Live tweeting the International Symposium on Online Journalism

Here’s a timeline of my tweets at the ISOJ event:

    Bonita Stewart from Google opens with a discussion of the changes driven by consumer behavior. #isoj

  1. Change in consumer behavior driven by mobile; we no longer GO online, we LIVE online. #isoj
  2. Video: “life is lived in moments” and these moments are online/offline hybrid experiences. #isoj
  3. I think this video is saying that babies come from the Internet? The stork ain’t happy. #isoj
  4. “Most moments are mobile moments.” Mobile is driving everything. 75% of us use 4 apps regularly. 68% entertainment & gaming apps. #isoj
  5. Mobile app slice of time 88% vs 14% time spent on mobile web… but commercial intent is focused on the mobile web. #isoj
  6. 94% of users rely on the mobile web; 72% use it for their news. #isoj
  7. The right audience at the right time: engagement y axis, monetization x axis. Top right: highly monetizable and engaged. #isoj
  8. Gaming: 2-6% of users are “whales,” ie. make 95% of in-app purchases. #isoj
  9. Moments are personalized, and drive decisions. Understanding moments — drives engagement. #isoj
  10. “The world is yours” with penetration of mobile. More global approach to content, wide distribution, scalable model. #isoj
  11. Millennials think differently about ads, prefer more relevance, feed format, promotional content, sponsored content. #isoj
  12. Millennials are willing to engage with content, e.g. will respond to survey questions in order to get access to complete content. #isoj
  13. You have to identify your micro moments to engage users. Deliver on needs in the moment. Analyze every monment that matters. #isoj
  14. When you have a multitude of devices and consumers are on the go important to analyze and segment consumers. #isoj
  15. Is it creepy that we’re being asked to do so much surveillance, analysis, and manipulation? (Jon’s personal question.) #isoj
  16. Owen Youngman Q&A with Bonita Stewart follows her talk. What does a journalist need to consider first as a “moment”? #isoj
  17. Bonita: we have a number of public tools available, e.g. Google trends will show you the moment that is trending. #isoj
  18. Stewart thinks you could use Google Trends to spot an emerging trend or “moment.” #isoj
  19. Inevitable move toward autonomous self-driving vehicles? We’ll be wearing our cars. Don’t think incrementally; think 10x. #isoj
  20. GoogleX is working on major complex issues. Driverless car intention is to get someone safely from point A to point B. #isoj
  21. Democratization of media space: what is the role of content curation? Heritage of YouTube is user-generated content.Curation emerging. #isoj
  22. Google is curating YouTube inventory via Google Preferred. YouTube “stars” are emerging. Moving toward a more curated space. #isoj
  23. Millennial receptivity to sponsored content: journalists concerned we’re making ads pretend to be news. Stewart: relevance is key. #isoj
  24. Tech and platforms accelerating, driving speed of adoption and innovation. #isoj
  25. RT @SocialcumbreS RT @Rosental: Hi ISOJErs, let’s use #ISOJ as the hashtag and not #ISOJ15 or #ISOJ2015… Let’s concentrate fire on #ISOJ
  26. RT @AMLwhere: Here’s the livestream of #ISOJ in Austin, @Rosental ‘s baby
  27. RT @AMLwhere Here’s the livestream of #ISOJ in Austin, @Rosental ‘s baby
  28. Reformatting the business model, a panel on paywalls, crowdsourcing, native ads, etc. Sustainability of journalism. #isoj
  29. Tim Griggs, @texastribune on Reformatting the Business Model: how to make money from serious journalism. #isoj
  30. RT @EverJFigueroa All this talk about personalized content curation and not a single word about data privacy #ISOJ
  31. Digital focus/data journalism at @TexasTribune. Also does live events which are streamed. How do they make money? #isoj
  32. Corporate sponsorships (cf public media underwriting) provides some funds for @TexasTribune. #isoj
