Monthly Archives: March 2011

Online News – Multimedia Slideshow Pitch

A Day in the Life of Johnno/Pixie Darling

Ella Fisher, Michael Minns and I want to follow Johnno alias Pixie Darling for a day. To see him changing from being Johnno, who works at Bing Lee, to drag queen Pixie Darling.

This is a human interest story. We haven’t really found a very newsworthy angle yet but we’re hoping to get there when we talk to Johnno/Pixie Darling.

Our plan is to capture both pictures and video when we’re out in the field. We definitely want to use colour pictures and video, not black and white shots.

Creator MikeBlogs

For the audio we’re planning to use interviews with Johnno/Pixie Darling and we may use some music if we can get hold of something without copyright issues.

We want to make a fun and exciting multimedia slideshow with lots of colourful pictures, and maybe some video. There are too many boring slidshows out there. We feel like we need to change this, and show the world that slidshows can be funny and entertaining.

Ella and I went to Gender Bender at University of Canberra a few weeks ago where we met Pixie Darling. We knew drag queens were going to attend and preform at Gender Bender but Pixie Darling just blew us away.

When we met her she asked if we had a microphone she could use, so she could interview people walking the red carpet. The red carpet was a blanket next to the door when you walked in. So not very exciting. But when Pixie Darling got a microphone it suddenly turned interesting.

She asked everyone what they were wearing, hit on guys (dressed as girls of course), posed in pictured and just had a blast. The event went from boring to awesome.

Pixie Darling was very open and outspoken, so I think she will be a great talent for our slideshow. I have a good feeling about this.

Pixie Darling on the Red Carpet

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Sports Journalism – Reflection on the radio show production

I really enjoyed making radio shows in our tutorials. It was a learning process to write scrips and select grabs under time pressure.

I still feel like I have a way to go when it comes to working under time pressure, especially when I have to write in English (second language barrier). It’s just hard to find the right word sometimes when you get stressed.

It was a good experience to be part of the production of a radio show. You don’t really think about all the preparation that is involved in the production process. To be able to experience this at uni before we get thrown out in the real world is great.

I didn’t get to experience the role as presenter but I got a chance to be the technical producer. It was a lot of fun. You don’t really think about the people behind the scene. But they are just as important as the presenters of radio and TV shows.

I think I prefer being in the background. You may not get as much attention as the presenter but I think I like it that way. I get enough attention in my life. I don’t need any more.

Creator: Martin Ehrenhauser

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Sports Journalism – Reflection on radio stories

1st Story

My first story was in an “Q and A” format. My research for this story was not good enough. I started too late to figure out what I wanted to do and ended up with covering a pre-season game between Canberra FC and Sutherland Sharks from Sydney.

On the Wednesday before the game I sent the president of Canberra FC an email enquiring about doing interviews with the coach and players after the game. The club replied and said it was fine for me to come along.

But when I got there on the weekend and the game was finished, which Canberra FC lost 2-3. None of the players were keen on talking to me. The coach was a good sport though and answered my questions.

Canberra FC (red & white) v Sutherland Sharks (blue & white) at Deakin Stadium in Canberra

Since none of the players was talking to me I had to improvise and change my story angle. So I interviewed the Sharks’ coach. I had to do this unprepared and it didn’t turn out too good because I didn’t think about the UCFM’s audience when I was doing the interview. A local audience doesn’t care about what expectations a Sydney team has for their season in Sydney. They want to know what the Sydney coach thinks about Canberra FC, their local team.

What I have learnt from this is that things don’t always go as planned, so you may have to improvise and think on your feet. This means you should always be prepared for making changes, and you should always think about what your audience wants.

2nd Story

My second story was a package about the new leadership program Capital Football has developed for women. This story was much better than my first one.

Why? Because I started earlier and my talents were excellent. Good research + good talents = good story.

My script was alright but I didn’t have enough background on the program at the start of my script. Sometimes when I write I forget that my audience don’t know everything that I do. So I have to be better at explaining things and not assume that the audience know everything I do.

Other than that I just have to work on how I express myself when I write English. My English isn’t bad but sometimes I know that I could write sentences differently and they would sound better. But in that moment I can’t think of how. It can be really frustrating.

In the end, the only thing I can do is to keep writing. After all, you don’t improve if you don’t keep trying.

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Online News – The changing role of the journalist

The news environment is changing and so are the role if journalists. New news formats are emerging and news organizations must deliver their content on multiple platforms to be able to cater for their audience. It’s been a move in society from ‘offer-focused demand’ to ‘demand-focused production’. This means that earlier the media organizations had the power and could produce what they thought was “the best” content. But now, this has changed and the consumers are the once in charge and the media organizations have to cater for their consumers’ needs and wishes.

Media Platforms

Creator Asthma Helper

A more active audience has emerged from this changing news environment. Consumers don’t just want to read the news anymore, a lot of them also want to comment on the news they are consuming. They want to engage in a more active way than earlier. Many use their mobile phones to comment either on news websites or via Twitter and Facebook.

