That includes ‘functions’ and ‘methods’ that allow you to request certain types of data; ‘arguments’ that allow you to specify what you want data about, or what format; and API ‘keys’ that act as passwords to access the data.
APIs can be very useful sources of data for data journalists. In this video — first made for students on the MA in Data Journalism at Birmingham City University and shared as part of a series of video posts — I explain what an API is and how they have been used in a variety of data-driven stories.
Writing for social media is a different skill to writing news articles, or even writing headlines. In this video I explain key techniques in shortform storytelling, such as the importance of quotes and numbers, images and video, as well as examples of narrative structures used in tweets and threads.
The video includes the following checklist to use with any piece of social media writing:
Notebooks are one of the ways that data journalists document their work, and make it transparent for others to follow and reproduce. In this video — first made for students on the MA in Data Journalism at Birmingham City University and shared as part of a series of video posts — I explain what notebooks are and walk through how to create one in RStudio.
Oh, and a quick caveat: since Colab notebooks were added to Google Drive, I now prefer Python — but it’s a personal thing, and most of this video can be applied to either language.
The talk by FiveThirtyEight’s Andrew Flowers mentioned in this video can be found here.
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the skill of making it easier for people to find your article when they’re looking for the story, or issue, online. In this video I explain some key techniques in optimising your writing for findability, some of the jargon involved in SEO, and three ‘levels’ that you need to consider in optimising content.
In a fourth video post on narrative concepts* I look at the different ways temporality can be used in factual storytelling, different choices that can be made about the narrator, and the principle of showing rather than telling.
In the latest video post on narrative concepts (you can see the previoustwo here), this video looks at narrative structure — in particular, how Cortazzi‘s typical narrative structure can help us identify common patterns across different journalistic formats, from the inverted pyramid to the WSJ feature formula.
Being able to identify these structures means we can adapt more quickly to new formats — including those on new platforms.
The video also touches on the use of temporality in storytelling, and how stories might jump back and forth in time to keep readers engaged.