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Redefining Multimedia Toward A
More Packaged Journalism Online
By Amy Zerba
Multimedia Online
• http://www.washingtonpost.com/
• http://www.heraldsun.com/gallery/elvis.html
Why define multimedia
on news sites?
• No clear definition of multimedia
• What does it look like?
• What does it do?
• Purpose: Operational definition for future
studies.
What is a medium?
• Medium is a means of communication, a
tool, to transmit a message.
• A photograph is a medium
(text, audio, video, graphics)
• A newspaper is a medium
(film, TV, radio, magazine, Internet, books)
• Surface level: All transmit messages
Multimedia Literature
• Integration of more than one medium
• Predates computers
• Classroom learning
• Purpose: Increases understanding of
information using additional channels.
Method
• Deconstruct concept into units
• Previous literature on multimedia
• Interviewed seven multimedia journalists
• Snowball method for in-depth interviews
• 1-2 hour interviews in Sept.-Oct. 2002
Method
• Washingtonpost.com
• NYTimes.com
• LATimes.com
• South Florida Sun-Sentinel
• Herald-Sun
• Myrtlebeachonline.com
• Freelance multimedia journalist/lecturer at
UC Berkeley
Research Questions
• RQ1. What is a multimedia feature?
• RQ2. What is a multimedia package?
• RQ3. What can multimedia online give
readers that they cannot get from reading
text?
What is a multimedia feature?
• Text
• Photographs
• Audio
• Video
• Graphics
Tangible media – we can see and hear
What is a multimedia feature?
• Interactivity repeatedly mentioned as a
multimedia feature.
• Use of “multimedia” as a noun or adjective
• Something is multimedia; and
• Something acts like multimedia
What is a multimedia feature?
• A photo slideshow without audio?
• An interactive map without audio?
What is a multimedia feature?
• A lot of “I-think-so,” “probably” “technically,
it’s just one [medium].”
• Uncertainty about multimedia concept
• Examples above part of larger context
Interactivity
• No clear definition
• Requires a related response component in
the communication exchange.
(3-step communication process)
• A hyperlink is the simplest level of
interactivity.
What is a multimedia package?
• More than one medium (static, dynamic)
• Context
• Interactivity
A multimedia package consists of more
than one medium in combination with
interactivity that is related to a story, event
or information.
Model of Multimedia Package
Fig. 1.1 Pre-Computer model of
Multimedia Package
Fig. 1.2 News site model of
Multimedia Package
What does multimedia give readers
that text cannot?
• Purpose: Additional ways to understand
information.
• Theme: User Involvement
(heightened user experience)
User involvement with multimedia
• “I got this email before that said, ‘I’ll never
look at a computer the same way again.
… … For some people this was the first
emotional experience they’ve ever had
with a computer that didn’t involve a
member of the family or email with a
grandfather, and that’s sort of a new
thing.”
(J. Weiss, Sept. 27, 2002, Herald-Sun)
What does multimedia give readers
that text cannot?
• Theme: Extension of reporting
• Some things better told with added media.
• The art of multimedia: Picking and
choosing of media to tell a story.
Extension of multimedia
• “I did a story about an … Elvis tribute artist
… that had to be done in video. I mean I
couldn’t see that any other way. You had
to see this guy move. And so, it doesn’t
feel like it’s actually a decision, it just sort
of feels like well, that’s the way I should
have done it.”
(J. Weiss, Sept. 27, 2002, Herald-Sun)
In summary
• Multimedia feature is the integration of
more than one medium.
• Multimedia features on news sites: text,
photographs, graphics, audio and video
(static or dynamic)
• Multimedia package consists of more than
one medium combined with interactivity
that is related to a story, event or
information.
In summary
• Primary purpose of multimedia on news
Web sites is to give users additional ways
to understand a story.
• Heightened user involvement in a story
• Extension of reporting
Closing Remarks
• Purpose of study:
Definition of multimedia package
• Young adults? Non-readers?
• Different learning styles?
• Time multimedia journalists put into
producing packages – users even care?
• Future Study: Dimensions of multimedia?
• Future Study: Uses and Gratifications?
