Archive for September, 2009


Congratulations! Go forth and journalize!

Streets of Dreams: Behind the Scenes from Lisa Ruhl on Vimeo.

* * * Standing assignment throughout semester: Link Love: At least once a week, tweet a well-crafted and interesting referral (including link) to one of your colleagues’ blog posts. Don’t go more than seven days without updating your own blog.


Tuesday, Dec. 15: Final presentation of Streets of Dreams, 4th-floor faculty boardroom, 10:30 a.m. | Tech rundown, 9 a.m.
Monday, Dec. 14: Dress rehearsal


BLOG POSTS: As of this last week, you should have a minimum of 11 posts, spaced out over the semester. Eleven is the magic number; for class requirements, you may stop there! I do hope you’ll all continue, however, as your blogs are particularly rich and good.

Wednesday, Nov. 18: Brian Williams, 9 a.m. Open lab otherwise.

For Tuesday, Nov. 17: Packet for Boot Camp Multimedia This document talks about the handouts distributed in class today. Two are available online (Stop Code and Dreamweaver Style Sheets — on the Resources page, as usual), but one (of the examples) was only available in class. If you didn’t pick up your copy (there were some left on the desk although I thought I’d made the right number), please make a copy from a colleague’s handout.

Congratulations! The East Valley Tribune just published Veterans’ Voices with your excellent reporting work. We have until morning to compile a list of anything missing (Rebecca McClay’s was inadvertantly left out) or wrong (Pacific Theater, not Ocean, for example — thank you, Courtney, for spotting) and return it to the Web producer. So let me know of anything you see. Thanks!

Reminder that we meet, both sections together, in Room 354 at 8:30 tomorrow morning. See you then.

For Tuesday, Nov. 10:
Online scavenger hunt
Finish a Flash neighborhood slideshow
Finish any tweaks you’d like to make to veteran interview audio or jpg.

For Friday, Oct. 30:
Final StoryCorps audio is due with portrait.
Bring short blurb (couple of sentences) to go with it.
Bring photo of you and a 2-3-sentence written bio to use on a contributors page.
Complete the Flash Halloween assignment (animated pumpkins). Feel free to e-mail me the published movie today or tonight.

Thursday, Oct. 22 to Tuesday, Oct. 27:
1) Install a Sitemeter bug on your blog site and start monitoring your stats.

2) Do one of the following online short-courses at newsu.org: “Telling Stories with Sound” or “Video News Editing.”Reporting Across Platforms.” Each should take 1-2 hours; you can stop & start and progress at your own speed. Sign up to have a completion notification sent to me via e-mail. Register here (it’s free)
(NOTE: There were too many technical problems with “Video News.” I alerted Poynter and someone is trying to resolve them. I’m substituting the other one, which appears to work fine.)

3) Continue with your video and audio interviews: the colleague talent and veteran.

4) If you need help with FinalCut Pro, I urge you to check out the Knight Digital tutorial linked to on the resources page. If you’re adding raw footage, just remember that we do “transfer,” not “capture,” and that the camera discussed does not apply in our case. If the pdf does not open for some reason, go here.

Other suggestions: Basic Editing on FinalCutPro (video, 4:08) This is a nice series; you may want to check out other topics as well. You’ll have access to them from the video site.
FinalCutPro Tutorial: Basic Editing (video, 18:38)
FincalCutPro6 Tutorial: Beginner’s Guide, Part 2 He’s so cheery… but a nice step-by-step of navigation (video, 8:28).
Adding Text with FinalCut Pro (video, 3:12)

Tuesday for Wednesday, Oct. 21: Deconstruct a Web video with the storyboard forms provided. Download/print more by going to the url on them. Forty minutes of deconstruction is the goal, no matter how far into the video you get.

Friday, Oct. 16: Both sections meet 7:45-8:45 in Room 354 for video training on the camera. (Both sections continue on to Dr. Silcock’s broadcast section after a break.)

Directions were given in class for video work to be completed for the upcoming Wednesday video editing session (do TWO sequences — of anything — and a brief interview — of anyone; one question with a few follow-ups is fine).

After doing that work (the sequences and the brief practice interview), you are ready to collect the raw footage, both “A” (interview, “main body”) and “B” (supporting footage; details) for your first full video. The raw footage is ALSO DUE WEDNESDAY for use in class. See the handout distributed in class for further details. The finished full video, one-minute long, is due Wednesday, Oct. 28, start of class.

To recap:
Due Wednesday, Oct. 22, for use in class: Two sequences; 1 brief interview; raw footage for what will be your first full video.
Due Wednesday, Oct. 28, start of class: Finished, edited, first full video. This is the “colleague’s talent” video.

This is in addition to whatever is assigned for Dr. Silcock (nat sounds of your neighborhood; possibly other material I’m not aware of. I know about this because you need to take still pics to go along with the sound story).

Tuesday, Oct. 13: Both sections meet 8 a.m. in 4th-floor conference room for combined session.