  33. Other @TexasTribune funding sources: events, foundations, individual gifts, and consumer revenue. #isoj
  34. Consumer revenue at @TexasTribune: crowdsourcing, membership, paywall (one digital paid product, Texas Weekly). #isoj
  35. The @TexasTribune is “the poster child for revenue diversity” per #niemanlab. #isoj
  36. Revenue diversity keeps the organization focused on innovation/entrepreneurship, facilitates short-term risks. #isoj
  37. Diversity also protects @TexasTribune against influence. #isoj
  38. Revenue diversity enabled @rossramsey to say no to a corporate speaking gig where the corporation wanted to control the content. #isoj
  39. Dallas Morning News’ @jmoroney_jim is optimistic about journalism, a sustainable business model at scale is forthcoming. #isoj
  40. News orgs do 50% or more of the city, county, and state government reporting. Democracy depends on their work. #isoj
  41. .@jmoroney_jim says it’s time to stop crying: journalism needs fewer Eeyores, more TIggers. #isoj
  42. Local news orgs don’t scale the way they need to for digital advertising to pay for newsrooms. #isoj
  43. Digital-only subscriptions are not the answer to the funding problem. Only 5.5% of Dallas Morning News print circulation revenues. #isoj
  44. Online ad revenues are increasing but CPM numbers are low, therefore the revenues are still low. #isoj
  45. Step one in addressing revenue issue: establish a process for sustaining (not disruptive) innovation. #isoj
  46. Step two: establish a permanently staffed and funded business development organization to acquire businesses that grow revenue. #isoj
  47. Sustaining innovation: event marketing (Untapped Beer Fest), Content Marketing (Speakeasy), Search (Vertical Nerve)…. #isoj
  48. Sustaining innovation, more: Marketing Automation (Distribion). #isoj
  49. “What are we going to do today?” “The same thing we do everyday: save democracy.” ~ @jmoroney_jim #isoj
  50. Crowdfunding talk by @mariaramirezNY. It all started at ISOJ: started a blog with @eduardosuarez. #isoj
  51. Social media strategy for crowdfunding: announced on Twitter. 100K followers in 100 days. Were pervasive and humorous. #isoj
  52. Crowdfunding to raise money, but also to strengthen independence and engage the community, which was more important. #isoj
  53. Crowdfunding works as a business model but also as a powerful editorial tool. @elespanolcom @mariaramirezny #isoj
  54. .@joyarobins from @qz, a digitally native business site. Business model different from traditional news sites. Native ad revenue. #isoj
  55. “If we could build scarcity from the beginning, we could build a sustainable business model”: native ads for the business exec. #isoj
  56. Identify most relevant content and ensure its quality, make it “snackable.” Get it in the right place, where the audience is. #isoj
  57. .@qz strategy should result in an engaged audience. Then follow their needs and trends, also with ads. #isoj
  58. .@qz Global Executive Study. Behaviors and attitudes toward native ads. #isoj
  59. That url for the Global Executive Study was wrong in my last tweet, it’s #isoj
  60. Where does native advertising fit within news? #isoj
  61. Native ads twice as likely to be remembered as banner ads, and almost 5x more likely to remember than full-screen interstitials. #isoj
  62. More organic, polite ads have more impact. #isoj
  63. Ads on @qz: full screen, html5, appear between stories. The ads sell themselves, enable to maintain high cpm. #isoj
  64. RT @brittanyshulman: Pro-tip: Make your ads less annoying. #ISOJ
  65. RT @grovesprof: Great tip from Quartz’s @JoyARobins: Respect habits of your audience. #ISOJ
  66. When you create content for advertisers, don’t set and forget. Monitor and modify (A/B testing of headlines and images). #isoj
  67. Made the mobile ad bigger within the mobile app for better experience. #isoj
