

In the same way they always have. Journalists' role has always been to make choices about which information to prioritise, what extra information they need, and what information to include in the story they communicate.

Data is just another type of information. So journalists decide: what is the story I'm reporting here? What parts of the data will help me to find that story? Which parts will flesh out the context, or detail? Which will lead me to interesting human aspects?

Different journalists will find different things interesting – or 'meaningful' – in the same piece of data. Often there are many different stories to tell, so it's a case of prioritising and focusing.

Ian Burrell: Broadcasters’ new recruitment policy shows that somebody still loves newspaper reporters

Ian Burrell: Broadcasters' new recruitment policy shows that somebody still loves newspaper reporters.

Even now, post-Leveson and in the midst of the phone-hacking trial, the written media still commands the greatest respect in broadcasting for setting the news agenda by breaking exclusive stories. The best wordsmiths are also admired for their ability to analyse news, using a medium that affords them luxuries of greater time and space.

It's why so many press journalists have recently been asked to work in front of the camera. Key vacancies in television newsrooms have been filled by Kamal Ahmed, who is leaving The Sunday Telegraph to become business editor of the BBC, and Ian King, who has been recruited from The Times to become the new business presenter on Sky News.

Friday, 17 January 2014

The world's hacks now think that UK press is less free - they may be right

The world's hacks now think that UK press is less free - they may be right

Just this week Polis hosted a group of journalists from newsrooms and regulation bodies in countries as diverse as Norway, Uruguay, America and Pakistan. UK experts in favour of strict enforcement of the Leveson proposals such as Martin Moore from Media Standards Trust (And Hacked Off), Steven Barnett and Natalie Fenton sat alongside critics such as Tim Luckhurst (Kent Uni) and George Brock (City Uni – ex Times) and myself. Regardless of the arguments we have in the UK about this – or perhaps because of them – the delegation seemed confused on the details. Luckily there were lots of experts on hand with lots of facts, albeit with differing interpretations of those facts.

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Where are the deadliest places for journalists?

Where are the deadliest places for journalists?

At least 70 journalists were killed around the world in 2013, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), with Syria proving the deadliest.

The annual report states that "Syria remained the most deadly place for journalists on the job in 2013, while Iraq and Egypt each saw a spike in fatal violence". In total, the Middle East accounted for two thirds of journalist deaths with a motive confirmed, last year. The deaths of another 25 journalists in 2013 are also being investigated by the CPJ to determine whether or not they were work-related.

Collaboration, not competition, is the future of journalism

Collaboration, not competition, is the future of journalism

Sending a reporter to a crowded press conference used to make sense. Elbowing aside rivals to publish the story first was expected. Beating the competition–even by one minute—mattered. That all went away with Twitter because no one beats Twitter at breaking news.

But journalists can do something that Twitter can't: in-depth, transformational investigations such as the exposé on the dangers of acetaminophen by ProPublica and "This American Life." These types of stories don't happen through competition. They happen through collaboration.

Vice News wants to take documentary-style storytelling to hot spots around the globe

Vice News wants to take documentary-style storytelling to hot spots around the globe

If there's a mantra for the team behind Vice News, it might be: Go where the story takes you. The soon-to-launch news channel from Vice is designed for the type of journalist who wants to strap a camera to her back and jump head first into a conflict zone. That's already taken Vice reporters to places like Sudan, Syria, and the Central African Republic, to report on violence inside the country's borders. When Vice News goes live this month, look for a lot more of that.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Expectations for digital journalists

Expectations for digital journalists.

For all the gloom and doom you hear about the future of the news business, new opportunities seem to pop up all the time. Take the job Holly Edgell has at WCPO, the Scripps-owned television station in Cincinnati, Ohio. She's the "community editor" for WCPO-Digital, a new position that puts her in charge of social media strategy and hyper-local digital news. She's also been charged with fostering the integration of web and TV content.

10 Jobs That Are Actually Worse Than Being A Journalist

10 Jobs That Are Actually Worse Than Being A Journalist

Journalism is a regular on all the worst job lists. Sure, the pay is shitty, the hours are bad and the perks are pretty much non-existent (unless you consider free notebooks a perk). Despite all that, there's no way journalism, the Fourth Estate, is the worst job ever. We found 10 jobs that will make you thankful that you're an overworked, underpaid journo.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Mobile Journalism

Mobile Journalism

This is a collection of mobile resources from Mike Reilley and the Poynter Institute's Regina McCombs, Dave Stanton and Damon Kiesow, as well as many others. A list of mobile reporting tools appears at the end of this page. Most apps are tailored to the iPhone but have versions available for many other smart phones, too.

Book Review: Understanding Journalism

Book Review: Understanding Journalism

It has become a ubiquitous, almost obsessive, cliché: that journalism is dying and that the Internet is to blame for its terminal state. Newspaper sales are constantly in decline, newsrooms are shrinking, and in just the United States there are below 40,000 full-time media professional employees; the lowest level since 1978. Blogs proliferate, readers flock to free content, almost everybody can now be called a journalist, and in general media seems in total disarray. Sounds familiar, right?

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Six things all journalists need to know about the Defamation Act 2013 (which is now in force)

Six things all journalists need to know about the Defamation Act 2013 (which is now in force)

The Defamation Act 2013 is now in force and creates big changes to the legal climate for all journalists working in England and Wales.

Thankfully nearly all these changes are for the better. It is harder now for companies and individuals to sue for libel, privelege has been extended to include scientific papers and conferences and publications are largely immune from being sued over comments (provided they are responsible in the way they operate their commenting system.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

2013: A year in Twitter journalism

2013: A year in Twitter journalism

From Edward Snowden's big reveal to the Boston bombings, social media has become an established part of how news spreads and increasingly how it is sourced. In Twitter's S-1 filing prior to its IPO, the company listed a risk factor that "influential users, such as world leaders, government officials, celebrities, athletes, journalists, sports teams, media outlets and brands or certain age demographics conclude that an alternative product or service is more relevant" (emphasis added). We've seen no sign of that happening.

Journalism Is Difficult Task In Pakistan And Women Journalist

Journalism Is Difficult Task In Pakistan And Women Journalist

In Pakistan journalism is a difficult task. The journalists have to tread cautiously and on very delicate grounds. The press laws and Defense of Pakistan rules haunt them at every stepFreedom of the press,one of the four essential freedoms for a nation, is still a mere phrase in Pakistan. Journalists here cannot give free expression to their thoughtsviews and feelings and have to play to the tune of theauthorities. They have often to hide the truth from the public eye and stifle the voice of their conscience. Political condition, unwholesome social atmosphere and unhealthy competition,combined with the backwardness of the country, have made the profession ill paying. It does notattract the best brains-men of light and culture and high education. It is often a resort of the unemployed.