The attendance at the early morning panel on Friday reflected it might be hard to find passion for anything at 8:30 a.m.
But passion being the key ingredient to this session, journalists trudged through their morning haze (and perhaps a hangover, courtesy of Yahoo!).
Those who did make it were rewarded with feedback from panelists offering suggestions on blending passion with solid reporting to produce appealing blogs.
Amber MacArthur, new media specialist at CityNews, communicates with podcasts, videos, blogs and news stories. Each medium, she said, may require a different approach, but ultimately a reporter's message needs consistency.
"Truly find what you're passionate about and find your voice through that," MacArthur said.
Dan Froomkin, washingtonpost.com's White House Watch columnist and the panel's moderator, said this is the time to grab audience's attention through engaging stories.
Rick Hancock (Photo by Aaron Roberts)
"There are risks involved in opinion, but basically without it you are trying to create a risk-free newsroom and no one cares about that any more," he said.
Hancock said he is frustrated when he comes to conferences and hears that journalists still don't "get it." Now is the time when media has to be prepared to engage with audiences, he said, and one way to do this is through appealing stories.
Jay Rosen of New York University addressed the panel and audience with one tip: Start a blog and you’ll become more valuable to your organization because of the user interaction. Rosen added it could save your job -- and others in the room nodded their heads in agreement.