Saturday, January 27, 2007

Toolkit Info

Scroll down a bit and look at the list of books and websites in the blue box, bottom right. I will keep adding them as I encounter them in class and online. I hope you'll pick up a book or two, and scroll through some of these web sites.


This powerful multimedia story, called "Touching Hearts," was done in 2001 by the Herald Sun in Durham, North Carolina. A print reporter and a multimedia reporter both traveled to Nicaragua to tell the tale of N.C. pediatric cardiologists working on the hearts of young children there. The multimedia reporter was Joe Weiss. Find his story here, and remember to allow the pop up window. Make that choice by clicking on the preference button that pops up on the right.

If you watch only one segment, watch Oscar's story. (Off main page, select stories, then select Oscar.) What could be more powerful than hearing a father's words after he hears the doctor cannot save his son because the preventable illness has progressed too far. Hear the doctor's voice when he realizes he cannot save Oscar. Hear Oscar's father weep after his son dies. Hear sounds of the torrential thunderstorm that marked that horrible afternoon.

This story also appeared as a nine-part series in the newspaper, and you can select those stories off the same link above.

Something to realize about multimedia stories is the reader decides where he/she wants to go first. The story telling is non-linear. In this case, the reader can select different buttons off the opening page to proceed to info on the mission, the stories at the hospital, the people involved. This is a new twist for a print reporter, accustomed to folding it all into one story, from top to bottom.

Multimedia: here's where it begins

I realize I have never shared the site where I and other students posted our multimedia projects from the one-week UC Berkeley multimedia workshop from December, 2006. Here is the site.

Here's what's good about this site:

1) Along the left hand side in a blue bar are tutorials on the many-faceted aspects of multimedia reporting, from how to choose a story that works well in multimedia, to tutorials on technique like how to do a stand up or a voice over, nuts and bolts on how to edit video with Final Cut Pro or iMovie. Even details on what equipment the school is using, in case you want to outfit your newsroom. Oh, and let's not forget web design, so tutorials on Dreamweaver and Flash.

2) Student projects. This school has been giving these one-week boot camps for a couple of years now, and the projects are posted. Take a look and see how video, audio, voice over, slide shows are used. These were accomplished in about 2.5 days by total greenhorns. With a little time, you can and will do amazing work.

From the horse's mouth: You Tube founder

The BBC keeps amazing me. They are blogging and reporting and podcasting out of Davos, the World Economic Summit in Switzerland. I'm still trying to absorb it, but came across this podcast with You Tube founder Chad Hurley (left) by the BBC that is worth a look-see. Follow the link above to an 8-minute video from the founder of You Tube on what his site is about: Is it to kill television and movies? No, he says, it's to broaden the voices in conversation.

Two reasons to watch: a new multimedia reporter should NEVER feel shy about her on-the-job first-time video -- here is a hand-held, hallway video that the BBC is posting for its immediacy, not for its beauty. And two: look how young this guy is, and consider the impact he's having on how we communicate with each other. I would encourage you to explore the BBC Davos coverage, and in particular, their Davos Conversations, in which they are hoping to get viewers responding back. This is not unlike the kind of commitment a newspaper might consider from its readers. Imagine the boldness of BBC asking the world to react. Surely it would be easier to ask residents of a state to react to events in that state. Engaging the audience is our future.

Oh, and you can catch Jeff Jarvis of doing his citizen reporter bit. Looks like he and others joined the BBC hallway interview, video camera in hand, and jumped in to ask some questions. Catch his Davos commentary on buzzmachine, including his version of the same interview that BBC posted.

And now for the numbers, wince

OK, this is a downer post. But this article from UPI tallies up the U.S.journalism job losses in 2006. And points out how many jobs have already disappeared this year.

In my Digital Journalism class, the professor is pushing us to figure out a model where amateurs could fold into a process with professionals. Anyone who wants to check out our class blog, where ongoing posts from students get critiqued and pushed along by the professor, please just email me and I'll send you the sign on. It is not a public blog but it's not a purely private blog either. I think this would be worth a working journalist's time.