Is this the new swingometer? Network analysis given the broadcast journalism treatment (VIDEO)

The BBC current affairs programme Newsnight delved into network analysis this week. Network analysis generally involves generating diagrams which show clusters of relationships between people: a particularly powerful way of showing everything from power relationships to echo chambers and which people dominate or bridge particular groups of people. Continue reading

VIDEO: Surveillance and the ‘1984 Generation’

Online video project newsPeeks have put together a documentary on surveillance. I really enjoyed it, so I’m sharing it here. Not only is the content great (newsPeeks were live at the Logan Symposium on the topic late last year so got some great contacts), but the production is a great example of online-native video (disclosure: I’m an unpaid advisor).

Continue reading

Join an election hackday at the BBC in Birmingham, Monday April 27

Hacks Hackers Birmingham logo

I’m organising an election hackday at the BBC in Birmingham on Monday April 27.

The event will involve journalists from the BBC and other news websites in the Midlands – but more importantly it’s open to anyone who wants to get stuck into data related to the key issues this election.

If you want to sign up to take part you can do so here. That page also includes details on times and location.

Some more details:

  • We’ll be particularly looking at issues affecting young people, and those affecting female voters.
  • But immigration, welfare and employment, the NHS, the economy, rural issues, the environment and anything else are all options too.
  • Some teams will focus on stories, spending some of the day turning the leads they find in the data into stories with quotes and other elements.
  • Some teams will be focused on tools: from interactive maps to resources to make it easier for journalists to fact-check claims made by candidates.
  • If you can’t make the whole day but want to contribute something, let me know and we’ll see what we can do.

MPs’ CVs now available in the Democracy Club App

democracy_club screenshot

The developers group Democracy Club have created an app which collects the CVs of candidates standing in the general election.

Democracy Club CVs is intended to help constituents get access to information on their candidates’ experience and background.

Users can also use the site to ask candidates for their CVs by sending an email or tweeting them. Continue reading

Games and journalism – free event this Thursday

Scott Dodson

Scott Dodson, aka @GameBiz, will be speaking at the event

This Thursday I’ll be speaking at a free event on the opportunities for using game dynamics in journalism: Gamification Augmentation.

The event, taking place in Birmingham, features a refreshing range of experts from sectors using gamification techniques, including Stephen Priestnall, Nick Webber and Scott Dodson.

You can register for a place here.

 

Peru data journalism project Convoca launches interactive tool on mining infractions

Screenshot of Convoca map

Peruvian news organisation Convoca has launched an interactive tool to enable citizens to access environmental information related to the behaviour of Peruvian mining companies.

The tool maps more than one thousand resolutions of sanctions made by a Peruvian supervisory body of the environment to penalise infractions committed by 132 enterprises. Continue reading

11 charts that illustrate how you can use Twittercounter to check your impact on social media as a journalist

twittercounter

Last year I decided to require my students to submit analytics as part of all their online journalism work. One of the tools that I recommended was Twittercounter.

The free version of Twittercounter does something very simple: it shows you a chart comparing two of three metrics: your followers, your volume of tweets, or the number of people you are following.

It’s not completely accurate, but its simplicity does something very important: it focuses your attention on whether your use of social media has any impact, on one metric at least: the size of your audience.

Of course followers is only one metric – I’ll write in a future post about other metrics and other ways of measuring those – but the ease with which Twittercounter works makes it as good a place as any for aspiring students to begin exploring the importance of measurement in modern journalism.

By way of example, here are 11 charts which show how a simple tool like Twittercounter can illustrate what you’re going right as a journalist – and where you can improve. Continue reading