Blogs are another good example of how the news audience has changed from being passive to becoming active. Many non-professional journalists as well as professional journalists blogs. They comment on the current issues that is important to them. Grog’s Gamut is an example of a blog like this, written by a public servant in Australia. Here is an other example of a blog but this is written by a Sydney Morning Herald property journalist.

The role of the journalist is increasingly becoming more of a assisting role in the publishing process. Often journalists have to facilitate and assist media users, so they can produce content for them. More and more journalists are only putting together content received from their audience. Some journalists don’t even producing content themselves anymore. They have more of an editing role in the whole production process. A good example of audience generated content is ABC OPEN.

Sky News has a TV news service called Sky News Active which they launched in 2004. This was the world’s first interactive TV news service. It has eight different screens which each covers a subject like sport, news, showbiz, weather etc.

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Champions League – Manchester United through to Quarter-finals

Manchester United has reached the Champions League quarter-finals after defeating Marseille 2-1 on Old Trafford. After the  0-0 game in Marseille on 23 February United needed to win on home soil to reach the quarter-final stage. Javier Hernandez help United to do just that by scoring twice in the crucial match at Old Trafford.

The ABC reports that Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez scored for United only 5 minutes into the game. He put the ball behind Marseille’s goalkeeper Steve Mandanda for the second time in the 75th minute. United’s Wes Brown was unlucky and headed an own goal with only eight minutes left of the game.

Watch Brown’s own goal in this YouTube video.

Brown’s own goal gave United a nervy ending, according to Marsielle only needed a goal and they would be the team to reach the quarter-finals instead of United. But Sir Alex Ferguson’s men held on to secure a place in the quarter-finals for the fifth year in a row.

“United manager Alex Ferguson bemoaned the loss of defenders John O’Shea and Rafael da Silva to hamstring injuries during the match”, according to the ABC. Ferguson said losing two defenders in the match upset his team’s balance.

But Ferguson was very happy with how Javier Hernandez and Wayne Rooney combined in attack for United. Fergie told The Sun that Rooney is a real threat in his new position behind Hernandez. “Hernandez is unbelievable with his movement – the boy has goals in him”, said Fergie.

Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez was named man of the match by after a brilliant preformance. He threatened  Marseille’s defence through the whole game and scored the two goals for the Red Devils.

Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez










Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney said to The Sun that United fear no one in Friday’s Champions League quarter-finals draw. Rooney goes on by saying that he is confident United will win whoever they meet in the next round.

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Online News – From the ‘Inverted Pyramid’ to ‘The News Diamond’

The online news environment and the print news environment are different. Paul Bradshaw saw this and thought of a new editorial process for writing a story in the online environment.

Creator: The Online Journalism Blog

Bradshaw based his model on the two main attributes on the Internet, speed and depth. On the Internet give you the opportunity to publish news faster. Just think about all the news websites online, they usually have a column for breaking news. But at the same time the Internet is a medium that potentially can make journalism broader and deeper.

The news diamond is better suited for today’s interactive journalism than the traditional inverted pyramid. In the 19th century writing news was producing an article, while today it’s more of a process. The 21st century journalists usually update their story several times, so it’s an ongoing process. As Bradshaw said the 21st century news story is “forever unfinished”.

If you want to know more about the news diamond have a look at Bradshaw’s post here.

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Online News – Writing online news stories

Writing online news stories and writing news stories for print are similar techniques. But there are a few differences between the two.

Creator RambergMediaImages

In online news writing it is really important to include links in your news stories. This makes your story more credible, and it makes it easier for the reader by making other relevant information easy to access. You should use hyperlinks as a kind of attribution to what you’re writing. If readers can see where you got your information it makes your story more credible.

Here is an example of linking. Jonathan Dube’s have written an article on this topic, called “Writing News Online“. In point 11 he says, “do not fear the link”. Which means you shouldn’t be afraid of linking. Linking is a really important part of online writing.

Another thing you should think about when writing news stories for online publication is that your audience can come from many different places. What I mean by that is that your readers may not only come to your story by the front page of the website where your story is published. They could come to your story by a link on twitter or facebook or some other website. So think about this when you write.

Creator urlesque

You should also think about the length of your story when writing online news stories. A webpage can be as long as you like but will your readers still be interested if the story is too long. There is a saying, “too long, didn’t read” when it comes to online stories. Many shorten this to ‘tl;dr’.

So your story shouldn’t be too long but it should definitely make use different kinds of multimedia. Videos, pictures, maps and other multimedia materials should give the readers of your story more information. This gives the story more context.

It’s also important to think about how you write your headline. Your headline has to clearly tell what your story is about. This is essential if you want people to read your story because if they search in google they use key words, and if these key words are not in your headline your story won’t show up in people’s google searches. So make a note of this.

