Thursday, September 25, 2008

Rob Curley reports from the front of new journalism

Many wondered why new media visionary Rob Curley would leave the prestigious Washington Post, one of the pillars of old journalism, for the Las Vegas Sun, a little upstart in the desert.

He explained why in a blog post last week.

"I’m more and more convinced every day that the Las Vegas Sun is the most interesting local newspaper in the nation — both to read and to work at," he wrote. For details read the post.

Mindy McAdams offered her thoughts on Why the Las Vegas Sun is So Great in a series of blog posts earlier that week.

Students trying to make a great local newspaper for their university communities can take lessons from the Sun. Go hyperlocal and use multimedia and interactivity to the max. The readers will follow.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Student Political Journalism Junkies to Meet in DC

The Institute on Political Journalism invites students to attend "Election 2008: The Press, the Presidency & Politicians," a two-day conference for collegiate journalists in the nation's capital.

The Institute of Political Journalism is an arm of The Fund for American Studies, which was founded in 1967 "to help instill in young people an appreciation for the American form of government and the free enterprise system. TFAS sponsors Institutes that teach college students about the principles and values upon which the United States was founded."

Organizers of the conference promise opportunities for students to hone their professional skills, network with working journalists and meet fellow journalism students from across the county.

Panel sessions will include:
  • Covering Capitol Hill: The Story behind the story
  • Media Bias in Presidential Elections: Say it isn't so!
  • Sex, Lies, & Slander: Misbehaving politicians & the press who covers them
  • Covering the Campaign of 08': View from the press bus
  • Live from the White House!: Reporters who cover the President
  • Only the Facts Please: Rumors versus sources
  • Reporting with Polls: What the numbers don't tell us
  • Report Card on the Press: How well were economic & business issues covered
This conference will provide opportunities for collegiate journalists to:
  • Get a quick, affordable two day dose of political journalism
  • Hear from experienced journalists from Politico, Fox News, USA Today, The Washington Post and more
  • Network with students journalists from all over the country
  • Meet potential employers
  • Visit Washington's new NEWSEUM
  • Tour the U.S. Capitol Building
  • Soak up the sights and sounds of the nation's capital

The conference is open to college students with an interest in journalism and politics as well as faculty members or media advisers.

The conference registration fee of $75 includes conference sessions, materials and most meals. Participants requiring overnight accommodations will be charged the discounted room rate of $75 per person per night (double occupancy) and $150 per person per night (single occupancy). People who register by Oct. 1 will receive a discount of $25 off the registration fee and $25 per night off the hotel fees. The final deadline to register is Oct. 14.

The conference will take place at The Liaison Capitol Hill, in Washington, D.C.

Registration is limited. Register here.

For more information on the conference, contact Joe Starrs, IPJ Director at or 202.986.0384.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Column: Old media and new clash at NYU

Alana Taylor, a plugged-in, media-savvy, blogging journalism student at New York University, has an interesting column on PBS' MediaShift critiquing the old-school journalism education she's getting at the venerable journalism school.

Taylor, a junior, is taking a class called “Reporting Gen Y (a.k.a. Quarterlifers),” which she says is one of the few new media classes offered at the school. When the teacher asked if anyone in the class had a blog, Taylor was the only one to raise her hand.

"It comes as a shock to me that the students in a class about 'how our generation is very much invested in the Internet' are not actually as involved," she writes.

Taylor is openly critical of her school for its emphasis on old-school journalism -- for focusing on magazines and newspapers and requiring students to bring The New York Times to class every day. "What is so fascinating about the move from print to digital is the freedom to be your own publisher, editor, marketer, and brand," Taylor writes. "But, surprisingly, NYU does not offer the kinds of classes I want. It continues to focus its core requirements around learning how to work your way up the traditional journalism ladder."

Nearly as interesting as Taylor's blog are the comments it elicits. Check out the piece and add to the discussion.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Online News Association hosts job fair in DC

The Online News Association's 2008 conference in Washington, DC, will feature a job fair on Thursday, Sept. 11 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The job fair at the Capitol Hilton is a great opportunity for student journalists to network with professionals and learn about career opportunities in media. Among the companies that are scheduled to attend are NPR, Gannett and Tribune Media Services.

The day will begin with short presentations from the recruiters about their companies; interviews will take place throughout the day.

Registration is required. Admission for ONA members is free; students who are not ONA members, $25; professionals and other non-ONA members, $50. Recruiters can sign up for $250.00

You can register for the job fair here

If you have any questions, contact Acting Executive Director Tom Regan at

Update: Arrested student photographers released

The two University of Kentucky student photographers and photo adviser who were arrested on suspicion of rioting outside the Republican National Convention Monday were released without being charged Wednesday, according to an article in the Kentucky Kernel, the student newspaper.

Student photographers Ed Matthews and Britney McIntosh and Kernel photo adviser Jim Winn were detained for two nights at the Ramsey County Adult Detention Center in St. Paul, Minn. They were released without being charged with a crime but an investigation is continuing.

The two student photographers are on the staff of the Kentucky Kernel but they were not covering the Republican National Convention for the paper.

Read more about it at the Minneapolis Star-Tribune,, the Lexington Herald-Leader and the Louisville Courier-Journal.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Kentucky Kernal photogs arrested at RNC

Two student photographers and the photo adviser for the Kentucky Kernel were arrested at the Republican National Convention Monday in St. Paul, Minn., on charges of felony rioting while photographing a protest outside the convention, according to the University of Kentucky newspaper.

Photographers Ed Matthews, a senior at the University of Kentucky, and Britney McIntosh, a sophomore, and adviser Jim Winn were three of 286 people arrested during protests at the convention, the Kentucky Kernel reported.

The two photographers were not on assignment for the newspaper but were documenting the convention on their own, according to Editor in Chief Brad Luttrell. The Kernel decided not to cover the Republican National Convention because it had not covered the Democratic National Convention.

For more coverage of the students' arrest see reports by the Louisville Courier-Journal and the Herald-Leader.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Daily Reveille offers model hurricane coverage

If you want a great example of how a student newspaper can cover a major breaking news story as it unfolds, just check out The Daily Reveille at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.

The newspaper is covering every angle of Hurricane Gustav, from the arrival of U.S. Army and National Guard units to the booming business at the local Domino's pizza restaurant. The staff has redesigned the newspaper's home pages so that all the news "above the fold" focuses on Gustav.

Pat Parish, associate director of the LSU Student Media Office, said the radio, TV and newspaper staffs "are doing a lot of new things this fall that really exploit the possibilities of online. For Gustav, their goal is to own the LSU angle."

Much of the staff is camped out in the Student Media offices, Parish wrote in a post the College Media Advisers listserv. "It's a good sturdy building -- with upper floors to flee to, if the levee should break!"

Parish herself is microblogging the storm on Twitter. You can follow her posts at SouthLousiana.

The newspaper's Web site offers truly comprehensive coverage of the hurricane, making use not just of its own staff but campus and national resources. Coverage includes:
  • Frequent news updates (posted all through the night)
  • A live video stream showing the storm
  • A link to the National Hurricane Center's hurricane tracking map
  • A hurricane blog
  • A link to the LSU Hurricane Alert Center
  • A list of closures on campus
  • A special multimedia section with videos about the storm.
  • A poll asking readers if they have evacuated.

The Daily Reveille's coverage offers a model other student newspapers dealing with a major news event can turn to.