– Written Communication
– Critical Thinking
– Drawing Conclusions from Complex Information
Kristie Resume (Unofficial Transcript attached at bottom of Resume)
The Knight Center for Journalism is offering its first free online investigative journalism course that will take place beginning May 12th to June 14th. This five-week course is known as MOOC or a massive open online course. MOOC are courses that are recorded using video and shared over the internet. The investigative journalism course is not just offered to journalism students, but also to journalism professors and journalists as well.
The reporters that will be teaching this course are Brant Houston, Steve Doig, Lise Olsen and Michael Berens, who are all investigative journalists. The course will be taught by a different professor every week, leading you to the way of how to write and present an investigative journalism story.
“This is a great opportunity for people from around the world to learn the basics of investigative reporting, no matter what level of experience or skills you have now,” instructor Brant Houston said. “We will cover from start to finish, how to conceive and carry out an investigative story.”
But what is investigative journalism exactly? Investigative journalism helps uncover corruption, spotlights social plights, influences public policy and demands change. This class will be covering the basics of investigative journalism, from general concepts to how to carry out journalism investigations, which includes finding databases and documents, using social media to find information and much more.
When I saw that this course was free to the public I started leaning to thinking about taking this course. There are so many options when it comes to journalism and I feel as if investigative journalism is something I would be really interested in.
To register or learn more about the course: go here.
The blog, “How to make an editor’s job easier”, talks about the importance of a freelance writer to keep a good relationship with their past editors to get new assignments every week. This is not just a good tip for freelance writers but for every type of journalist because your editor is the one that not just hands out the stories but also shows you how to improve. Keeping up on your deadlines makes your life and your editor’s life so much easier and shows that you are serious about your work.
They list a few basic tips that you should use to create that long lasting relationship with your editor, simply: “be timely, courteous and professional. Be honest and open if you can’t make a deadline. And most importantly: make sure that your article is thoroughly fact checked,” Aneya Fernando said.
If you can’t get an article done right away because lack of contacts or life is just getting in the way, the editor is always there to help you. But checking your work before you send it into your editor and putting it in on time, saves work and time for your editor.
Executive editor of Parents magazine, Chandra Turner, said “that nothing drives an editor crazier than reading a wonderful piece and having it fall apart in fact checking. Writers should source all their content. Have your backup for everything that you have written.” Always research your topic before hand and make sure you have credible sources.
Being a writer for the Royal Purple, my editor always makes sure she checks on our progress for the week every Thursday to see if she can help in any way if we are unable to get it done on time or have been unable to reach any of the contacts that she has given us. With all the time the editors put in Monday nights on their sections, it is really stressed that we get our articles to them on time every week. Some times life gets in the way for you or the people you are trying to contact, but what I have learned from this semester is to always make your editor aware!
More advice is given here on what editors expect at mediabistro .
Link to my Storify story:
The CUNY Graduate School of Journalism is in the beginning stages of a new master’s degree in social journalism. This degree’s main focus will be on the importance of the engagement of the community instead of worrying solely about the product (a story).
“I have been arguing for some time that journalism must shift from seeing itself primarily as a producer of content for masses to become more explicitly a service to individuals and communities. Content fills things, service accomplishes things,” Jeff Darvis said.
Instead of getting your interviews in and getting a story knocked out, journalists need to get their feet wet in their work and that you are doing more then just writing a story, you are creating a service. This master’s degree will teach students/journalists the relationship skills that every journalist needs and how to be engaged in the community. Yes, reporting and getting content for a story is important but it also is about listening to what the people want and need.
This major may sound close to connecting with people via social media but that is not the case. People think that engagement these days is judged on how many likes, friends and shares they get but that does not build a journalist’s success.
“Social journalists will judge their success instead by whether the public they serve and its members accomplish their goals, meet their needs, improve their lots and their communities — and whether they connect with each other to better understand each other through discussion and information,” Darvis said.