  68. Transparency is critical: identify sponsored content in multiple places, per @JoyARobins. #isoj
  69. Chia Ting Ting notes that some companies in Malaysia are afraid to support a political site. #isoj
  70. Content and delivery are both important aspects of native advertising. #isoj
  71. Build trust between editorial and audience. This requires fairness in news reporting. #isoj
  72. Collect data and campaign level; data collection can drive continued spend on advertising. #isoj
  73. RT @ylichterman: Quartz: “The homepage is dead, and the social web has won.” #ISOJ
  74. Retargeting: the funnel aligns with prospecting – targeting – retargeting lower funnel buyers. #isoj
  75. Crowdfunding: “Buy a Brick” to build a new home for Malaysiakini. #isoj
  76. New ad charging model for CPE (cost per engagement) or CPH (cost per hour). Attention/time/content quality. #isoj
  77. RT @gabrielle_munoz: Interesting strategy from Chia Ting Ting of @malaysiakini: breaking news free for three hours, then behind paywall #I…
  78. RT @arthurfigueired: Começou!!! #ISOJ #ISOJ2015 Cerca de 35 nacionalidades participam do evento neste ano, segundo @Rosental.…
  79. RT @MollyStier: Important to maintain line between business and editorial teams, say @malaysiakini & @joyprobbins #ISOJ
  80. Q: why doesn’t @TexasTribune rest on its laurels? Why try to go to a next level? Jim: focus on innovation around audience. #isoj
  81. Brigg: we know how many we reach, but how many should we reach? @TexasTribune #audience #reach #isoj
  82. @TexasTribune adapting agile methodology for all it does. Works in sprints. #isoj
  83. The role of speed in the mobile media experience via @clockwerks, @vox Chief Product Officer. “Fast is a feature” on mobile. #isoj
  84. Apple keynotes include several mentions of speed: as in “faster than…” You want a quick response from a mobile device. #isoj
  85. How is speed a factor in journalism? Nielsen: “A 10 second delay will often make users leave a site immediately.” On mobile, 1 sec. #isoj
  86. Put SOMETHING on the screen in 1 second – what are you going to put? 1st second is like “above the fold.” #isoj
  87. After network overhead you have 400ms left in that first second, to put something on the screen. #isoj
  88. Average site load on mobile devices = 7 seconds. We have a lot of work to do. #isoj
  89. “The article is the new home page.” An aside in the @clockwerks discussion of speed. #isoj
  90. Native apps are fast but hard to find (via search and social, which is how we find things.) #isoj
  91. Google knows how fast everything is loading, and they’re using speed as a (qualitative) signal. #isoj
  92. Facebook thinks your pages are too slow – and they’re happy to host your content! #isoj
  93. Data-informed tradeoffs while building products: what makes a great experience? #isoj
  94. .@clockwerks will never be satisfied with the speed of his products: it’s never fast enough. #isoj
  95. Performance dashboard making speed a metric shared throughout the company. @voxmediainc built tool called tempo to measure speed. #isoj
  96. They have a dedicated performance team with three engineers at @voxmediainc. #isoj
  97. Fast cars need good drivers – speed isn’t just about tech, but also about speed of news delivery. #isoj
  98. Once you’ve dealt with speed, what do you do about context in mobile? @s_m_i discussing audience context and infrastructure. #isoj
  99. The phenomenon of rage deleting apps: why are you pushing content that doesn’t fit my context? #isoj
  100. Journalist or editor perception of importance doesn’t necessarily match the user’s context. #isoj
  101. Mobile devices closer to the people who use them, driving intolerance of information delivered in those intimate spaces. #isoj
  102. Mobility is less and less true of mobile – assumptions otherwise may be detrimental. #isoj
  103. We’re building to an assumption of a fast and unlimited data connection, and that often isn’t the case. #isoj
