November 2007 Archives

November 25, 2007

Media Lab: News and Hollywood

So clearly people can see that I am more a fan of Hollywood, simply because of its glamorous side, than I am of news, because it seems to always be portrayed in a boring light. I like how the section on page 280 of A History of News, actually tied the two together. This section talks about how the two cross over, and I thought it was a great way for me to see how they do tie together, more than just current events in which movie star is entering rehab this week and which one is having a baby. (Though for some odd reason, I find that FASINATING!) It is not always "news." So I really have to say that I like how this book put the two together in this section and talked about them as kind of a partnership, instead of a rivalry.

America's Best Newspaper Writing......readings.

Chosen "Classic" from Chapter Nine

Gene Patterson  - A Flower for the Graves (pages 285 & 286)

Hmmm, I love symbolic writing. This passage made me actually feel like I was a part of the time and the setting of the lovely! I really like how Patterson kept saying we over and over again, as his way of laying the blame for the death of the children on the towns people that did not try to stop the violence that they always saw happening, giving his readers the idea that it was not only the actual killers fault but also the people for not trying to stop it. Overall it is just a great writing piece. I related this to my final article because I really want to pull in student readers attention with it, as well as teachers and other employees of the SHU campus. My article is about mischief on campus and what we (as students) can do to cange the way authority on campus handles it. Since students do not like paying the fines they stick us with, we need to find GOOD alternatives for punishment for others wrong doing and the mischief problem on campus. However the only problem I will have is that I cannot say we like Patterson was allowed to, because it is not an editorial piece....hmmmm. (We'll figure it out.)


Hull- Metal to Bone

Maybe my ADD was slow today and didn't catch on or maybe its just that I love cop stories or maybe, this was some gooood writing. (I'll go with the third.) Pages 96-111 captured and kept my attention with this story (appaulse for not having an ADD moment) I loved how it was a bunch of stories and how Hull was able to tie them all together. Beautiful - I love good writing.


Fuson - Ah, What a Day

More like Ah, What a Sentence. I found this paragraph/sentence very interesting because I personally always make my sentences run on like that when I'm describing something. I really liked how Fuson was able to make this weather report actually interesting too. I wish all weather reports were written like this, like you can actually feel what it feels like outside before you even go out there. How convenient would it be to read a weather report like this and then get dressed and ready for the day. How clever...A+ for Fuson.

November 18, 2007

Media Lab: Mass Circulation and Reporting

A History of News: Chapter 12

The most interesting thing I found on this chapter was the part about the Cherokee language. I thought that it was interesting that the Cherokee wanted to find a way to communicate like the white settlers did. The "talking leaves" as they refered to them as, seemed to me like newspapers and it was interesting how it talked about the young daughter being the first to learn the full language this way.


A History of News: Chapters 13 & 14

These sections actually interested me, because of their relation to the reading for the News Writing class. In News Writing the readings talk about the mistakes reporters make and this reading talked about the history of how reporting came along. Going from observation to now what it is today. These chapters were the most interesting because I think that they tie into what we are told to do with the Setonian the most. They show other ways that reporting went through to become what we do now.

"...there is simply no big story here."

Specific Agenda Item

What I got most out of the assigned reading this time was that "The hardest thing in the world to do is to persude a reporter that there is simply no big story here." In this section, Best Practices explains that readers think that reporters already make up their stories then try to fill it with big quotes to make all of their stories into a big deal, when they may not be. Because of the "reporters need" to always make their story intoa big production, the idea or news writing has lost its appeal and its credibility. (Note to self: don't do this.)


Overall Agenda Item

The Best Practices "book" was a great tool for this class. It was able to show us both sides to each story. It showed us what the reporters do that make the public upset, and how the public reacts to that, and then how we as writers can fix it. Personally, I think this book was the best information brought into the class because it showed the most common mistakes made by people in our field, and then how we could fix those mistakes baised on what the public thinks of those issues.

November 14, 2007

Media Lab: Happiness in the form of a brochure.

My term project is completed for my first EL200!!!!!! (insert big grin here)

As you know, I made a brochure for the Setonian to try to bring in more sports writers.

The brochure is called How to Write a Sports Article... I know VERY catchy title.

