Archive — Resources


ONA14 resources: Session videos, photos, tips and takeaways

As we pulled together our annual post-conference resources, we were again blown away by all of the inspiring sessions and great energy from this year’s Online News Association Conference, where over 1,900 journalists and technologists joined us in Chicago. We saw a whopping 936 new attendees and were thrilled with how our community welcomed them into the fold.

This was our largest conference to date and we’re proud to say that as we’ve grown, our community has maintained a commitment to networking and helping each other by exploring and sharing the newest technology and practical advice to bring back to their newsrooms. Whether you come from a large organization or a small newsroom, whether your interest is in breaking news or producing news for mobile, whether you identify as a digital journalist, journalism-coder, journo-entrepreneur or media diversity advocate, we have something for you.

Please enjoy these ONA14 resources — and let us know how we can help foster more training, networking and professional development in the next year and at ONA15.

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2015 James Foley Award to honor unsung heroes: conflict reporters


Video produced by Matthew Geer

All too often, it takes a searing, unthinkable image to make the public aware of the dangers a unique breed of journalists face daily. On Aug. 19, one hit particularly close to home with the brutal murder of freelance photographer Jim Foley in Syria at the hands of ISIS, after being held captive for nearly two years.

Jim’s work, like that of his colleagues’, appeared across the globe, as photos, videos or dispatches, describing the horrors of combat, the broken lives of civilians, the legacy of political decisions made far away. It’s crucial work, and, now more than ever, life-threatening. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 40 journalists have died doing their jobs in 2014 so far, covering war, corruption, crime, culture and politics in far-flung countries around the world.

The 2015 James Foley Award for Conflict Reporting, announced at the Online Journalism Awards Banquet on Sept. 27 during the Online News Association Conference in Chicago, is a step toward recognizing that work, and honoring the men and women who see it as their mission. It will be awarded next year to a digital journalist doing excellent reporting in the most challenging conditions and we’ll be formulating the criteria and selection process for the award over the next months.

When Phil Balboni, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Global Post, came to ONA with the idea of honoring Jim and his colleagues — with blessings from his parents, Diane and John Foley — we knew immediately the answer would be yes. Phil worked closely with Jim until his abduction and worked with his family to try to secure his release, and knew firsthand Jim’s dedication to his craft.

As ONA Board member and former ONA President Jim Brady said in announcing the honor, “We hope this award will keep Jim’s spirit and memory alive, and help highlight the brave and dangerous work our colleagues do so that we all may benefit.”

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Meet ONA’s MJ Bear Fellows, under-30 journalism stand-outs

The Online News Association, the world’s largest membership organization of digital journalists, today announced its fourth class of MJ Bear Fellows, three journalists under age 30 whose innovative work in independent, community and corporate news represents the best of new media.

The selection committee combed through applications from six countries to choose these up-and-coming digital journalists — two in the United States or Canada and one international, in partnership with MSN International — who are making their voices heard in the industry.

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Call for Board Nominations

Online News Association opens call for 2015 Board of Director nominations

The Online News Association is pleased to call for nominations for the six seats open for the 2015-16 Board of Directors.

Participation on the ONA Board of Directors is a unique opportunity for digital professionals to help guide the world’s largest organization of digital journalists in shaping the future of media and building a stronger industry. Board participation is a chance to grow personally and professionally, and to develop skills, experience and connections with a team of other passionate and motivated professionals.

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First round of crowdsourcing adds depth to DIY ethics code project

Crowdsourcing for the ONA Build Your Own Ethics Code project has been underway since May. Our thanks to the dozens of journalists and educators who’ve offered us really thoughtful comments. (A few people, by the way, thought that by “crowdsourcing” we were asking for money! No, we’re just looking for your equally valuable comments and critiques at http://bit.ly/onacrowdsourcing.)

To recap briefly, the project is designed to help individual journalists, news startups and even larger organizations create ethics codes that reflect their view of journalism. Think of it as an ethics code construction kit, highly flexible except for some very fundamental principles that we believe all journalists need to accept.