  104. Most of the people in the world lack fast infrastructure and complete mobility. #isoj
  105. Can you create a post to a CMS from your phone? Or edit? Or add media? No, and this is a challenge. #isoj
  106. RT @robquig: In a room full of journalists, no one raised their hands when asked whether they can update their sites using a mobile. #ISOJ
  107. The mobile mindset is not about the end user experience alone, but also about the creator experience. #isoj
  108. Audience is coming from mobile; systems of creation are optimized for desktop experience. #isoj
  109. Mobile != screen size. Resizing doesn’t necessarily create a mobile experience. #isoj
  110. RT @GinaMChen: Not enough women are designing mobile, which is why they are too big, says Buzzfeed editor. #ISOJ
  111. .@withdrake screened a short video from Vice’s first year of global journalism. #isoj
  112. “Our smartphones are probably our most intimate relationships.” ~ @withdrake #isoj
  113. .@vice started with factual programming, news emerged. #isoj
  114. When @Vice started partnership with @HBO, overnight newsy clips became the most watched video on the Vice website. #isoj
  115. Millennials, @Vice audience, were thirsty for news programming. No one saw that millennials wanted news programming before this. #isoj
  116. RT @kkaufhold: Organic, natural video of real world conflicts are a staple of @VICE @WithDrake #txstisoj #ISOJ
  117. Scripps is a broadcasting and digital company. @asymson of Scripps: traditoinal media is an “over-broad” experience. #isoj
  118. Again talking about messages and content delivered where it’s not relevant; we don’t understand audience + context. #isoj
  119. Mobile ubiquity brings consumer into the journalism and news-utility equation, aka “setting the agenda.” #isoj
  120. We shouldn’t want consumers to make decisions about content consumption based solely on their interests, but relevance is a factor. #isoj
  121. If you’re not hyper-relevant, you’ll be irrelevant. Consumer will increasingly expect an experience that’s personally relevant. #isoj
  122. We have to lose the assumption that editors and journalists can decide what’s broadly important vs consumer driving relevance. #isoj
  123. A story that drives page views may not be broadly important and may not drive engagement. #isoj
  124. You have to be ready to trade something to the consumer for their identity. #isoj
  125. You can negotiate access to information that will inform relevance in a specific way. #isoj
  126. “We’re our knowledge workers, which means 80% of our job is writing email…” @withdrake #isoj
  127. Ugh, I saw a mental typo on the widescreen in front of me. “We’re knowledge workers,” not “we’re our knowledge workers.” #isoj
  128. The tools you equip your newsrooms with will have to match the devices people use. ~ @s_m_i #isoj
  129. .@clockwerks tortures staff with his iphone 4, ios7 with 3G. A good way to understand how people experience sites. Most have 3G. #isoj
  130. We’re all storytellers! via @garciaruize 1st point: social engagement has to be considered at the point where story is assigned. #isoj
  131. @washingtonpost had 65% growth over last year: 52 million uniques. #isoj
  132. Innovation at @washingtonpost: consider up front how to get and engage an audience. #isoj
  133. When you start a piece of content, you have to consider whether people would share it. #isoj
  134. The distribution model today is social. #isoj
  135. When @washingtonpost starts a project, they have an engineer and a social person in the room at start of ideation. #isoj
  136. “A reporter, an engineer, and a social media expert walk into a bar…”
  137. .@verge postst to ten different social platforms. Each has its onw audience & interests. Requires careful curation and focus. #isoj
  138. .verge also has podcasts, so that’s another challenge. #isoj
