Google Tools training for journalists coming to Knoxville

SPJ Training Program in association with Google News Initiative
SPJ Training Program in association with Google News Initiative

Don’t miss an upcoming free training opportunity in Knoxville for journalists.

The East Tennessee chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is bringing SPJ’s Google Tools training to town on Saturday, June 2.

The four-hour session begins at 10 a.m. at the Scripps Lab, 1345 Circle Park Drive, on the University of Tennessee campus.

While free, registration is required. Sign up here: https://bit.ly/2IJ1cCR

Participants need to bring a laptop and phone to the session.

SPJ Trainer Mike Reilley
SPJ Trainer Mike Reilley, founder of SPJ’s Journalists Toolbox.

The instructor will be Mike Reilley, founder of SPJ’s Journalists Toolbox, a treasure-trove of journalism resources.

Reilley (@journtoolbox) is a visiting professor in data journalism and digital journalism at the University of Illinois-Chicago and is a consultant to national media organizations on digital innovation.

This innovative training is made possible by the Google News Initiative and the Society of Professional Journalists.

The Google News Initiative partnered with SPJ in 2015 to teach Google digital tools for news and storytelling at conferences, workshops and newsrooms across the country. Google and SPJ are committed to training as many journalists as possible.

This intensive course will help make you be a better digital journalist, teaching you how to take advantage of Internet sources for researching court cases, public data and news archives, among other sources. It is designed to improve the efficiency and efficacy of your in-depth research.

Here is an outline for the course.

10 a.m. to 10:55 a.m.: Google basics, Google Trends, Google Reverse Image Search and verification tools, Google Scholar. Fun with Google AutoDraw.com and what else is coming in AI with Google Lens.

11 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.: Deep Dive Google MyMaps. Data scraping with Google Sheets, scraping .PDFs with Tabula. Google Public Data Explorer

12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m.: Lunch and learn: Mobile reporting tools, including Google Cardboard Camera and Google Streetview app.

1 p.m. to 2 p.m.: Google Earth Pro, Earth Engine Timelapse tool, Street View.

Have questions? Email me at jack@jacklail.com

The music business is back; are there clues for news?

The music business has been growing for the last few years after going into a decline in 1999. And it doesn’t have to do with buying MP3s .

The news and music industries have long been compared; they were disrupted by the Internet at about the same time and forever changed.

Are there still lessons to be learned between the two industries. Would a “Spotify model” work for news? Some efforts have been tried and failed from traditional media companies, the tech powers that control the platforms and entrepreneurial startups.

Music Sales by format

Diversity Scholarships for APME NewsTrain at MTSU

Can’t beat this deal!

Journalists, journalism educators and journalism students from diverse backgrounds are invited to apply for a diversity scholarship to attend the Murfreesboro NewsTrain.

Successful applicants for these competitive awards will have their registration fee waived; they must pay their own travel expenses.

Apply by Aug. 25 by answering these questions and emailing your resume and up to three work samples and/or class assignments to Val Hoeppner, director of MTSU’s Center for Innovation in Media. Journalism educators need not submit work samples.

The NewsTrain is Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2016.

When online comments go #MoreThanMean

The podcast “Just Not Sports” tackles the abuse and harassment women sports writers face in online comments with a video of “regular guy” sports fans reading comments to two women sports journalists.

Here is what a post on the podcast’s website said about the video:

#MoreThanMean hopes to open guys’ eyes – by having them open their mouths. The video shows what happens when real sports fans read real online comments made about women sports reporters … right to their faces.

In reading the statements out loud to women journalists, guys are forced to experience, sometimes for the first time, the shocking online harassment happening to women in sports day in, day out. It serves as proof most sports fans would NEVER say these things to another person – so we shouldn’t type this garbage, either.

Posted April 26, 2016, the video went viral, being seen by 3.15 millions times by Sunday.

Listen to one of the sports journalists in the video, Julie DiCaro, talking about online abuse.

There’s The ‘Web We Want’ and the web we’ve got

The Guardian is trying to bring “The Web Web Want” and the web we’ve got closer together in one of the most indepth looks at the negative issues of online comments and how to fix it in a series called “The Web We Want.”

The Guardian says it gets 50,000 comments a day, sometimes spiking up to 70,000 a day. It’s asking readers for ideas on how to make online conversations — or at least commenting — better.

Below, NPR’s Audie Cornish speaks with the Guardian’s series editor Becky Gardiner and writer Nesrine Malik about the effort.

Social media drives traffic, but the prize is direct users

Referral traffic to news sites

Facebook is an important source of website referrals for many news outlets, but the users who arrive via Facebook spend far less time and consume far fewer pages than those who arrive directly. The same is true of users arriving by search. Our analysis of comScore data found visitors who go to a news media website directly spend roughly three times as long as those who wind up there through search or Facebook, and they view roughly five times as many pages per month. This higher level of engagement from direct visitors is evident whether a site’s traffic is driven by search or social sharing and it has big implications for news organizations who are experimenting with digital subscriptions while endeavoring to build a loyal audience.

Great piece by the Pew Research Center on “How social media is reshaping news.”

(Image from Pew Research Center)

 

The old and the new

The old knoxnews (a design in use for just over seven years) and the new design, launched July 22, 2014. The old site was on the “Ellington” platform; the new one uses “Endplay.” What’s up with the German ads? We use a screenshot service whose ip addresses are in Germany.

(Click on the image for a larger view.)

old-new.png

The cheerleader, The Dirty and the court case that could change the Internet forever

CheerleaderLibelLaw2l.jpg

The fate of a law that was passed in the infancy of the commercial Internet and which created the legal underpinnings for everything from anonymous comments by trolls on news stories to your pet photo on Facebook was argued today in the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati.

The case involves a defamation lawsuit by a former Cincinnati Benglas cheerleader against a gossip website.  The cheerleader, Sarah Jones, sued gossip site The Dirty in 2012 claiming allegations on its site about her sex life were untrue. A Federal jury awarded Jones $338,000.

In the appeal heard today, The Dirty’s attorneys argued the case should have never been heard because the Communications Decency Act of 1996 grants immunity to websites from content posted by users.

“If Judge Bertelsman’s ruling stands, the Internet will have a nuclear meltdown,” Arizona attorney David Gingras said. “It’ll change the rules across the board for everyone. … Mark Zuckerberg could be dragged into court for what users post on Facebook.”

While that quote is more than a bit of hyperbole, the case is being closely watched by web content firms who say upholding the lower court ruling would  “significantly chill online speech” . Read more.

Photo caption: This Monday, July 30, 2012 file photo shows Sarah Jones, a former Dixie Heights High School teacher and Cincinnati Ben-Gal cheerleader, arriving at the Kenton County Justice Center, in Covington, Kentucky. An appeals court is considering whether an Arizona-based gossip website should have been allowed to be sued for defamation by Jones, convicted of having sex with a teenager. Attorneys for both sides argued their case Thursday, May 1, 2014 before the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/The Enquirer, Patrick Reddy, File)