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Rita Allen Foundation joins Challenge Fund consortium with $200K grant

WASHINGTON, DC — A $200,000 grant from the Rita Allen Foundation will expand and strengthen the reach of a micro-grant contest run by the Online News Association (ONA), the world’s largest membership group of digital journalists. With the grant, the foundation joins the funding group behind a $1 million challenge encouraging universities to create teams that will experiment with new ways of providing news and information.

The Challenge Fund for Innovation in Journalism Education supports “live news experiments” that further the development of teaching hospital models in journalism education, in which students create innovative projects with news professionals, professors and researchers. It will produce from 15 to 25 projects during the next two years with micro-grants of as much as $35,000 each and grand prizes. The 12 winning experiments for the first round recently were announced.

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Lessons from Haiyan

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. The deadline to apply for this year’s fellowship closed on June 6. Fellow Armie Garde is assistant content editor and multimedia journalist for Sun.Star Publishing, Cebu City, Philippines.

Seven months after Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) devastated Central Philippines, killing thousands, survivors are slowly rebuilding their lives. Many things have changed, but life goes on. Hope is evident.

I have spent most of my life in Leyte, one of the storm-hit provinces, before I moved to Cebu City to study and to work eventually. Back home and in nearby Samar, Cebu and Iloilo provinces, thousands of people were killed, thousands of others were left homeless and displaced and many others are still missing even seven months after Haiyan’s devastation.

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Think Outside the (Advertising) Box

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 to apply for this year’s fellowship closed on June 6. Fellow Ashley Lohmann is a media entrepreneur and founder/director of Beyond the Bombs.

When I launched Beyond the Bombs, my multimedia platform showcasing the untold stories of the Middle East and North Africa, I had prior professional experience in the region, as well as with the media. Yet, as the platform grew, I discovered that I was missing an important skill set: business experience.

If I hoped to expand the platform further, I needed to know how to secure funding and generate revenue. I began seeking advice from anyone I could — journalists, entrepreneurs, bloggers, investors. I quickly learned about funding resources for journalists and media start-ups, but when the conversation turned to revenue generation, the advice became less clear cut.

If you are working on a media project or start-up, here are a few places to start your search for fellowships and funding: Knight Foundation, Matter., International Women’s Media Foundation, UNITY Journalists for Diversity, and International Reporting Project. Also, seek out foundations and accelerators related to the issue your project or venture addresses.

Everyone, from early-stage start-ups to media giants, is grappling with the challenge of making digital media profitable. Advertising, subscriptions, and content licensing are oft-mentioned revenue options but rarely seem sufficient. From my advice-seeking conversations, I distilled two main suggestions for generating revenue.

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Finding ‘The Line’: Young Journalists Hungry to Discuss Ethics of Editorializing

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 to apply for this year’s fellowship closed June 6. Fellow Kyle Stokes is the youth & education reporter at NPR member station KPLU in Seattle.

Recently, a group of J-school students at the University of Washington was intently, graciously listening as I bloviated about good blogging practices. Somewhere in the middle of a riff about how the best bloggers don’t wait for the perfect news peg to tell important stories — that they, in fact, set editorial calendars and post about important stuff simply because it’s important — a hand in the back of the room shot up.

“You’re talking about setting an agenda. Isn’t what you’re describing editorializing?” an incisive student interjected. “How do you know when you’re crossing that line?”

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Social Media Evolution: Coordinating Disaster Response

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. The deadline to apply for this year’s fellowship closed on June 6. Fellow Armie Garde is assistant content editor and multimedia journalist for Sun.Star Publishing, Cebu City, Philippines.

Social media platforms have turned into powerful tools for creating online communities to keep people informed and promote unanimity, especially during disaster response.

The Philippines experienced two major natural disasters in 2013, the magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Bohol October 15 and Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) on November 8.

Critical information about the damage caused by the quake, along with a few photos of its impact, were posted first on social media. Further, the Bohol Quake Assistance Facebook page provides an example of how social media is being used to monitor rehabilitation efforts in areas badly affected by the earthquake. It publishes photos of disaster response initiatives, such as the distribution of donations from local and international donors. It even includes photos of livelihood rebuilding ideas to help victims cope up with the economic impact of disaster.

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