  139. Videos on @verge are getting the same kinds of views as those placed on YouTube. #isoj
  140. Video doesn’t always play well on Facebook, so @verge adapts a version for that platform. #isoj
  141. New processes for “40 Portraits in 40 Years” – Brown Sisters, NY Times. How do you make sure story jumps through the noise? @nyccyn #isoj
  142. NYTimes “rapid and relentless push to breaking news.” @nyccyn #isoj
  143. NYTImes: how connect, find more relevance with readers? What is the human element? #isoj
  144. Facebook powerful for @NYTimes in testing interest targeting and geo targeting. #isoj
  145. Brief explainers in @NYTimes drive social engagement and sharing. #isoj
  146. .@NYTimes Aggressive testing – framing, targeting, time of day. #isoj
  147. Audience development via Mashable, @stacymartinet. #isoj
  148. At @mashable, the focus is on what they can control. #isoj
  149. Brand matters more than ever. #isoj
  150. From a brand standpoint, we all now live in streams. In the stream, the brand is all you have via @stacymartinet #isoj
  151. Own your relationship with your community and with your readers. That relationship is more important than ever. #isoj
  152. RT @robquig: Main @nytimes account is more visual than in the past (good!), also occasionally having some fun (good!), still not interactiv…
  153. RT @CindyRoyal: Command attention, connect, show & tell (visual important, esp on mobile), learn from wins & losses – @NYCcyn #isoj #txsti…
  154. You have to obsess equally over data and creative. – @stacymartinet #isoj
  155. Collaboration is a must. @stacymartinet #isoj
  156. From the panel, I’m getting that each news org has to figure out what works for its culture and its audience. #isoj
  157. Plan but be nimble and responsive via @NYCCyn. #isoj
  158. I can see how the writer’s role is changing and expanding in the new digital ecosystem. #isoj
  159. RT @jamiestockwell: So many badass women leading the discussions! “@tjohnson1960: #ISOJ today has to be inspiring for the female audience. …
  160. Om Mane Padme Reach. #isoj
  161. Good long form stories deserve an audience, and you have to be thoughtful about how to build that visibiity & presence. #isoj
  162. “If your budget can sustain it, snap up photo editors en masse.” @stacymartinet #isoj
  163. Keynote by @sbg1 of @politico. Editing while disrupting – a report from the Washington front. #isoj
  164. .@Politico expanding into Europe and expanding into more disruption. #isoj
  165. “We’ve changed, but the mission hasn’t – it’s still built around the notion of coverage.” @sbg1 #isoj
  166. “Original reporting is a recipe for journalism that holds its value.” @sbg1 #isoj
  167. “The point is not the platform, it’s the journalism.” @sbg1 #isoj
  168. .@Politico is growing into Europe and into various states in the U.S. #isoj
  169. Some are chasing eyeballs without a clear sense of how it fits into journalism. #isoj
  170. Beware of new media gurus who preach the new gospel of this or that. #isoj
  171. RT @grovesprof: Striking that the Washington Post seems more innovative than Politico these days. #ISOJ
  172. @sbg1 says she’s a glass half full type; @evanasmith says she’s a Glasser half full… #isoj
  173. There’s a bit of a bubble around politics and campaigns. @sbg1 #isoj
  174. RT @louiegilot: .@sbg1 #ISOJ on news organizations today: Are we the monks carefully illuminating their Bibles by hand or the Gutenbergs cr…
  175. Cost of web development has fallen to zero? Can’t agree with that one. #isoj
  176. RT @CindyRoyal: I think it is about the platform. Social, sharing, engagement, different story formats. Thank you @evanasmith #isoj #txstis…
  177. RT @Chanders: I think @sbg1 sounds like a great editor, but her laundry list of ways news “gurus” were wrong sounds off-base in a number of…
  178. .@sbg1 Everybody is fast right now; just typing it first isn’t a big deal, though it was for a while. #isoj
