online writing

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online writing

  1. 1. <ul><li>Writing for the Scanner </li></ul><ul><li>By Serena Carpenter, Arizona State University </li></ul>
  2. 2. 2003 Poynter Eyetrack Study <ul><li>Difficult to read on screen, so they read less </li></ul><ul><li>Scan for interests </li></ul><ul><li>Text, then photos, then graphics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>75% read all of text (online) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lead must be compelling </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>20-25% (print) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Less vested interest </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. 07 Eyetrack Study by Poynter <ul><li>Completion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>77% of online text read </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>63% finished the story </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Maps & graphics (88%) </li></ul>
  4. 4. Text Story <ul><li>Write tight </li></ul><ul><ul><li>300-400 words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>600-800 words </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Text Formatting <ul><li>Paragraph chunks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Text that fully conveys a single idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t indent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://venturacountystar.com/news/2008/mar/13/oaks-christian-asked-to-find-new-league/ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Headings within text (boldface) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Absolutely clear what they page contains </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Must not repeat </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider including informational, not clever subheadings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If text exceeds 300 words or more </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Pull quotes to draw people in </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Make your article as 'scannable' as possible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://cronkitezine.asu.edu/spring2008/hats.html </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Lists </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep short </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.denverpost.com/ci_4872351 </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Writing <ul><li>Short sentences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Subject-Verb-Object </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>One idea per sentence (which, and) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Two sentences or eliminate words </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A combo of broadcast & print </li></ul></ul><ul><li>No more than 5 sentences (OJR), 1-3 sentences </li></ul><ul><li>Single-spaced </li></ul><ul><li>Spaces between paragraphs </li></ul>
  7. 7. Short sentences <ul><li>Active </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A meeting will be held for the company’s director next week. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The company’s director will meet next week. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Attribution first (Intern at the Blaze) </li></ul><ul><li>Junk up sentences with empty adverbs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Actually, totally, absolutely, completely, continually, constantly, continuously, literally, really, unfortunately, ironically, incredibly, hopefully </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Lead - Straightforward <ul><li>Inverted pyramid (1900s) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Top-down </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lead must be compelling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Important info at top </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Photos <ul><li>Use your own photos </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid mug shots </li></ul><ul><li>Close-ups better </li></ul><ul><li>Add info value or draw reader in </li></ul>
  10. 10. Graphics <ul><li>Maps </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://cronkitezine.asu.edu/specialprojects/economy/housing.html </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Excel </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bar chart or pie chart </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://msujrn.com/meridian/schools/technology/technology.html </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Users understand better and faster when information is presented visually </li></ul>
  11. 11. Lists <ul><li>Providing a Service </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Contact info </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stats </li></ul><ul><li>Background Information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>History </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Instructions </li></ul>
  12. 12. Video <ul><li>Is it justified? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it enhance or complement the story? Should not be redundant. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Linking <ul><li>1 – 2 words </li></ul><ul><li>Clickworthy - Link with purpose </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lose their trust </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Link outbound </li></ul><ul><ul><li>NBC’s Chicago affiliate begins to act as guide, rather a TV station </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/27/world/middleeast/27contractor.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin </li></ul></ul><ul><li>No “click here” or full URLs </li></ul>
  14. 14. Searchable Headlines <ul><li>Don't use puns, metaphors or wordplay </li></ul><ul><li>Google pays greatest attention to the first 60 characters of any headline </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Many RSS feeds cut the headline off after 60 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AP – 40 characters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unique, urgent, short, rewarding (copyblogger.com) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>www.cnn.com </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Summary Deck <ul><li>Major online stories must be accompanied by a headline and summary deck </li></ul><ul><li>Brief summary under headline </li></ul><ul><ul><li>After the headline this paragraph can be the next section of text search engines read, so include keywords. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.roanoke.com/news/breaking/wb/ 113294 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/02/02/kroger.recall.salmonella/index.html </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Give up Control <ul><li>Link to original documents </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.edweek.org/login.html?source=http%3A%2F%2Fjournalist.org%2Fawards%2Farchives%2F000773.php&destination=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.edweek.org%2Few%2Farticles%2F2007%2F06%2F28%2F43scotusmain_web.h26.html&levelId=2100&baddebt=false </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Direct email address </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.coloradoconfidential.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=3558 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Serena.Carpenter [at] asu.edu </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Rethinking the idea of package </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaborate with others (photographers, videographers, design, web) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.nytimes.com/indexes/2007/04/16/ </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>What is SEO? </li></ul>
  18. 18. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) <ul><li>Optimizing a Web site for search engines so people can find your content </li></ul><ul><li>Google dominates </li></ul><ul><li>25/75 rule </li></ul>
  19. 19. 25% of SEO (page) (Hubspot) <ul><li>Page Title </li></ul><ul><li>Headings </li></ul><ul><li>Page text </li></ul><ul><li>Bold </li></ul>
  20. 20. 25% of SEO = code <ul><li>Meta tags (keywords, images) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Alt text on images/video </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Descriptive file names </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Too many tags and categories are not useful </li></ul></ul></ul>
  21. 21. 75% of SEO = Outside sources (Hubspot) <ul><li>Recommendation from friends </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“I know Mike Smith.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“Mike Smith is a marketing expert.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Links to your site are online recommendations </li></ul><ul><li>Use social media and comments to encourage people link to you </li></ul>
  22. 22. Thursday <ul><li>Lecture: 1) promoting your blog, 2) social networking, and 3) using social media </li></ul><ul><li>Second blog post, About page, and comment is due </li></ul>

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