Archive — Next Gen


Free tools that make your online content sing

This is one of a series of blog posts from the third ONA class of MJ Bear Fellows, three journalists under 30 who are expanding the boundaries of digital news. Applications are open to apply for this year’s fellowship until June 6. Fellow Armie Garde is assistant content editor and multimedia journalist for Sun.Star Publishing, Cebu City, Philippines.

One of my tasks as an assistant content editor for the Sun.Star website is to keep myself up to date on the many multimedia and online tools available to journalists. I track how other news websites use these tools and then figure out how to maximize their features.

As much as possible, online content should be both interactive and visual. I take advantage of free online tools to achieve that, and some are even available on a mobile device. Here are a few I’ve found particularly helpful:

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What Digital Storytellers Can Learn From Salsa Dancing in Istanbul

This is one of a series of blog posts from the third ONA class of MJ Bear Fellows, three journalists under 30 who are expanding the boundaries of digital news. Applications are open to apply for this year’s fellowship until June 6. Fellow Ashley Lohmann is a media entrepreneur and founder/director of Beyond the Bombs.

“For the first time in history, true global citizenship is possible,” said former YouTube Director of Product Hunter Walk, addressing a room full of furiously tweeting digital enthusiasts at the 2013 Future of Media Conference at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.

Walk described YouTube’s transition from a website for funny cat videos to a platform for global discussion, including the infamous KONY 2012 video by Invisible Children, which sparked controversy and garnered hundreds of response videos. He mentioned an encounter he’d had with a teenage girl in Iraq during a trip in 2009 to support new media in the country. When asked about the role YouTube played in her life, she said simply, “It allows me to feel connected to the world.”

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How To Start A Blog: The Kick In The Pants I Wish I Had In College

This is one of a series of blog posts from the third ONA class of MJ Bear Fellows, three journalists under 30 who are expanding the boundaries of digital news. Applications are open to apply for this year’s fellowship until June 6. Fellow Kyle Stokes is the youth & education reporter at NPR member station KPLU in Seattle.

Let’s start with a confession: Before I did it for a living, I didn’t get blogging.

I used to think reporting for a blog was Journalism Lite. A few bloggers emerged as leaders, including Andrew Sullivan, Anna HolmesNate Silver and Matt Drudge. I assumed other bloggers were Quixotic writers recording their streams of consciousness for nonexistent audiences. Why on earth would anyone waste their time? 

Now that I’ve spent two-and-a-half years writing an education blog for public media reporting collaboration StateImpact Indiana,  I can’t imagine a better, more relevant way for a reporter to own a beat. Nor is there any better way for an aspiring beat reporter to learn the trade — I’m looking at you, J-schoolers.

Publishing a blog is free, so don’t wait for your next class project before putting your reporting acumen on display. That said, a blog isn’t only about marketing yourself. Many traditional news outlets are downsizing, meaning there are not only stories out there dying to be told, but entire communities that may benefit from a moderator for their discourse.

Enter … you. With a blog you’re about to create. Right now. Here’s how you can get started:

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Deadline extended! One more week to apply for MJ Bear Fellowship

We’re extending the deadline to June 7 for applications for the 2013 MJ Bear Fellowships for early-career digital journalists, in honor of founding member MJ Bear.

Apply for the MJ Bear Fellowship

The search committee will select three promising, up-and-coming digital journalists — two in the United States or Canada and one internationally, in partnership with MSN International — who are just beginning to make their voices heard in the industry.

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Students, build your website and build your brand

As a digital journalism student, you know the importance of building your brand on the web. Employers and recruiters check Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and whatever else they can find that gives them a picture of who you are. You get that, right? But, lost in the entire buzz of social media, many students today neglect building a simple, standard web page as part of their online branding.

The personal website is not a dinosaur just yet; reading 140 characters only tells so much about you. As spring deadlines for scholarships and internships approach, including our AP-Google Journalism and Technology Scholarship, make sure to give your contacts a one-stop online shop to find you and all of your social media profiles.

Don’t let HTML coding or more complex website builders intimidate you. Here are three simple and easy website builders you can use right now. Each of the websites I created for this post took less than five minutes to complete. (These quick-build sites may be far from sophisticated, but half the battle is simply getting started.)

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The deadline dilemma: Four tips to improve any scholarship or internship application

Are you trying to land that big internship next summer? Do you want to stand out among a hundred other scholarship applicants?

For students, the end of the year not only brings the stress of finals but that special problem I call the “deadline dilemma”; There are more scholarships and internships than you have time to apply to, and all of them are due at the same time.

The usual default for this dilemma is to create a standard, one-size-fits-all application and mass-distribute to anybody and everybody. This only leaves you with the false sense of confidence that only hitting the “send” button can bring.

Just like a job search, your application needs to target your audience. Here are four ways to improve your application process this year.

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