A group of third year students on our journalism degree are running a live website all week. 4 You is aimed at 11-16 year olds and the group are finding writing for the audience hard.
Melissa Marshall, fashion and features editor for the group said: “We are only in our second day of the website but already it is pretty stressful! The hardest thing is trying to write stories that our target audience will be able to digest easily and will actually find interesting; but so far it’s been a great experience.”
Melissa is working with four other final year students – Richard Green, Eliot Mullett, Matthew King and Daniel Bardell – to update the site with breaking news. Each student has a specialist role, ranging from website designer to section editors.
In addition to the news items, the website has a news blog, editor’s blog and a sports blog, where readers are able to interact with the 4 You team and discuss different stories.
To make the site even more interactive, the team have set up message boards and are in the process of recording audio and video both for the blogs and for stories.
But as news editor Eliot Mullett states, this hasn’t been easy: “The more interactive we want to become, or the better we strive the website to be, the less time we seem to have in our editing role.
“Take Tuesday for example: I spent most of it sorting out the technical side of the website and helping the other guys do theirs. But when I finished for the day I hadn’t actually posted any stories at all!”
The students will not only be producing a live website, but also a magazine offering a more reflective angle on the news, as well as numerous features that are of interest to children.
Elliott says the team welcomes any comments or criticism about individual news items or design.