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Writing & Editing Week 7
 

Writing & Editing Week 7

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Writing & Editing for Digital Media week 7 - focus on student media

Writing & Editing for Digital Media week 7 - focus on student media

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    Writing & Editing Week 7 Writing & Editing Week 7 Presentation Transcript

    • Writing & Editing for Digital Media Week 6: Page design & making the story work Workshop: Student publications
    • What does a good webpage need?
        • Home page/landing pages
        • Navigation
        • Branding
        • Search function
        • Useful links (useful to whom?)
        • Appropriate rich content
        • Footer (copyright, "About us" etc)
        • Archives
        • What else?
    • Taking advantage of Web 2.0
        • Web 2.0 is about how we use the internet to communicate. It's about users, creators and participation.
      •  
        • Watch this video. Seriously, watch it:
      •          The Machine is Us/ing Us          http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=NLlGopyXT_g
          • by Prof Michael Wesch, Kansas State Uni  http://mediatedcultures.net/ksudigg/
    • Web 2.0 = conversation
        • print = one way conversation
        • web 1.0 = online but still one way conversation
        • web 2.0 = millions of conversations
        • Jay Rosen from NYU talks about participatory media and "the people formerly known as the audience"
        • don't talk to "the audience" - get involved in lots of different conversations with individuals.
      •  
    • What does your website say?
        • Do you encourage readers to get involved?
        • Do you let people contact you online (via email, web contact form, etc)
        • Do you give people a reason to come back to your site?
          • ie news updates
          • does it look like the site content changes regularly?
    • What should a student publication do online?
        • Do you let people know how to find:
          • Your print edition
          • Your editorial office on campus
          • Who's on the editorial team
          • Where to send in a comment or news tip?
          • Where else your paper has an online presence (link to Facebook group, Twitter account, etc)
        • Look at different student newspaper websites and see if they encourage readers to contact you or get involved.
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    • What does Farrago do online?
        • Many Australian student newspapers have a bare webpage without helpful information
        • What questions would a reader have who came to your site? Does your site answer these questions?
          • How can I contribute a story or news tip?
          • How can I find you on campus?
          • How can I contact you online (ie email, contact form, comment on website)?
        • Lack of control of the website (usually hosted by the student union)
        • Poor/difficult to use Uni website infrastructure
        • Lack of support for going online -  funding/training/tools
        • Uni concern about publishing online
          • opening up website to comments, user generated content, etc - legal concerns, defamation etc 
          • concern that website needs to uphold University's image (website as corporate marketing tool) 
        •   What other challenges?
      Challenges
    • Yes, that's a  lot of challenges
    • Here, have a puppy.
    • Options for student publications
        • Depending on the web infrastructure and tools available to you, you may want to focus on:
          • Making your print publication more online friendly
          • making your current website more online friendly
          • exploring online options beyond your uni website
    • Make your print publication more online friendly
        •   publish & promote contact details including email addresses in the print version
        • Ensure that the relevent people have access to that email to read and respond
        • Maybe one generic email for news tips - which will be seen by or circulated to the whole news team.
        • Have a visible presence on online communities where your readers are (ie Facebook, MySpace, Twitter). A place to share your news stories (here's a taste of what's in the mag this month) and for readers to send you feedback and news leads.
        •  
    • What's a short term solution  to get us online?
        • University websites move as slowly as glaciers. 
      •  
        • Establish online communities outside the university to be able to do things quickly and to keep control yourself
        • Ning is a very easy way to set up an online community - it can be private (for your editorial team) or public (for all students of your uni)
      •       http://www.ning.com
        • A Facebook group or page is another option - and lots of students are already on there.
    • External hosting warning...
        • Beware: Terms of service, copyright and censorship. Do you want to control your own media and copyright?
        • Some companies claim copyright on media (photos! vidoes!) uploaded to their site (ie Facebook) - read the terms of service!
        • Some companies make it difficult to get your data *back* from their site if you want to leave (proprietary file formats, difficult migration process). Can you back up your data and take it with you?
        • Companies like YouTube (owned by Google) who host the data can decide to censor it ie if someone claims it is offensive. Try googling "YouTube censorship" or "LiveJournal breastfeeding" 
        • These companies doesn't need to announce when they remove material or why
