Monthly Archive: September 2016


First Draft | September 22nd, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #
Reflecting on EIJ and journalism

Cafe du Monde based in New Orleans, the site for the recent Excellence in Journalism conference. (Photo: justinsomnia.org/Wikimedia Commons)

The famous author E.L. Doctorow had a saying about writing: “Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.”

The same can be said of the Excellence in Journalism conference, which took place this week in New Orleans. Journalism, in this case, is an exploration, and you’re constantly learning as you go along. Continue reading


First Draft | September 13th, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #
How weird do I want to get?

As part of Generation J’s ongoing series of guest essays, Emily Bloch of Florida Atlantic University considers why a different element of programming can help reinforce some journalistic principles.

Interviewing musicians is a lot like interviewing zombies: they can be easily sidetracked, are often monosyllabic and they don’t always smell great.

It’s not their faults — the musicians or the zombies — they’ve probably had a long day with the press where they keep getting asked the same questions after having spent the last hour performing. Continue reading


First Draft | September 12th, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #
6 Low- to No-Cost Ways to Learn New or Improve Existing Skills

Education never ends for journalists especially those on the techy side. Understanding trendy technologies,  social sites, and learning new, necessary skills are all part of the job. But learning new or improving existing skills can be really expensive, right? Not if you know who to follow, what to learn, and how to find such opportunities:

Stay-up-to-date with the latest technology and media news.

By keeping up with the latest tech news and state of the media, then you’re less likely to be caught by surprise. Continue reading


First Draft | September 9th, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #
A formidable dream: Mistakes college journalists make on their way to professional journalism

Guest Post By Victoria Blake @victoriablake22

When you start writing a paper, it is sometimes encouraged to write the ending first and the rest will become easier. However, when transitioning from college to professional journalism, this can be daunting. What if you don’t know the ending so you start with your beginning first? Could you end up making a mistake you wish you could take back?

I asked Cessna Winslow, one of my professors at Tarleton State University, this question in an email: “What are the mistakes college journalists make going into professional journalism?”

Here are her responses. Continue reading


First Draft | September 6th, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #
Peter Mansbridge and public broadcasting

It was the night of the 20th of October, 2015. I switched my TV on to C-SPAN 2 where they were simulcasting with the CBC, the public broadcaster in Canada, to air coverage of the country’s elections. The night ended in what many saw as a political upset — Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party would win a majority in Canada’s House of Commons, and he would become the next Prime Minister, replacing Stephen Harper and the Conservatives, who had been in power for almost a decade. Continue reading


Net Worked | September 2nd, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #
Accuracy in an algorithmic age

In order for it to be effective with users, Facebook must present accurate and fair information. (Photo: Pixabay)

This week, it emerged that the editors behind the Trending Topics section at Facebook had been fired, and that the algorithm would be at the core of finding stories that users would want to hear about.

It hasn’t gone quite as planned. The notable instance came last Saturday about a story surrounding the Fox News presenter Megyn Kelly. Continue reading


First Draft | September 1st, 2016 | #, #, #, #, #, #, #, #
Why you should volunteer your journalism skills

In this digital age, landing a job has become more difficult. Here, SPJ’s Katie-Leigh Corder considers how volunteering can help you in the job market.

In a society where both new and seasoned journalists are expected to keep up with the digital revolution and competition, feelings of being overwhelmed are commonplace. How are you expected to land a job if:

You just graduated and don’t have any years (or decades) of professional experience The skills required include either a few or ALL of the following: produce videos, manage social media, write stories and blogs, build graphics, build a rocket ship to the moon, etc. Continue reading