Monthly Archives: April 2011

Online News – Gender Bender Slideshow

As we started to edit audio and pictures for our slideshow it became obvious to us that our angle wasn’t very newsworthy. So we decided to make the slideshow about the event Gender Bender instead of Johnno Davis alias Pixie Darling.

After hours of editing we were all happy with the result and here it is.

Description: The University of Canberra hosted ‘Gender Bender’ with a red carpet entry and drag shows increasing student acceptance and diversity of different sexual orientations.

Slideshow Interview

Yesterday, 29 April 2011, Michael, Ella and I drove to a suburb in Canberra called Kambah to interview our slideshow talent.

Our talent is Johnno Davis alias Pixie Darling. Johnno explained to us that he is gay, not transsexual, and when he gets dressed up as Pixie Darling he is playing a role.

He told us that he first started performing as Pixie Darling a year ago. Jacqueline Hyde is Pixie Darling’s ‘drag mother’. A ‘drag mother’ is a person “who indoctrinates a young…drag queen in the ways of femininity”.

Johnno doesn’t do drag shows that often. He is a perfectionist so when he does drag show he wants them to be really good. The same goes for his stand-up comedy shows. Yeah, he does stand-up as well.

Johnno is also the karaoke host at the Irish Club in Weston on Friday nights. He is working in retail as well as being a real estate agent.

So Johnno is a busy young man but he seems to like it that way. He is a very outgoing and open person. He said he should have a TV show where he would convert people into liking gays, because he seems to be really good at that.

After our interview with Johnno we should have a lot of good audio and we good some good pictures as well. We also have the pictures of Pixie Darling at Gender Bender. So I expect that we should be able to put together an interesting slideshow.


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Online News – Twitter

Creator Rosaura Ochoa

I believe it’s important for aspiring journalists to have a Twitter account. But you can’t just have an account you need to know how to use Twitter. You need to engage with your followers and you have to decide what kind of profile you want to build.

Yeah, Twitter is a good place for building your brand as a journalist. However, you need to decide how much of your private life you want to share with your followers. Some journalists share more of their private life than others.

Journalists who share private things with their followers think this makes them more human, and it’s easier for their followers to connect with them. I believe this is true but I still think it’s a question of how much you should share.

Here is a funny YouTube video about Twitter.

Now I will look at a few journalist profiles on Twitter.

Starting with Mark Colvin’s profile, who calls himself Colvinius. Mark tweets a lot, and as well as tweeting himself he retweets quite a lot. He regularly engages in conversations with his followers. I feel his Twitter account is really professional and he doesn’t tweet much about his private life.

Next up is Annabel Crabb, who is annabelcrabb on Twitter. She engage with her followers in conversation and she use humour when tweeting. She also arranges meetings with sources of stories on Twitter as well as promoting her own work. She does this by telling her followers what she is working on and when the story is finished she tweet a link to it. I think this is a good way of doing it.

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Online News – Analysing slideshows

I don’t like this slideshow. The pictures aren’t good enough. There are a few good pictures in there but overall the pitures are bad.

He mixes colour and black & white pictures. That looks corny and it don’t work for me at all. Most of the time, it works best if you stick to either colour or black & white. As a rule, don’t mix the two.

The audio quality is also pretty bad. I can’t believe I actually watched the whole thing. I think that was only because I was looking for examples of bad slideshows.

To be honest, I don’t really have much positive feedback for this guy. Better luck next time, dude.

I like this slideshow. Most of the pictures match the audio. So although some of the pictures are pretty average, it don’t matter that much. She is telling a story about her family and the average picture quality just made it more real.

If I was her I would have replaced some of the pictures, especially, the once were you only see the back of people. Although this doesn’t face me too much I think it would be better if we saw their faces. Faces can tell you a lot.

Now, over to the audio. I think the audio was pretty average but then again this made it more real.

The length of the slideshow was good. Not too long. I think a slideshow should be around 3 minutes. If they are much longer than 3 minutes they have a tendency of getting a bit boring. So this is definitely something to think about when we are making our own slideshows.


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Sports Journalism – Reflection on making a TV story

I decided to make a profile piece on the Ice Dragons, a Canberra based dragon boating club. It was pretty easy to get in touch with the club and they were happy to talk to me.

The Australian Dragon Boat Championships were held in Canberra from March 30 to 3 April. I went along to talk to a few members of the club on April 1. They were all happy to talk to me so the interviews went well. I also got some great shots of them racing.

But when I got back to the University of Canberra I found that the shots from my interviews were not very good. It was too much head room on all of the shots, and they were all a bit dark. This was hard to see out in the field because of the sun on the screen. So this was the first downer.

