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lcome to the world ofurnalism, whereporters have beengging dirt, rakingmuck, king headlinesand adlines for centuriesw. It’...
Reporting basics2• Where stories comefrom• Finding and usingsources•Using the internet•Observation•Taking notes
Where stories come from3 Breaking news Scheduled events News releases Your ideas (enterprisestories)Stuff happens cons...
Where stories come from4 Always be ready. The bigger thestory, the more youneed to be on thescene.Breaking news events• ...
Where stories come from5 Writeadvances, promos orpreviews. Make sure thenewsroom keeps along-range calendar. “Tickler” ...
Where stories come from6 Some handouts aretruly newsy. Never print releasesverbatim. If you turn releasesinto a longers...
Finding and using sources7 Select sources forrelevance. Check sources foraccuracy. Never interview otherreporters, clas...
Finding and using sources8 Depth Story will providemore information andinsight. Context Reader discovers morepoints of...
Finding and using sources9 Attribute Identifies where anidea comes from. Shows reader you arereporting.Question and ans...
Finding and using sources10 Newsmakers Spokespeople Experts Official records Reference material Ordinary folksThe wi...
Using the Internet11 You can’t always trustwhat you find. It is no substitute forreality.A researcher’s dream come true•...
Using the Internet12 Quote and credit thesource. Paraphrase while creditingthe source Anytime you quote morethan three ...
Using the Internet13 Authority Sure of the author’sidentity, reliability andcredentials? Site sponsored byreputable ins...
Using the Internet14 Accuracy Does the informationoriginate with thesource, or is is secondhand? Can you verify thisinf...
Using the Internet15 Timeliness Has site been updatedrecently? Are there publication dateson all pages containingtimely...
Using the Internet16 Newgroups Online bulletin boardsorganized by topic. E-mail Most efficient way tocontact experts.B...
Observation17 Show; don’t tell. Reporters areeyewitnesses. You are the senses ofthe reader.Engage your senses to bring ...
Observation18 Sight Notice the little things. Sound Difficult to capture butworth the effort.Engage your senses…•Actio...
Taking notes19 Involves multitasking Listening Interpreting Observing Evaluating Writing ThinkingGood note-taking i...
Taking notes20 Running log of the time. Speed transcription. Skip small words. Abbreviate long words.A page in a repor...
Taking notes21 Choose a notebook that isa comfortable size for you. Use felt-tips or water. Use different colors fordif...
Taking notes22 NotebookPros and cons
Taking notes23 Tape recorderPros and cons
Taking notes24 TypingPros and cons
lcome to the world ofurnalism, whereporters have beengging dirt, rakingmuck, king headlinesand adlines for centuriesw. It’...
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Chapter 4

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  1. 1. lcome to the world ofurnalism, whereporters have beengging dirt, rakingmuck, king headlinesand adlines for centuriesw. It’s a history full ofbloid trash, of slimynsationalists, ofrunkards, deadbeats andmmers” (as a Harvardiversity president oncescribed reporters).But it’s a history full ofroes, too: men andmen risking their livestell stories of war andagedy, riskingprisonment to defendee speech. And as youn see here, reports havecome beloved charactersp culture, too, turning upmovies, comics and TVows as if guided by ancult hand.Every culture seekseffective ways to spreadnew information and gossip.In ancient times, news waswritten on clay tablets. InCaesar’s age, Romans readnewsletters compiled bycorrespondents andhandwritten by slaves.Wandering minstrels spreadnews (and the plague) in theMiddle Ages. Them cameink on paper. Voices onairwaves. Newsreels, Websites, And 24-hour cablenews networks.Thus when scholarsanalyze the rich history ofjournalism, some view it interms of technologicalprogress—for example, thedramatic impact ofbigger, faster printingpresses.Others see journalism asa specialized form literaryexpression, one