NYFA Broadcast Journalism School 4th of July Weekly Update

Here in New York, we’re in the middle of an extended Independence Day holiday. However, given that many of you reading this aren’t in New York (or even the United States), here is the latest edition of the Weekly Update. (And for those of you just getting to work after a long weekend, “Happy Wednesday.”)

Google, which wants to challenge Facebook as the “go to” source for digital news has taken another step to insure what it promotes as “news” actually is “news.” They undertook a major redesign of the Google News site, which not only streamlined the look (so it works better on mobile devices) but also gives more prominence to fact-checking. In part, they are looking to crowd-source accuracy as well as clearly identify the publishers behind the information you are seeing.

(I’m old-fashioned, in that I think actual people have better editorial judgement than algorithms. Then again, I subscribe to not one but two newspapers.)

BTW, did you ever notice how this Weekly Update has lots of “where space?” Better for mobile…

Google News redesign

These days, the term Broadcast Journalism encompasses a wide range of platforms including legacy (“linear”) media along with an ever-growing array of digital outlets. It’s easy to forget that the first examples of Broadcast Journalism were found on radio, and that radio (now reborn thanks to podcasts) continues to be a great source of engaging content.

One of my favorites is Studio 360, which for years was based at public radio station WNYC here in New York. WNYC is shifting its emphasis to in-house productions, so the producers of Studio 360 went looking for a new partner. They found it in the on-line journal Slate. Part of what makes this relationship so interesting is that it brings together two of the older outlets of “new journalism.” Both have been around for more than a decade, which is a considerable achievement in an era when some platforms struggle to survive a few months, then succumb to a sea of “red ink.” (In bookkeeping, losses are written in red, profits in black.) You need more than compelling content succeed. You have to figure out a way to monetize your concept.

Studio 360 Slate

Those of you who have already attended NYFA know that one of the things we discuss is the transition from “broadcasting” to “narrowcasting,” as media platforms seek to reach niche audiences. Digiday had a nice posting on how Atlantic Media’s CityLab is looking to turn a profit reaching those involved in urban policymaking and development. One of the great secrets in our craft is how there is always a need for talented multimedia journalists in organizations that reach audiences most of us never realized existed.

CityLab

For many years, my production company created news packages and mini-documentaries for an in-house news program produced by Johnson & Johnson, the global pharmaceutical and consumer products company. In fact, it was thanks to J&J that I traveled across China, setting the stage for my many documentary projects there. One of my favorite projects, Sichuan Stories, took me to rural Sichuan province to report on recovery efforts following a devastating earthquake.

Sichuan Stories

Last week Spring 1-Year students Yvonne Camara and Odera Okapu made their debut as co-anchors of the latest edition of NYFA News. And while we don’t do the program with smoke and mirrors, we do use a green screen effect. Yvonne is from France, while Odera is from New York by way of Nigeria. The show’s producer is from Croatia. Talk about a global production staff!

Control Room 6-29-17

Our graduates are working around the world too. Recently short-term workshop graduate Alexandra Vidal was covering a Joaquin Sabina concert at the WiZink Center in Madrid. It looks like she was having fun. (Plus, if you are with “the media,” you get to go to concerts for free. Yes, you have to produce a story, but I can think of worse places to work…

Alexandra Vidal @ Wizink Center

Meanwhile, in Italy, NYFA grad Giordano Locchi told me he is now working at Adnkronos, a national news agency based in Rome. (He promised to send me some of his stories.) And while is certainly doing well, he adds “…I really miss New York.”

 

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Published on: July 5, 2017

Filled Under: Academic Programs, Broadcast Journalism

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