Thursday, February 22, 2007

The process of researching my news story

NB: The story is below:

British heptathlete Jessica Ennis once again beats close friend Kelly Sotherton at the European Indoor Trials and UK Championships in Sheffield.

Ennis was happy that she finished above Sotherton, and was the first to make a pleasant personal joke about it.

The Commonwealth bronze medallist won the high jump with a jump at 1.87m and was third in the 60m hurdles with a personal best time of 8.18 seconds ahead of Sotherton.

However, not one to be totally outdone, Sotherton did beat Ennis in the shot put, also throwing a personal best 14.42m to finish seventh.

Both athletes have already qualified for next month's European Indoor Championships.

"I'm sure when it comes to the European Indoors I will get it right and be up there in the 1.90s," said 21-year-old Ennis after her high jump win.

"A 'pb' in the hurdles - I can't complain with that - and then winning the high jump is great."

I decided to make my first news story about the Midlands based athlete Kelly Sotherton, and her close friendship and rivalry with team-mate Jessica Ennis.

I checked websites like Sky Sports and UK Athletics too. I typed in simple phrases in the search query areas of the website such as "Sotherton" and "Ennis" and came across a story of the two in competition, the final time before the European Championships.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The iTunes of Web-Browsing - SongBird

I may be extremely late jumping on this snowball that is very quickly rolling downhill, but I have just discovered SongBird. It is truly amazing.

As mentioned on the SongBird website, "Songbird is a desktop Web player, a digital jukebox and Web browser mash-up. Like Winamp, it supports extensions and skins feathers. Like Firefox®, it is built from Mozilla®, cross-platform and open source." - what more could be asked for?

Its like the new iTunes, but with extended web browsing, and Firefox/Thunderbird users will certainly have either heard of, or experienced this program.

Another fact that makes this program seem all the more exciting is that it is still in its development stage, so surely only better things can come of this program. Already it is cross platform, open source, and has 'sexy features'.

I consider myself to be at the front of the online picket line urging people to stray from iTunes, and experience the next generation of music and web browsing. Web 2.0? You bet.

"Songbird promises to be the Firefox of media players." —
Aaron Boodman

Friday, February 16, 2007

'Digital' Neighbourhood Watch Plan Proposed

A neighbourhood watch for the digital age, utilising the power of social networking, has been proposed.
Two lecturers in the US have suggested creating a network of Community Response Grids (CRG) in conjunction with the emergency services.

Its like the MySpace of natural disasters. Leave your text, photos and even video's on a website where the world can see.

The University of Maryland has decided to pilot a scheme for a networking website for a community response grid (CRG) with an initial run of 40,000 people. The aim is to alert citizens and authorities more quickly about disasters and attacks. Why not just dial 911?

The proposal is for community-driven websites to be run by trained volunteers working in conjunction with the 6,100 local 911 services around the US.

"Citizen reporters would report to a centralised authority who will take care of emergency response coordination and allocate scarce resources of police fire and medical services," said Professor Shneiderman.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Why online journalism skills are essential in the news industry

Online journalism skills are essential in the news industry because the ever changing industry requires a journalist to be more flexible, and more dynamic. More and more journalists are now taking their own pictures to accompany their written stories. Having the ability to write for online publications is another skill that can be added to a portfolio of talents.

Often, stories that are written for printed publications (i.e. newspapers) are very different to their online counterparts. Therefore, skills such as editing and sub-editing for online stories is useful. The news industry is ever changing, and more and more people are now accessing their news via different mediums than the traditional newspaper. This not only increases competition in the industry, but also quality.

The demand for jobs in the industry is increasing while the number of vacancies seem to be falling. Being a journalist, having a wide range of skills (i.e being able to write for online AND printed publications) makes you stand out from a very large crowd