that’sconstantlyevolving, reflecting andshaping its culture.Others see it as aninspiring quest for freespeech, an endless powerstruggle between Authority(trying to controlinformation) and the People(trying to learn the truth).Which brings to mind thewords of A.J. Liefling:“Freedom of the press isguaranteed only to htosewho own one.”In the pages ahead, we’lltake a quick tour of 600years of journalismhistory, from hieroglyphicsto hypertext: the media, themessage and the politics.Technical advances andbrilliant ideas forged a newstyle of journalism. It was acentury of change, andnewspapers changeddramatically. The typinewspaper of 1800 waundisciplined mishmalegislative proceedinglong-winded essays asecondhand gossip. B1900, a new breed oftor had emerged. Jourhad become big businReporting was becomdisciplined craft. Andnewspapers were becmore entertaining andessential than ever, wmost of the features wexpect today: Snappyheadlines, Ads, ComicSports pages. And an“inverted pyramid” stywriting that made storitighter and newsier.Radio and televisionbrought an end tonewspapers’ mediamonopoly. Why? Wellyourself: Which did yoReporting basicsInside ReportingTim Harrower4
  2. 2. Reporting basics2• Where stories comefrom• Finding and usingsources•Using the internet•Observation•Taking notes
  3. 3. Where stories come from3 Breaking news Scheduled events News releases Your ideas (enterprisestories)Stuff happens constantly
  4. 4. Where stories come from4 Always be ready. The bigger thestory, the more youneed to be on thescene.Breaking news events• Move fast.• Always carry a cellphone.• Carry a camera.• Some reporters alsocarry audio/videoequipment.
  5. 5. Where stories come from5 Writeadvances, promos orpreviews. Make sure thenewsroom keeps along-range calendar. “Tickler” fileScheduled events• Bone up on historybefore the event.• Team up witheditors, photographers and other reportersfor big events.
  6. 6. Where stories come from6 Some handouts aretruly newsy. Never print releasesverbatim. If you turn releasesinto a longerstory, verify facts.New releases• If you use a quotefrom the release, say“according to therelease” or “in aprepared statement.”
  7. 7. Finding and using sources7 Select sources forrelevance. Check sources foraccuracy. Never interview otherreporters, classmates, family.A reporter is only as good as his or hersources• Balance sources forfairness.• Cultivate sources fortips.
  8. 8. Finding and using sources8 Depth Story will providemore information andinsight. Context Reader discovers morepoints of view.The more sources you use, the better yourreporting will be• Reliability• Less chance ofinaccuracy or bias.
  9. 9. Finding and using sources9 Attribute Identifies where anidea comes from. Shows reader you arereporting.Question and answer•Anonymous source• May be only way to getinformation into a story.• Avoid in this class.•Source reliability• Be wary of every source.
  10. 10. Finding and using sources10 Newsmakers Spokespeople Experts Official records Reference material Ordinary folksThe wide world of sources
  11. 11. Using the Internet11 You can’t always trustwhat you find. It is no substitute forreality.A researcher’s dream come true• Do some realreporting.• Real people arealways interesting toreaders
  12. 12. Using the Internet12 Quote and credit thesource. Paraphrase while creditingthe source Anytime you quote morethan three words in a rowXI. Thou shalt not plagiarize• Rework and rewordthe idea until it ismore yours thantheirs.• When indoubt, always citethe source.
  13. 13. Using the Internet13 Authority Sure of the author’sidentity, reliability andcredentials? Site sponsored byreputable institution ororganization?Evaluating a Web site’s reliability• Information seemcomprehensive andcomplete?• Is there a way tocontact author orverify or challengeinformation?
  14. 14. Using the Internet14 Accuracy Does the informationoriginate with thesource, or is is secondhand? Can you verify thisinformation from anotherreliable source?Evaluating a Web site’s reliability• Are therespelling, grammar orfactual errors thatcast doubt on thesite?
