Tag Archives: social networking

Facebook, Dunblane and a 2 page apology from the Express – a lesson in online journalism ethics


2 weeks ago the Scottish Sunday Express led with this cover story (PDF) on how the survivors of the Dunblane massacre were turning 18 and – shock, horror – drinking and making rude gestures. Reporter Paula Murray, it seemed, had “managed to inveigle her way into a Facebook friendship with teenagers from the town and write a salacious piece about their “antics”, based on information culled from their profiles.” You can read it in full here (text) and also here (PDF). The original was quickly taken down.

So far, so middle market. But what happened next was an abject lesson for the Express – and Paula – in how things have changed for journalists who will do anything for a ‘story’. Continue reading

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The services of the ‘semantic web’

Many of the services that are being developed as part of the ‘semantic web’ are necessarily works in progress, but they all contribute to extending the success of this burgeoning area of technology. There are plenty more popping up all the time, but for the purposes of this post I have loosely grouped some prominent sites into specialities – social networking, search and browsing – before briefly explaining their uses.

Continue reading

External links: the 8 stages of linking out denial

Do you have a link problem? You can handle linking. It’s just one post/article/page without a link. You can link whenever you want to. Or can you?

Where are you on this scale …? (Originally posted here.)

1 Don’t link to anyone

Link to other sites? But people will leave my site. They won’t click on my ads. They won’t read other pages. I’ll leak page rank. No way.

2 Add URLs but don’t make them hyperlinks

OK, that’s a bit ridiculous. If I’m talking about other organisations, I can’t pretend they don’t have a website. I know, I’ll put web addresses in. But i won’t make them hyperlinks. Brilliant, yes?

3 Add an ‘external links’ box

Even I’m finding that no hyperlink thing annoying when I go back to an old page and have to copy and paste the damn things.

I suppose I should have some links on my page. I’ll put them in a box. Over there (down a bit …). I’m going to use some sort of internal redirect or annoying javascript, though, to make sure I don’t pass any page rank. Mwah, hah hah.

4 Put some links in the copy

I don’t seem to be getting many inbound links. I guess I’m not playing fair. I know, I’ll sort out my workflow so that it’s possible to add links easily inside the actual copy. But I’m still not passing any pagerank. I’m going to put “rel=nofollow” on every link.

5 Give my users some google juice

Commenters seem thin on the ground. Maybe I’ll let them link to their own sites. I’ll use some annoying javascript to hide the links from google though. Most of my commenters are probably spammers, and I can’t trust them to police their own community, after all.

6 Link when I have to. And remove nofollow and any other annoying tricks

That seemed to make everyone happier. There are a few proper links on my pages. And people seem to want to link to me now that I’m playing fair with my links.

7 Acknowledge my sources

Oops. Spoke to soon. Been outed as pinching someone else’s idea and not attributing it. From now on, I’m going to make sure I always link to everyone I should.

8 Enlightenment: Make linking part & parcel of what I do

Internet. Inter as in inter-connected. Net as in network.

I get it now. I’m going to become a trusted source for information and advice, AND of what else people should read elsewhere on the internet. Blimey, more and more people are visiting my site and linking to it. Continue reading

Why the kids don’t use Twitter (and other insights on online community)

In case you don’t know of danah boyd – the online communities academic who recently joined Microsoft – you should. She recently made a presentation to her new colleagues which manages to combine a potted history of social media, insights into how adults and youth use them differently, and how society is being shaped by the above. It’s well worth reading in full, but here’s a nugget from the middle act: Continue reading

New approaches to research in a digital age

In January I made the following presentation to the Association for Journalism Education, talking about how digital technologies can be used to facilitate research. Let me know if you have had any similar experiences with using digital technologies in research yourself.

Guardian tops Reddit submissions list

The Guardian has had more stories submitted to Reddit.com than any other major newspaper site.

The news follows the Telegraph topping the Digg list and the Times topping the StumbleUpon list.

The graph shows how many pages have been submitted to Reddit for each site. It’s based on an analysis of newspapers’ Reddit submissions that also suggests the Telegraph is catching up with the Guardian – they tied for the number of stories submitted over the last week.

Submissions to Reddit: Guardian wins

Submissions to Reddit: Guardian wins

Telegraph.co.uk top of Digg league

The Daily Telegraph has more stories submitted to Digg, the social news website, than any other daily newspaper site.

Times Online may be winning at StumbleUpon, but the Telegraph has:

  • had more stories submitted to Digg,
  • more stories on the front pages of Digg,
  • and its most-Digged story has more Diggs than any other newspaper site’s top story.

The graph shows how many pages have been submitted for each site that made the Digg ‘front pages’ (ie proved sufficiently popular).

It’s based on an analysis of newspaper site pages submitted to Digg (which also suggests that the reason for the success of the Telegraph and Mail is that their users are more likely to Digg than those of other newspaper sites).

Newspaper site Diggs

Newspaper site Diggs