Archives for posts with tag: ideas

Someone once said the first rule of blogging is to do it regularly. The second is not to begin with an apology if you go silent without a heads up.

Screw the rules.

The Times of South Africa Newsroom by Gregor Rohrig

For the last few weeks, I’ve been asking a lot of people how news organizations can do a better job of providing and being a conduit for information and discussion while making enough money to sustain a business.

That last part is probably the most difficult question to answer. Most recently, media consultant Michael Rosenblum urged media companies to come up with a new business model for the realities of today.

Apparently, media CEOs were stymied. But there are examples out there:

David Cohn has proposed community-funded reporting and runs Spot.us, the live test. ProPublica uses the non-profit model to pay for investigative reporting. The Guardian in Britain is set up as a public trust.

So I ask you: what should we be doing to ensure there will be money to pay for the labor-intensive craft of news gathering?

Leave a comment below or send me your ideas. If the CEOs don’t know where to start, maybe we, the online collective can show the way.

I’ve been talking with people in social media, information visualization, grassroots reporting and news companies. I’ve wanted to talk with media buyers as well, but don’t have contacts. Do you?

Not related, but possibly useful to you: Thanks to the organizers of Capitolbeat, I was a conference panelist on a session about online fact checking with UNC assistant professor Andy Bechtel and staff reporter Taft Wireback of the News & Record in Greensboro, N.C. (You’ll find the links on my Delicious page.)

Photo: The (South Africa) Times newsroom by Gregor Rohrig/Flickr

One of the brilliant things about the Web is that a story can be told many different ways. Earlier this year, British publisher Penguin Group asked six authors to each create an online homage to a notable work of literature. Each tale used a different aspect of Web storytelling as the medium. The result was We Tell Stories.


One tale is told through a map with an embedded Easter egg that leads to a seventh story inspired by “Alice in Wonderland.” (First clue andfull spoiler.)

Another work is designed as an infographic, courtesy of Nicolas Felton, whose annual report has won him fans around the world.

A third is an interactive write-your-own-adventure.

There are six stories on the site. Say what you want about the quality of the writing, but the methods offer a sampling of different ways to engage readers.

After “We Tell Stories” launched, Gamasutra interviewed the project leads, Six To Start, and a representative from Penguin who said the company was excited about creating “a really immersive and engaging storytelling experience.”

When writing for the Web, think about all the ways in which your story can be told. There’s text, of course, but there are pictures, still and moving. Stir in audio, databases and maps, and suddenly there are a rich variety of ways to be pulled into a tale.

Actor and activist Tim Robbins was opening keynote speaker at the recent National Association of Broadcasters conference. An interesting choice, for sure.

When the time came, Robbins balked, according to an AdAge report.

After a bit of confusion, Robbins took the stage and gave a speech that entertained the audience before delivering a thrashing.

Here, in its entirety, is the speech.

(via Paper Tiger TV)

Steve Outing, “Stop the Presses” columnist and online media consultant just launched a new site aimed at those looking for ideas to increase news website readership and make money.

Not all of Outing’s recommendations are earthshaking, but the comments will probably prove to be the true goldmine.

On a post about showing the numbers associated with “most emailed” stories to show weight and scale in addition to popularity, commenter Dave Bullard notes that the numbers are also a form of audience approval. Bullard writes:

“Perhaps you find a place on the home page for comments from readers, as in, ‘This is a great resource! Beats the paper six ways to Sunday. Keep up the good work!’

“Rotate those comments, and reinforce them by sending the commenter a little piece of branded swag.”

The editorial side might hate it, but think about the last time you went to a movie because your newspaper’s reviewers gave it a thumbs up.

Get in on the ground floor and join in the discussions.

TED, the elite meeting of big thinkers in a wide variety of fields, including media and technology, has put one ticket up for auction on Ebay. As of this post, the bid is $33,535.00.

The normal cost of entry is an invitation and at least $6,000. Though the conference has a good reputation as a place to be inspired and to make influential contacts, I ask you: What meeting is worth more than five times the normal cost?

Perhaps this is all the more reason to look to not-so-glittery gatherings, such as unconferences like PodCamp, and Good Experience Live.