  15. 15. Using the Internet15 Timeliness Has site been updatedrecently? Are there publication dateson all pages containingtimely material?Evaluating a Web site’s reliability• Can you ensure allinformation is up todate?• Are the links to andfrom the pagesupdated regularly?
  16. 16. Using the Internet16 Newgroups Online bulletin boardsorganized by topic. E-mail Most efficient way tocontact experts.Beyond the basics• Weblogs• Mostly opinion.• Writing your ownblog can establishdialogue with sourcesand readers.
  17. 17. Observation17 Show; don’t tell. Reporters areeyewitnesses. You are the senses ofthe reader.Engage your senses to bring stories to life
  18. 18. Observation18 Sight Notice the little things. Sound Difficult to capture butworth the effort.Engage your senses…•Action•Describe how the bigplay happened.•Verbs add verve.•Emotion•Show the scenewithout telling readerwhat to feel.
  19. 19. Taking notes19 Involves multitasking Listening Interpreting Observing Evaluating Writing ThinkingGood note-taking isn’t easy•Need a system toguarantee that what youreport matches the datayour source gave you
  20. 20. Taking notes20 Running log of the time. Speed transcription. Skip small words. Abbreviate long words.A page in a reporter’s notebook•Carefully spell ourimportant facts.•Use the first freemoment to reviewnotes.
  21. 21. Taking notes21 Choose a notebook that isa comfortable size for you. Use felt-tips or water. Use different colors fordifferent speakers.A page in a reporter’s notebook•Mark things that seemimportant.•Draw lines to separatespeakers.•Use quotation marksaround quotes.
  22. 22. Taking notes22 NotebookPros and cons
  23. 23. Taking notes23 Tape recorderPros and cons
  24. 24. Taking notes24 TypingPros and cons
  25. 25. lcome to the world ofurnalism, whereporters have beengging dirt, rakingmuck, king headlinesand adlines for centuriesw. It’s a history full ofbloid trash, of slimynsationalists, ofrunkards, deadbeats andmmers” (as a Harvardiversity president oncescribed reporters).But it’s a history full ofroes, too: men andmen risking their livestell stories of war andagedy, riskingprisonment to defendee speech. And as youn see here, reports havecome beloved charactersp culture, too, turning upmovies, comics and TVows as if guided by ancult hand.Every culture seekseffective ways to spreadnew information and gossip.In ancient times, news waswritten on clay tablets. InCaesar’s age, Romans readnewsletters compiled bycorrespondents andhandwritten by slaves.Wandering minstrels spreadnews (and the plague) in theMiddle Ages. Them cameink on paper. Voices onairwaves. Newsreels, Websites, And 24-hour cablenews networks.Thus when scholarsanalyze the rich history ofjournalism, some view it interms of technologicalprogress—for example, thedramatic impact ofbigger, faster printingpresses.Others see journalism asa specialized form literaryexpression, one that’sconstantlyevolving, reflecting andshaping its culture.Others see it as aninspiring quest for freespeech, an endless powerstruggle between Authority(trying to controlinformation) and the People(trying to learn the truth).Which brings to mind thewords of A.J. Liefling:“Freedom of the press isguaranteed only to htosewho own one.”In the pages ahead, we’lltake a quick tour of 600years of journalismhistory, from hieroglyphicsto hypertext: the media, themessage and the politics.Technical advances andbrilliant ideas forged a newstyle of journalism. It was acentury of change, andnewspapers changeddramatically. The typinewspaper of 1800 waundisciplined mishmalegislative proceedinglong-winded essays asecondhand gossip. B1900, a new breed oftor had emerged. Jourhad become big businReporting was becomdisciplined craft. Andnewspapers were becmore entertaining andessential than ever, wmost of the features wexpect today: Snappyheadlines, Ads, ComicSports pages. And an“inverted pyramid” stywriting that made storitighter and newsier.Radio and televisionbrought an end tonewspapers’ mediamonopoly. Why? Wellyourself: Which did yoReporting basicsInside ReportingTim Harrower4
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