        • If you publish politically sensitive material, you may want to consider hosting it yourself where you can control it.
    • Legal risks
        • I AM NOT A LAWYER!
        • We will look at legal issues in Week 10
        • Educate yourself on the laws around copyright, defamation & privacy - since you may be storing & publishing reader's personal information (a la Facebook)
        • You need to be aware of the legal considerations the uni faces if moving to online student publishing
        • If you are able to demonstrate knowledge about these issues, you have a better chance of the Uni supporting your move online.
    • What can you do now?
        • Talk to the editors of Farrago about how you can get involved.
        • Talk to its publishers (the University and Student Union) about how students can get involved in university web publishing & online news
        • Continue in print and web or migrate to web only? A long term decision which won't happen overnight, and involves you, the Student Union and the University. Not to mention your readers, the students.
        • What else do you want to do online? What do students want?
    • Extend your involvement on campus
        • Contact and work with student/community radio stations (TV/internet broadcasting?)
        • Work with teachers and students in the Media & Comms school as well as Publishing & Comms
        • Think about other departments that may have skilled people wanting to get involved - IT, visual arts, graphic design, TV & film production courses 
        •   Clubs and societies who may have skills to offer or a large potential reader base or source of stories (ie overseas students association)
    • Unofficial "offcampus" websites 
        • PROS: 
          • Bypass the University and Union and publish something independent. 
          • You control the website and can update it as often as you want
        • CONS: 
          • You can expect problems if you use the uni name or the name of your publication.
          • An unofficial website might be hard for students to find, and you probably can't link to it from your "official" website
    • If you start a separate blog...
        • GA separate blog or website loses the "Google juice" of your main website. How can students find you?
        • Link to the blog in the main navigation bar of your publication website if possible
        • Put a teaser for the blog (including links to recent posts) on your publication's main web page - you can do this automatically with a widget
        • Mention relevant blog posts in your print publication
          • ie at the end of a story, mention that the author blogs also and give the URL of the blog
    • Be good at Web 2.0
        • Don't just blast out your content and ideas. That's as annoying as advertising. Converse & respond.
        • Don't just use your website - comment on Facebook, other blogs & websites. 
        • Link to interesting stuff created by other people, that your readers might like.
        • The web is multimedia - use photos, video, audio.
        • Use a tool to manage updates across multiple sites at once (ie Twitter, Facebook etc) - eg Ping   http://ping.fm/
    • New tools available "off campus"
        • Video - YouTube
          • has limits on how long your video can be
          • for pre-recorded video
      •  
        • For live video streaming, check out Ustream
        •   http://www.ustream.tv/
          • You just need a video camera
          • You can show your Ustream on your website
          • Or people can watch your Ustream site on your own "channel" or page on the Ustream website
    • Blog software is powerful
        • Blogging software is publishing software - so it can be used to do a whole website if you want, not just a standalone blog
        • For example,  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/  publishes a very busy news website using WordPress 
        • Crikey publishes a whole network of blogs using WordPress:  http://blogs.crikey.com.au/
        • Or you can publish one individual blog:  http://www.foxforcefive.com/
        • Open Source blog software like WordPress or Drupal is free and supported by a community of developers
      •         
    • Blogs
        • Blogs - a free hosted blog  means it's on someone else's website (ie if you start a blog on WordPress.com, Blogger, etc)
      •   
        • If you host it yourself:
          • it's on your own website
          • you need to register a domain name and an account with a web host, then upload blogging software.
          • One easy hosting option is Dreamhost, because they can set up your blogging software for you  - check out Dreamhost Apps to see how it works
          • http://dreamhostapps.com/  
        •  
        • One cool tool is Cover It Live - http://www.coveritlive.com/
          • Great for covering live events "as they happen"
          • Check out the Demo on their website - it shows how you can get it up and running in two minutes
          • You embed it on your website just like you'd embed a YouTube video
          • Readers can ask questions and you can answer instantly
          • Crikey used it to do their US Election night coverage      
      Live Blogging
    • Free Image &Video resources
        • Sourcing free pictures, video and music is possible through Creative Commons
        • Creative Commons helps writers, musicians and multimedia producers share and build on each other's work, legally. It's an alternative to traditional copyright.
        • Barack Obama just made the White House website Creative Commons!  http://www.whitehouse.gov/
        • Watch this video: Creative Commons - A Shared Culture  http://creativecommons.org/videos/a-shared-culture