Social journalism is how a journalist’s involvement and work will affect a community. It teaches the importance of engagement, not just with the journalist and the community but the community working together to achieve its goals.
“It’s about results, outcomes, and impact.”
From the blog “10,000 Words”, they talk about the importance of freelance journalists keeping up with their social media sites. They say that as a freelance writer, the most important and vital thing to your career is keeping up with maintaining your social media sites to keep your connections. Yet, with the busy schedule of a journalist, it is easy to put in the back of your mind.
An unnamed writer said that when she noticed that her social media sites, such as Twitter, were being neglected, she set goals for herself to keep up with the fast pace of social media. One thing that she points out is the appropriate use of social media and how to use it effectively.
She compares journalists interactions in social media to every day life, “All rules that apply in person apply online,” she said. “If you’re a little baffled on how to maximize your social media experience, pick one outlet to focus on, rather than trying to be omnipresent.” Keeping up with social media is key to keeping a freelance writer’s work alive and relevant but just like life, sometimes you can’t take on multiple things at once.
Staying interactive on social media is not just important for freelance journalists but all journalists. For freelance journalists, it gets your work out there and keeps your work noticed, but social media provides many outlets for all types of journalists. Most importantly, it keeps you connected to your audience.
Advancing the Story: App makes creating mobile video faster, easier for TV reporter
The new Videolicious application on smart phones helps reporters to easily share their stories on social media sites. Beth Parker, from Fox 5 in Washington DC, was doing a story on a recent storm that took down a tree on top of a blind woman’s home and while waiting for the photojournalist to set up the video feed, she decided to pull out her smart phone.
The Videolicious application allowed Parker to take a condensed version of her story on her phone to get information out to her viewers quicker, almost like a sneak peak at the full story:
“I was able to take still photos and video on my phone and create a condensed version of my story to get the information out and tease ahead to the show,” Parker said.
This application lets journalists get out small tid bits of their stories, while being able to record their own voice, shoot video clips and drag and drop them to where they want in a very short period of time. It also helps edit your videos and share them on social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook. This application helps reporters connect easier to their mobile audience.
“I’m dealing constantly with our mobile folks.” said Parker. “I say, This is why I think this would do really well on the Web; I constantly try to drive those numbers.”
I think this new application is very useful, especially with trying to connect with a news station’s mobile audience. Not is it just easy for reporters to use and easily accessible, but it is also lets the mobile viewers get early access to a story. With our generation being mostly technology based, reporters need to keep finding new ways to connect to their mobile audiences.
Twitter isn’t just used to talk about what you have done throughout the day and to keep in touch with friends, but also a way for journalists to find resources, report stories and most importantly, to find job leads.
“If you’re a journalist not using Twitter in 2014, you’ve chosen to be less skilled, less relevant, less visible and less connected,” Steve Buttry said.
If you are just starting out in the world of journalism or have recently got let go from a job, Twitter not just offers words of encouragement from family and friends but also resources and connections to find your next job. Steve Buttry recently got fired from one of his jobs last week and even though it was a difficult day for him he said that, “it was still one of the best days of my career”.
The Associated Press put a story out of his firing and that soon led to more journalists reading it outside of the town he worked with, again offering him words of endearment and also letting him know if they hear any future job opportunities. These words of encouragement from his friends, family and other people that followed his blog gave him that drive to not give up.
Besides being consoled by others, the best part of being so involved on Twitter was the many job opportunities he ended up receiving through all his connections. “I got more leginimate opportunities for the next phase of my career on Wednesday than I did in six months of job hunting in 1992-93 (when he was first fired)”. Buttry said that when he was fired and active on Twitter, it was much better then when he was fired and didn’t have Twitter.
— Mitch Pugh (@SCMitchP) April 2, 2014”
Just like we are doing with social media on our class website, being active on Twitter and other social media sites gives us more connections along with building our credibility. Social media, like Buttry said, does not have to be you posting about what you had for breakfast, but provides us with more opportunities that people may not be aware of.