For Friday, Oct. 9, through Monday, Oct. 12
Gotta love real-time news: Find examples of multimedia reporting on President Obama and the Nobel prize. Do not limit yourselves to U.S. — or even to “mainstream” — news organizations. Tweet your finds to #bc9 (link + descriptive material). If any other major news breaks out during this time, or if you come across some noteworthy multimedia on another subject, please tweet that, too.
Reading: In honor of Transition Time! Chapters 5, 6, 7 in “Principles” text.
Web work: Build on last weekend’s work. Start your neighborhood “shell” page. Will be shown/discussed in class on Wednesday. You are free to utilize pre-started pages from Dreamweaver and tailor them to your needs. Design and produce a working (possibly temporary) “home” page for your portfolio.

For Thursday, Oct. 1, through Monday the 5th: Plan and play time.
* Work through the Dreamweaver handouts, incorporating what you learned Thursday about tables into the assignment that asks you to produce a story page for one of your reporting assignments.
* Look at numerous examples of tables of content, portfolios and topic pages (issue shells). There are links I’ve found and included on this site, but look for others.
* Sketch out a plan (or plans) for how your portfolio might be arranged. Sketch out your home and landing pages. Use Dreamweaver as a planning tool to get at least a rough idea of what you might aim for.
* Think about what should be included on a home page (issue shell) devoted to your neighborhood. Use the art you took for a banner to experiment with some layouts and possibilities. We will brainstorm as a group as to the goals for these pages — but brainstorming will be less fruitful if thought hasn’t been applied first.
* Check into the student-produced page of the ONA convention from San Francisco. Watch #ONA09 tweets from time to time.
* Create a Google Map mashup for your neighborhood. This is likely to be something you build on to over the next few weeks. For now, learn the basics and create a start.

Week 6:
Tuesday through Thursday: Web work.
Friday: Joint session with Prof. Doig.

Week 5:Tracking, styling
Thursday: Brandon and Gordon, of the Gannett Innovation Team, are interested in talking with you over drinks and food at the Greek restaurant, Arizona Center, c. 7 p.m. They’re researching virtual tribe communication patterns.
Set up a news reader to track and gather the RSS feeds of blogs you’d like to follow. I used NewsVibe Netvibes to group all the class blogs; I use Google Reader for other uses. Bloglines is good, and there are many others. Just pick one or try several until you come upon one you particularly like.
For NewsVibe Netvibes and our class blogs, I took the blog’s url and added wp-rss.php after the com/.
Tuesday: Design review, quiz

Week 4: Design review, Web, Storywork
Friday for Tuesday (9/22):
1. Review for design quiz
2. Prepare a story proposal for neighborhood Soundslide (finished work to be c. 90 seconds/2 min. max). Final SS due Tuesday, Sept. 29.
3. Take photos in your assigned neighborhood and produce a potential (possibly permanent) banner for the coming neighborhood Web page. This is a similar process to what you did for your blog banner.

Handy resource for learning HTML: Do-It-Yourself from w3schools.com.
Here’s the playground for CSS: CSS Examples (this is also listed on the Tools page under Web Design)

Thursday for Friday: Practice the HTML work begun in class today. (Note to 7:45 class: the handout, available on the Resources page, has been updated to include the “named” colors and code for changing the color of specific text.)
If you haven’t tweeted your blog link, please do.
Link Love: At least once a week, tweet a well-crafted and interesting referral (including link) to one of your colleagues’ blog posts.
Tuesday for Wednesday: Bring me TOC image (150 pixels square) and blurb (up to 25 words) for your Soundslide, along with tweaked project, if needed.
Tuesday for Thursday: Read the Lester “Visual Primer.” Apply the Williams design principles to three Web TOCs (news sites or portfolios) of your finding. (Both handed out in class; no PDFs available.)
IN MEMORY Remembering September 11th

Reminder: Audio equipment due back in lab Friday, 2 p.m.

Week 3: Audio & Web prep
For the weekend, due Tuesday, 9/15:
1. Prepare the “breaking news/multimedia” scenario, noting as many uses of multimedia information gathering, checking and sharing as possible. Draw on the first two chapters of the text for ideas, but check, too, news sites (online, print, broadcast) and modes of communication (e-mail and text alerts, for example). If you spot a model for a multimedia report you think would be good to emulate in your scenario, such as a timeline, gallery or interactive map, make note of the url for demonstration. If there is a particularly good online resource that would help in your story, note that as well. Odd that the CNN/Potomac story/incident broke today…

2. Work on your blog: Have a theme, a custom header (you may use a placeholder that you produced yourself, but you must replace the default banner), at least 10 links on your blogroll, several widgets and a post describing the focus of your blog. You need a title and a completed “About” page. Several of last year’s BC blogs are included on this site’s blogroll; feel free to have a look.

3. Be thinking about a story, c. 60 seconds, you will produce as an audio slideshow that will be due in two weeks (specific date TBA). Neighborhood angle.

