The internet has opened up all sorts of creative possibilities for journalists – and artists. The following is just a selection of examples of both – but which is journalism, and which is art?
I come upon examples of bad practice in publishing government data on a regular basis, but the Universal Jobmatch tool is an example so bad I just had to write about it. In fact, it’s worse than the old-fashioned data service that preceded it.
That older service was the Office for National Statistics’ labour market service NOMIS, which published data on Jobcentre vacancies and claimants until late 2012, when Jobcentre Plus was given responsibility for publishing the data using their Universal Jobmatch tool.
Despite a number of concerns, more than a year on, Universal Jobmatch‘s reports section has ignored at least half of the public data principles first drafted by the Government’s Public Sector Transparency Board in 2010, and published in 2012. Continue reading
— Christina D Kenny (@dfordalrymple) February 27, 2014
For some time now basic SEO advice on puns has been simple: don’t do it*.
But the Huffington Post story below (brought to my attention by Christina Kenny) shows how hashtags can make puns SEO-friendly as well – as long as they’ve been adopted by a larger audience, not just coined by the headline writer.
That headline actually has 7 keywords in total – it’s extremely heavily SEO’d for people searching for “sewage pipe burst” and “Kennington” or “South London”.
But it also recognises that many people will be searching for more on this story having seen the #poonami hashtag on Twitter. Continue reading
“The reporters then did something remarkable. They made a decision to cooperate among all the news organizations and to save first and report later.
“It wasn’t an easy decision. But it was clear that if they didn’t act, critical records of their own country’s history could be lost. The scene was already filling with other reporters eager to grab what stories they could and leave. In contrast, the group was joined by a handful of other like-minded journalists: Anna Babinets of Slidstvo/TV Hromadske; Oleksandr Akymenko, formerly of Forbes; Katya Gorchinska and Vlad Lavrov of the Kyiv Post. Radio Free Europe reporter Natalie Sedletska returned from Prague so she could help, and others came, too.
“… In the tense situation that characterizes Ukraine, conspiracies form quickly. To demonstrate their transparency, the organizers quickly moved to get documents up. By early Tuesday, nearly 400 documents, a fraction of the estimated 20,000 to 50,000 documents, had been posted. Dozens more are being added by the hour.”
For at least four years now, all my online journalism assessments have involved a ‘strategy’ element, including a suggestion that students use analytics to demonstrate an understanding of their audience, and that they can experiment with search engine optimisation and social media optimisation.
This year I’m going further with one undergraduate class. I’m making social media analytics compulsory.
There are dozens of free tools out there to monitor your social media accounts. Here are just a few I’m recommending: Continue reading
I’ve been told to tweet this tomorrow: ‘Really excited to be heading down to @BRITAwards tonight with [sponsors names here]‘. No, no, no.
— Tim Walker (@ThatTimWalker) February 18, 2014
Last week’s reports on a PR company’s demand to journalists that they post tweets in exchange for accreditation missed one important factor: the Advertising Standards Authority.
The arrangement – involving a PR agency handling Mastercard‘s sponsorship of the Brit Awards – was revealed when Telegraph reporter Tim Walker sent an email to Press Gazette. They reported:
“Before providing two journalists from the Telegraph with accreditation to attend the event House PR has asked them to agree to a number of requests about the coverage they will give it.
“They have even gone as far as to draft Twitter messages which they would like the journalists to send out – and asked that they include a mention of the marketing campaign #PricelessSurprises and @MasterCardUK.”
Do such messages fall foul of the ASA’s guidelines on “marketing communications” on Twitter?
The ASA’s press officer Matt Wilson said that they don’t have a precedent, but told me:
“If entry to the Brit awards was conditional on the journalist tweeting on behalf of Mastercard, we’d likely view that as a ‘reciprocal arrangement’ (i.e. the journalist receiving a benefit they wouldn’t have otherwise). Continue reading