But I picked them up from the Duplication Dept. today and they are so cute that puppies now have competition!

I'll be showing them to my class for the "final" in there, along with doing my presentation and giving them to the Setonian office to give to hopeful sports'll be a good time-I hope they are liked as much by all as they are by me.


Okay, my process is as follows...

  1. Contacted Randy Senior (Sports Editor for my home town paper) to get some tips from him about what to do and what not to do when writing sports.
  2. Read over every mention of the word sports in the Associated Press Stylebook.
  3. Made notes from the two above sources.
  4. Made notes into understandable sentences for first draft of brochure.
  5. Found clip-art for the first draft.
  6. Made the first draft of brochure.
  7. Printed a copy of first draft out (in black and white) to ask for feedback.
  8. Put suggested ideas in brochure and fix mistakes on first draft.
  9. Print out second draft (still in black and white) to ask for feedback.
  10. Put suggested ideas in brochure and fixed mistakes on second draft.
  11. Contacted Dorothy from the Duplication Dept. to make final copies.
  12. Talked to Dorothy about plans for final product look of brochure.
  13. Sent Dorothy the brochure sample file.
  14. (Insert Dorothy making the brochure here.)
  15. Picked up brochures and put a smile on cute little Chelsea face.

Yay for being done and for them being beautiful :D

November 13, 2007

Eww...those crappy journalists.

This reading made me sad. This is the main reason why I do not want to write for newspapers all my life. Because, people see them as lower than they are, and do not like when they make errors and then do not try to fix them. Well listen kids, if I write for a newspaper forever, if I make a mistake, tell me and I'll fix it. The End.

This is my favorite part...

  • Track errors; do not rely on readers or wait for them to call. Research shows

     that many readers who note errors do not want to be bothered, for a variety of

     reasons, with calling them in. But the mistakes are remembered and can add to

     the process of credibility erosion.

  • Publish prompt corrections of all factual errors, mistakes and inaccuracies. Be

     wary of policies such as “we will correct significant errors”; that’s open to broad

     interpretation. Instead, lean toward a policy that will result in more rather than.


^I'll do that...if I do this forever.

November 6, 2007

I'm not moving to Chicago.

The reading that we had to do was from America's Best Newspaper Writing pages 87-97. This section was about Linnet Myers, a crime report writer for the Chicago Tribune. Though this story was vey catchy and it was able to grab onto, and hold, my attention, is this how you're supposed to write crime stories?


I always thought that news stories were supposed to get to the point and tell about all the facts upfront. Are crime reports supposed to be different? I mean this seemed more like she was writing a short story for a book, not a crime report for a major newspaper. I don't think this is the kind of writing that we are supposed to be doing in this class, or for this profession. But hey, personally I'd rather write this way, just because its not as plain and sometimes boring, but for news writing isnt this the wrong way to be writing?

November 4, 2007

The Long March to Credibility (...goes on)

Media Lab: Chapters 10-11

High school taught me to read EVERYTHING writen on the page of the assigned readings. (Okay, really AP Government 12 taught me to do this, but still...) I found the most important part of this reading assignment found in a section box (one of those pieces that is kinda just there, to give you insight, but that most students pass over.)


Found on page 157 of A History of News, The Long March to Credibility, tells of how journalists have had to earn their "credibility" that not all of them are out to just make a juicy story, and it also tells about how news became what it is. (At least this is what I got from it.) However it reads as follows.

"Yes, we continue to have our complaints about journalists. They get this or that fact wrong. They ignore something they should cover; they cover something we wish they would ignore. Nevertheless, we have come to more or less trust the information we receive in newspapers and newscasts and increasingly online. This book discusses a number of factors that have contributed to the growing credibility of news. The first was writing, which enabled stories to be preserved over distances. The next was printing press, with its ability to make exact copies. This chapter discusses the contributions the newspaper made to the credibility of the news. Two developments in later centuries would also play key roles; the telegraph and the development of reporting. Radio and cable television, then, made sure this information would be available to us 24 hours a day; satellites spread it around the world. It took a few thousand years, but human beings have finally succeedes in constructing a news system upon which they can-more or less, most of the time-rely.