Wednesday’s assignment:
for 7:45 class: record and edit voiceover; add to SS. Tinker with timing if needed. Export. Bring entire project folder to class.
for 11 class: Work through Blogs 101. Do two tweets: one about a reporting-resource blog (this one CAN be listed in Blogs 101), the other about a blog that involves one of your personal interests (choose a blog NOT listed in Blogs 101). The tweets must include a link and intriguing message about the blog. Within the sharp space requirements, it needs to be informative as well as interesting. Include #bc9. Set up your own blog space, if you do not have one already. Think about how you will develop it… (do you detect a weekend assignment coming up?)

Tuesday’s assignment: Read chapters 1 & 2, Convergence.
Sign up for personal Web space. Here’s how: FAQs.
Recalibrate text/narrative in script if needed.

Would you like to see the archive of our #bc9 tweets? Click BC9_90509.

Week 2: Design/Composition

Due Tuesday: Soundslide from the “details/abstracts” assignment. Narration/story timed to c.30 seconds needs to be written by class Tuesday. Bring full project folder with you. Slightly updated version of the handout from today is available on the Workalongs page. Plenty of examples and inspiration on the growing list on the Extras page. (The “Silence” clip I gave you is actually 34 seconds. That’s fine. Hence the “c.30” in the directions.)

Finish for Friday: Album Cover Meme
Album Cover Meme exercise

Prepare for Thursday:
Headshots sized to 2 inches wide x 3.25 inches high (or whatever your section agreed on. I forgot to write it down!)
Abstracts so that longest side is 6 inches, smallest is 4 inches
All must be cropped to best composition AND size requirement, then saved as a Web jpg.

Read for Wednesday:
The gestalt of composition/Michael Fulks/Apogee Photo
Color, Contrast & Dimension in News Design/Pegie Stark Adam/Poynter (UPDATE: Link broken; ignore. Just do the next one.)
Interactive Color Tool
To do for Wednesday:
Open Flickr account (if you don’t have one already)
Upload your portraits and abstracts (minimum 10 of latter)
Tweet a Twitpic (share a photo, from Flickr or from desktop, on Twitter via TweetDeck) to #bc9

Two links from Twitter re Kennedy coverage:
Soundslide of AP images/Times-Dispatch
Big Picture: Sen. Ted Kennedy/Washingtonpost

Week 1: Twitter

Twitter yields uneven ROI for news organizations using automation, curation, interaction
Patrick Thornton/Poynter/Aug. 25, 2009

*** How Twitter will change the way we live
Steven Johnson/Time/June 5, 2009

*** Mashable’s Twitter lists, resources and how-tos

Who’s driving Twitter’s popularity? Not teenagers
Claire Cain Miller

J-Tweeters: Are they journalists or tweeters? Does it matter?
Karthikaswamy/Online Journalism Blog/June 25, 2009

*** Twitter: “Pointless babble” or peripheral awareness + social grooming?
Danah Boyd/Apophenia/Aug. 16, 2009

Evolution of a revolution: Visualizing millions of Iran tweets
ReadWriteWeb/July 25, 2009

Twitter in plain English

The city where every arrest gets Twittered

How to use Twitter for reporting
Patrick Thornton

Advanced twitter tips and tricks
Patrick Thornton


TwitterCounter http://twittercounter.com/
TweetStats http://tweetstats.com/
TwitterAnalyzer http://www.twitteranalyzer.com/Default.aspx
TwitterGrader http://twitter.grader.com/ (has useful tool to find out if someone is following you)
FriendorFollow http://friendorfollow.com/
LocalTweeps http://localtweeps.com/
Useful Twitter tools for writers and researchers

The Ultimate List of Twitter Tools http://thesocialmediaguide.com.au/2009/05/30/the-ultimate-list-of-twitter-tools/
NEW THURSDAY Twitter tools, David Pogue/NYTimes

Social Media assignment (due Monday noon):

Set up Twitter account including profile and gravatar (picture).
Send 5 tweets with #bc9 (the hashtag for our class)
2 of these must be @ replies; 2 must include links that are shortened urls
Follow 10 people other than classmates, current profs
Also find (following is optional) 7 local tweeters — these can be organizations, businesses, etc. Record those 7 below as a comment [the comments have since been deleted].
NOTE: If you catch sight of local blogs while doing this assignment, take note. We/you will have need of those links soon.

Photo Assignment (two parts, both due Tuesday start of class)

HEADSHOTS: Goal: a good image of each of 5 people (relatives and friends are fine). This is not an “environmental portrait,” but the type of photo that would be used with stories, bio profiles, avatars on social network sites, etc. You will need to take multiple shots of each person.
ABSTRACTS/DETAILS: Goal: minimum of 10 selected photos that will be used to produce a slide show (and perhaps other multimedia projects). These are to be taken either in your assigned neighborhood or in the downtown Phoenix area. Don’t mix the areas, however — take them all in downtown, for example, or all in your nabe. Feel free to work together, but, of course, you are responsible for your own work.
Loose ends: If you have not yet done your blog intro, please do so. Thanks!


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