Redefining

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Redefining

  • 1. Redefining Multimedia Toward A More Packaged Journalism Online By Amy Zerba
  • 2. Multimedia Online • http://www.washingtonpost.com/ • http://www.heraldsun.com/gallery/elvis.html
  • 3. Why define multimedia on news sites? • No clear definition of multimedia • What does it look like? • What does it do? • Purpose: Operational definition for future studies.
  • 4. What is a medium? • Medium is a means of communication, a tool, to transmit a message. • A photograph is a medium (text, audio, video, graphics) • A newspaper is a medium (film, TV, radio, magazine, Internet, books) • Surface level: All transmit messages
  • 5. Multimedia Literature • Integration of more than one medium • Predates computers • Classroom learning • Purpose: Increases understanding of information using additional channels.
  • 6. Method • Deconstruct concept into units • Previous literature on multimedia • Interviewed seven multimedia journalists • Snowball method for in-depth interviews • 1-2 hour interviews in Sept.-Oct. 2002
  • 7. Method • Washingtonpost.com • NYTimes.com • LATimes.com • South Florida Sun-Sentinel • Herald-Sun • Myrtlebeachonline.com • Freelance multimedia journalist/lecturer at UC Berkeley
  • 8. Research Questions • RQ1. What is a multimedia feature? • RQ2. What is a multimedia package? • RQ3. What can multimedia online give readers that they cannot get from reading text?
  • 9. What is a multimedia feature? • Text • Photographs • Audio • Video • Graphics Tangible media – we can see and hear
  • 10. What is a multimedia feature? • Interactivity repeatedly mentioned as a multimedia feature. • Use of “multimedia” as a noun or adjective • Something is multimedia; and • Something acts like multimedia
  • 11. What is a multimedia feature? • A photo slideshow without audio? • An interactive map without audio?
  • 12. What is a multimedia feature? • A lot of “I-think-so,” “probably” “technically, it’s just one [medium].” • Uncertainty about multimedia concept • Examples above part of larger context
  • 13. Interactivity • No clear definition • Requires a related response component in the communication exchange. (3-step communication process) • A hyperlink is the simplest level of interactivity.
  • 14. What is a multimedia package? • More than one medium (static, dynamic) • Context • Interactivity A multimedia package consists of more than one medium in combination with interactivity that is related to a story, event or information.
  • 15. Model of Multimedia Package Fig. 1.1 Pre-Computer model of Multimedia Package Fig. 1.2 News site model of Multimedia Package
  • 16. What does multimedia give readers that text cannot? • Purpose: Additional ways to understand information. • Theme: User Involvement (heightened user experience)
  • 17. User involvement with multimedia • “I got this email before that said, ‘I’ll never look at a computer the same way again. … … For some people this was the first emotional experience they’ve ever had with a computer that didn’t involve a member of the family or email with a grandfather, and that’s sort of a new thing.” (J. Weiss, Sept. 27, 2002, Herald-Sun)
  • 18. What does multimedia give readers that text cannot? • Theme: Extension of reporting • Some things better told with added media. • The art of multimedia: Picking and choosing of media to tell a story.
  • 19. Extension of multimedia • “I did a story about an … Elvis tribute artist … that had to be done in video. I mean I couldn’t see that any other way. You had to see this guy move. And so, it doesn’t feel like it’s actually a decision, it just sort of feels like well, that’s the way I should have done it.” (J. Weiss, Sept. 27, 2002, Herald-Sun)
  • 20. In summary • Multimedia feature is the integration of more than one medium. • Multimedia features on news sites: text, photographs, graphics, audio and video (static or dynamic) • Multimedia package consists of more than one medium combined with interactivity that is related to a story, event or information.
  • 21. In summary • Primary purpose of multimedia on news Web sites is to give users additional ways to understand a story. • Heightened user involvement in a story • Extension of reporting
  • 22. Closing Remarks • Purpose of study: Definition of multimedia package • Young adults? Non-readers? • Different learning styles? • Time multimedia journalists put into producing packages – users even care? • Future Study: Dimensions of multimedia? • Future Study: Uses and Gratifications?