So that took longer to type out then expected. But the point is, it was MUCH easier for me to type that out then to type out this whole book. Personally, I think that little box makes more sense than the entire thing. Maybe its my ADD, or maybe its my inability to actually care about the HISTORY of news. Either way, that's all I needed out of this book to understand how news become news, and how journalists struggle to get their good names out there. Alright, I got it. I would much rather read about the future of news, than the history. There's nothing I can do about the history, I mean it happened, its over. However the future is where I plan on making my mark, lets talk about how I'm going to do that instead. 

Freakin' Finally!

IANS Chapters 9 & 10

Soooo, It Ain't Necessarily So  has finally made me for real. If everyone will please turn with me to page 174, third paragragh. (Folks, we have a breakthrough!)


"Of course more people are dying. What do you expect? They're getting older, aren't they?"


Is that not the most beautiful sentence you've ever seen? Okay, so maybe I'm more excited about it then most, and I guess I did ask for something that makes fun of newspapers as much as we make fun of TV news in class, BUT, come on David Murray, you made your point about this stuff in like I don't know, chapter two. I think as I tried to hold my eyelids open while reading this book the past few days, I was thinking "Well duh, of course more people are dying. What do you expect? They're getting older, aren't they?" Thank you for the genius breakthrough at the end of the book, you're a good man Murray.

November 2, 2007

Blog Portfolio (Numero Dos)

I'm not going to lie, and I'll be the first to admit, that since the last blog portfolio, I've been a slacker with updating this thing. I basically sucked this past time with getting the assignments on here. However, I did get them all done, but I think I need better titles, because I think sometimes people were confused when they came to my blog looking for the assignments. Anyway, here goes with Portfolio two.


Coverage-Like I said I blogged for every assignment. But since apparently the titles are two creative and are not what the assignment is, people get confused.They are as follows.


Depth- In each of the blogs I refer to page numbers were I found something in the book that really sparked my interest. This is most evident in "I like making lists." and "Do I really want this?" These two posts show the most outside sources to make my blog. With "I like making lists," for each point I make I refer to a page number; whereas with "Do I really want this?" I make reference to one page and go into depth about how I feel about the passage from that page.


Interaction- I was able to interact with peers by commenting our their blogs, and in the case of Jeremy and Carrie's blogs about the Intro and chapter one, I was able to tie them together to make a connection both otherwise didn't see.  Jeremy's post, and Carrie's post.


Discussions- Though this time around I did not receive as many comments as I used to. However I did receive a lot of comments on the day we were told to go comment on other classmates blogs. That day a few people noticed that I had updated my blog and made it into the display that it is at now, and were impressed. I think as  newbie, people didnt expect me to 1) actually be working the blogs 2) know how to design it 3) make good entries of worth with these. So on the "I like making lists" entry there are many comments telling me that I am doing a good job in the class, and with the blogging.


Timeliness- The most timely post that I put up was my entry about President Boyle's appearence in class. She's real?!?! sparked an interest in fellow students and Dr. Jerz because of my reaction to the class discussion that I talked about in my blog that day after class.


Xenoblogging- For this section I think that I contribute to the classes ability to blog in a different way. Though I do leave comments that generate more comments on a person's blog, I think that I help out the blogging process more by helping others be able to do so. For example, the day in class that we were supposed to sit in the lab and blog, many freshmen came to me with questions and I was able to help them do their blogs better. (I think it was easier for them to approach me because I am technically on the same level as them.) But also, some upperclassmen wanted to know how I made the layout of my site and how I was able to work with the site so well. So even though I can make useful comments, I think my service is better used to help others understand the blogging better.


Wildcard- Though the entry New songs by a friend. has NOTHING to do with the class, and has really no reason to be on this site, I think this post shows how I have been able to handle the blogging because of three major things. 1) I was the first in the class to be able to figure out how to put a picture on my site 2) I could use a trackback, which we use frequently in class, to an outside source that has nothing to do with class and 3) I was able to show that I can use different kinds and fonts in one entry. Though this entry does not show my ability to make a good blog for the course site, it shows that I have been able to master the blogging experience, and as a newbie I think that's a good start to the rest of my years at SHU since I will need to use this blog more and more as I continue at this school.