      •  
    • Find and share free, legal content
        • Find out how to access content - and share it - using Creative Commons instead of traditional copyright
        • Here are two sources of loads of sharable media:
        • WikiMedia Commons:  http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Main_Page
        • Flickr Commons:  http://www.flickr.com/commons
    • Get on Facebook!
        • students are already there
        • a way to promote your magazine and get reader feedback and news tips
        • Make sure videoes and blog posts autopost to your Facebook Page
        • Have someone in charge of updating/responding to the page - roster it if needed to spread the load
        • Keep it alive! Change the status update message a few times a week, or send out a message to your group/fans  
          •  
    • Be useful on Facebook!
        • Don't just use it as a way to advertise. 
        • Be useful and interesting
        • Use it as a way to communicate with your readers and make them interested in you and your publication.
        • How?
        • Break news & give teasers from your print edition
        • Publish video & photos
        • It's not all about you. Link to other interesting content! 
        • Give readers fun and easy ways to get involved
          • competitions
          • submit photos/videos
    • Facebook - Group or Page?
        • Facebook Groups and Facebook pages can do different things.
        • Check out which one suits what you want to do with your Facebook.
        • For a blog post about the pros and cons of Facebook Groups versus Pages for student publications, see:
      •      The Student Leader Think Tank:
      •      http://www.theslblog.org/2008/12/facebook-page-o.html
    • Twitter? Ya rly.
        • Twitter.com - it's a short message, microblogging platform
        • 140 character limit
        • You can post messages (tweets) and "follow" other people to read their tweets.
        • You can update by web, SMS or Twitter tools like Twhirl or Tweet Deck
        • If you are selective about your Twitter community, it's a powerful resource and you'll have experts at your fingertips. 
    • Journalists use Twitter
        • It's already being used by professional journalists, editors and publications
        • News broken there included the Mumbai terrorist attacks
        • You can break news and get news tips
        • Promote new content you've put online
        • Get feedback & let readers contribute to stories.
    • How can you use Twitter?
        • Jay Rosen - teaches Journalism at NYU
        • "It's a handbuilt tipster network. The people I follow bring essential things to my attention and keep me current."
        • "Twitter keeps me in touch with people who are friends of my ideas. I know about their projects and current obsessions; they know about mine."
        • check out his Twitter stream: @jayrosen_nyu
    • Join networks of student editors
        • Contact other student publications & editors - share ideas, potentially share resources
        • Join or set up online communities for student editors eg CoPress.org
        • Start a local community for Australian editors using Ning, Facebook, Google Groups,Yahoo Groups, etc
        • The NUS conference (week of 6-11 July 2009) will include 1 day devoted to student media. Contact them to find out more & get involved.
    • Useful resources for online publishers
        • Tools for Citizen Journalism -  a wiki 
      • http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Tools_for_citizen_journalism
        • Handbook for Bloggers and Cyberdissidents by Reporters without Borders
      • http://www.rsf.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=542
          •   includes advice on how to start a blog, get it picked up by search engines, ethical guidelines and recommendations for the best tool to use
          • information on how to blog anonymously and technical ways to get around censorship
    • Australian Resources
        • The Writers Guide to making a digital living http://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/writersguide
        • Arts Law Centre of Australia Online - Legal issues for bloggers: http://www.artslaw.com.au/legalinformation/LegalIssuesForBloggers.asp
    • University news online  
        • The Melbourne Newsroom
        • http://newsroom.melbourne.edu.au
        • The Union
        • http://union.unimelb.edu.au
        • Farrago
        • http://union.unimelb.edu.au/farrago
    • Is it any good?
        • Pick one of the Unimelb sites and answer the following:
        • Start at the uni home page and try to find the section you’re looking for (ie Uni news, Farrago, etc). How easy/difficult is it? Try using the search function to find it.
        • Do they have consistent headers, footers and navigation areas?
        • See if anything about the site annoys or confuses you, and work out what the site  should  be doing at that point.
        • Turn off support for images or JavaScript in your browser, or use your mobile phone and compare the experience to using the same site on your computer.
    • Workshop time!
        • Your challenge is to suggest ways to better use the Uni’s websites to publish and publicise student writing and news online
        • You should also suggest what kind of content you think Melbourne students want
        • Use your analysis of one of the Unimelb sites as your starting point
        • What navigation/layout changes would you suggest?
        • What kind of internal/external links would be appropriate?
        • Community/audience building: Where do students from Melbourne hang out online? How can you connect with them?