Use active verbs when you write. It will make the story more compelling to readers. You may have to rewrite your story but it’s worth it if the readers have a good experience when reading your story.

Also think about the format of your story. You can highlight words that you want your readers to pay attention to. It’s also important to use subheading to break up the story.  Your paragraphs should be short. Two or three sentences are GOOD.

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Online News – THE ROAR

The Roar is a online-only outlet. It is a sports opinion site for professionals and non-professionals. Anyone can send in an article to The Roar for publication, but not all get published. The Roar also have its own writers or experts, as they call them, who publish articles/columns regularly.

Australia vs Kuwait

The website has two main columns; one with articles from The Roar experts, and one with articles from the crowd which can be anyone with an opinion about sports. On top of these two columns they have different sports categories, which makes it easier to navigate the site. They have also used different colours on the headlines of the two main columns to make it easier to distinguish between the two.

Comparing The Roar, an online-only outlet, with offline outlets or mixed online/offline outlets

The Roar is an opinion site only so it’s not that easy to compare it to other outlets, because most other outlets has a mixture of stories and not only opinion pieces. But I will try anyway.

The first thing that caught my eye when I went through a few sports news websites, like Fox Sports, Sky Sports and ESPN, was that they all had a box up the top with their top story/stories. This is something that The Roar is missing. I think, if you put one or a few stories in a box on top of your website, it’s easier to draw people in to the site.

All of the four websites has an add at the top of their page, so there is no difference there. They are all trying to get their revenue from advertisers.

The American outlets,  Sky Sports and ESPN, have a shorter front page than the two Australian outlets. The Roar has the longest front page with a lot of different opinion pieces packed underneath each other in the two main columns. Fox Sports has categories of different sports at the top as Sky Sports and ESPN but still feel the need to have the same categories underneath their top story box, which makes their front page longer. Is this necessary? I don’t really think so, but I think some people prefer it that way.

I look at sporting websites with new eyes after learning how to set up my own blog in Online News. It’s very interesting how just a tiny thing like a box with top stories can make a big difference to a website.

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Oslo 2011

The World Championship in Oslo is over after 11 days with cross country skiing, ski jumping and Nordic combined (cross country skiing & ski jumping).

Norway ended up at the top of the medal tally with 20 medals; 8 gold, 6 silver and 6 bronze.

Norway 8 6 6 20
Austria 7 2 1 10
Sweden 2 2 1 5
Germany 1 4 3 8
Finland 1 1 2 4
France 1 0 1 2
Canada 1 0 0 1
Poland 0 2 2 4
Russia 0 2 2 4
Italy 0 2 0 2
Slovenia 0 0 2 2
Switzerland 0 0 1 1

Source: Oslo2011

Has Oslo 2011 been a success?

The World Championship had its starting problems with a traffic chaos on Saturday, February 26. But it learnt from it, and the rest of the championship ran perfectly.

The attendance at the championship has been higher than expected, although on some days the weather let the spectators down and it was hard to see anything. This shows how much Norwegians love cross country skiing, ski jumping and the combination of the two. And the questions running through my mine in this moment is:

Should Norway bid to host another Winter Olympic Games?

It’s a lot of costs involved in hosting the Olympic Games. But it was a lot of money involved in hosting the World Championship too. Did Norway get anything back for the money they spent on the championship? Most of the viewers and spectators were Norwegian and Swedish. The FIS World Championship doesn’t get the coverage around the world as the Winter Olympic Games get. Maybe Norway would have been better off by not hosting the FIS World Championship but instead bid for hosting the Winter Olympic Games. Just a thought!

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UEFA wants a 5-referee system at Euro 2012

UEFA President Michel Platini wants to introduce a 5-referee system at Euro 2012 to avoid controversial dicisions on the field.

UEFA has tried this system in the Europa League for a few years now, which Platini says has been a success.

Platini said that he is 500 per cent happy with how this system has worked in the Europa League and that the referees are happy with the system as well.

It’s not decided yet if Platini and UEFA’s 5-referee system will be used at the Euro 2012. This will most likely be decided on the weekend when UEFA are meeting with FIFA’s International Football Association Board (IFAB).

Platini said that he has suggested to use a 5-referee system to the IFAB earlier but got turned down. This time he is hoping to get a positive answer from the IFAB.

But do we need 5-referees?

In my opinion we don’t. We should use video technology instead. By using video technology on the goal-line, and to see if the ball is on or off the pitch, we can move the referees from the sidelines to the pitch. This way we can divide the pitch into 3 zones where each of the 3 referees covers one zone.

My zone-divided football pitch

My zone-divided football pitch







This means that there is no longer just 1 referee covering the whole pitch, pretty much, by himself/herself. Now, he/she will have two other referees on the pitch to help him/her. Each referee has the authority to make decisions in their area, but the referee in the middle have the last say when necessary.

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