Then I discovered that the format of my footage looked wrong when I imported it in to Final Cut Pro 6.0.5. This was the next downer. But shortly after I discovered that the format of my footage was right. Yay! What a relief!

I went along to the Championships again the next day (April 2) to talk to Ice Dragons’ Kel Watt. He was too busy to talk to me the day before, but I got him for 10 minutes this time.

Watt was a great talent. He knew a lot about the Ice Dragons and the sport. He is the president for the Canberra Dragon Boat Association and the Australian Dragon Boat Federation.

My biggest challenge on the second day was the piece to camera I had to do. I didn’t know what to say and it didn’t turn out as I wanted it to. My face was too dark in the shot. So this was the downer of the second day.

I went back to Lake Burley Griffin on Saturday, April 16, to do a few shots of an Ice Dragons training session. When I got there Ice Dragons President Andrew Churches told me it was a regatta on and he had forgot to tell me about it. Nevertheless, it worked out pretty good because I got some good shots of them warming up.

The scary thing this day was doing the piece to camera. I had to time it perfectly so the boats came into the shot in the background while I was talking. I think I did alright. Definitely not easy but it was good practice.

When I started editing my story I realised that I had filmed in different formats on the two separate occasions. This is not good. However, I think it worked out alright in the end, or I’m hoping so. I guess I will find this out at the peer review in our tutorial tomorrow.

It’s been a great experience to do this type of assignment but it takes a lot of work to make it great. I’m hoping for a good review tomorrow. Fingers crossed!!!

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Online News – Moderating Comments

Quite a few journalists coming straight out of University will find themselves in a job where they have to moderate comments for a media outlet. This is a very important job, although, it may not be what you have dreamt of during your years at University. Remember, you have to start somewhere.

Creator Gustavo Pimenta

Online media outlets have different rules and regulationg for what comments they allow on their websites. Some websites have a very spesified comment policy, like the Huffington Post.

The good thing with the Huffington Post comment policy is that it’s easy to find at the bottom of the page. This makes it easy for readers, who want to comment on a particular story, to find out what the website allows in terms of comments.

You can find the ABC comment policy under the link down the bottom of their website under ‘Conditions of use‘. Their comment policy is pretty strict.

But are they able to enforce their policy? If you look at comments under ‘The Drum‘ you can sometimes find comments that I think never should have been posted. This probably has to do with the restricted time The Drum crew can spend on comment moderation.

The Guardian has something called community standards where you find the guidelines for commenting. To be able to comment on the Guardian website you have to register.

In short the Guardian guidelines are:

– If you act with maturity and consideration for other users, you should have no problems.
Don’t be unpleasant. Demonstrate and share the intelligence, wisdom and humour we know you possess.
Take some responsibility for the quality of the conversations in which you’re participating. Help make this an intelligent place for discussion and it will be.

I like the Guardian’s guidelines because they are easy to follow and they are building a good comment community. You want your website to have a pleasant comment environment that can lead to good conversations.

How to moderate your own WordPress blog:

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Online News – Convergent journalism

Click on this link if you want an explanation of what convergent journalism is.

Excellence in convergent journalism?

Excellence in convergent journalism is all about speed, accuracy and depth. It can be really hard to fulfil all of these three elements. You usually have to sacrifice at least one of the three when writing online news. The reasons for this is:

  • you’re under time pressure
  • you’re competing against other online publications to publish first
  • you have too many stories to cover because of staff limitation
  • you have too much information organize/go through before writing the story (information overload)

Here is an example of convergent journalism:

In today’s convergent journalism invironment you need comprehensive content. As a journalist this means you need to link to original sources in your story. You have to make it easy for your readers to find more information about the topic you’re writing about by linking or embed content from other websites.

When linking or embedding content you have to think about the strength of the different forms of media.

Creator katerha

Text is still the form of media that is most used online. By using text it’s easy to give the reader context and detail about the topic.

Still photos is also used a lot in online publication, which can make a story more alive and closer to the reader.

Interactive graphics can often give your story that ‘little extra’. Online readers like to interact when they are consuming news content, so using interactive graphics is a good way to keep them interested.

Video is a pretty new form of media in the online environment. However, it’s groving quickly. Video is good for:

  • enhancing the text
  • giving the story a human element
  • giving your source the chance to talk for longer
  • making the focus more about the event the reporter is covering, and not about the reporter
  • flexibility & authenticity

Audio is the form of media that are used the least online. But it could be good for communicating interesting narratives.

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