  179. RT @tjohnson1960: #ISOJ OMG! Did we just hear the term commodification?
  180. RT @Hermida: Platform and journalism are intrinsically connected and always have been. There is a danger of privileging one over the other …
  181. RT @robquig: The @washingtonpost is using Snapchat to cover the campaign in Iowa. @politico isn’t interested in experimenting with it, appa…
  182. “Chasing after the next new thing” isn’t what I think we’ve been talking about. There are truly innovative new platforms. #isoj
  183. RT @robquig: Kind of weird to hear @politico sounding like the traditional org while Grandpa @washingtonpost is talking virtual reality/eng…
  184. People are hungry, in a world where they’re drowning in little bits of information, for stories that connect the dots. @sbg1 #isoj
  185. Question about domination of information distribution by the stacks. Any debate about it? None, per @sbg1. #isoj
  186. Was 2000 the beginning of the digital era for politics? 2004 was more of a turning point, IMO. #isoj
  187. 2000 election: traditional information-oriented toles remained central. Via Internet journalists found new ways to do the same things. #isoj
  188. 2004, well into the blog era, editors started to emphasize participatory options. Re-envisioning role of journalism. #isoj
  189. In 2008 editors reverted to the way they were thinking about information delivery before 2004, tho greater participation was possible. #isoj
  190. The way journalists see their role in a democratic society hasn’t changed much despite innovation and new participatory capabilties. #isoj
  191. RT @meredithclark: Academic conference bingo: Mention of #MechanicalTurk. Drink. #ISOJ
  192. Mediated moments: Kennedy assassination early report followed by Nescafe commercial. Jarring. #isoj
  193. British Pathé YouTube Channel. #isoj
  194. Terry Britt is talking about the “dead media” problem. Media technologies evolve, and some content might not go along. #isoj
  195. Dead Media: #isoj
  196. Comment sections aren’t as inclusive as we might have thought. Via @media_republik #isoj
  197. RT @digitalamysw: Now up: Fiona’s 3-year research project on online news commenting: #isoj
  198. If a large part of your audience is not engaged with your reporting of the news, you’ve got a problem. @media_republik #isoj
  199. Studied how hard it is to make comments at particular sites. Only 55% hosted freely available in-house comments. #isoj
  200. 12.5% of the news sites studied put comments behind a paywall. #isoj
  201. 32.5% of the sites relied totally on social media for comments. FB and Twitter: ubiquity without accountability or consistency. #isoj
  202. Sometimes difficult to find the icons for access to comment. #isoj
  203. RT @Hermida: @Chanders @SethCLewis @Brizzyc @LawrenceRegina Cold fusion journalism – cheap, endless, renewable source of high quality news …
  204. RT @lalorek: #ISOJ Digital journalism offers challenges & opportunities for women leaders/entrepreneurs – Knight Center at UT:…
  205. Women leaders and entrepreneurs in online journalism kick off day 2 of the symposium… at 8am, with breakfast tacos! #isoj
  206. Check out the symposium livestream at – the future of journalism is here! #isoj
  207. @JnnBrndl on @Curious_Nation: scaling tools via a startup-“journalists invite the public to set their agenda & report alongside them.” #isoj
  208. .byphuongly building collaboration and diverse teams via news hackathons – Migrahack. #isoj
  209. .@lalorek founded and publishes Silicon Hills News in Austin area. Covers startups and entrepreneurs. #isoj
  210. .@WikiRamos founded Animal Politico, influential news organization in Mexico. Started with @Pajaropolitico. #isoj
  211. .@skoknic executive director of CIPER in Chile: #isoj
  212. .@lauzommer from Argentina. Improves the quality of public debate there via @chequeado. #isoj
  213. .@lauzommer talks about how they try to “increase the cost of lying” at @cheqeuado. #isoj
  214. RT @Hermida: Good question about using algorithms to code versus human coding from @LawrenceRegina at #isoj research breakfast
  215. “Working together [women] could create these fabulous projects… that they could never have done alone.” @byphuohly #isoj
  216. “If you have something you’re passionate about and you love it… get your tribe together and go for it.” @lalorek #entrepreneur #isoj
  217. RT @Natalie_Choate: Proud to work at @TexasTribune where women lead many teams – including our tech dept! #WhoRunTheWorld #ISOJ
  218. .@skoknic Cooperation in news: anybody in the newsroom can support any of the jobs there. #isoj
  219. @lalorek on native advertising: interesting to break down barriers in our own minds in favor of new ways of doing business. #isoj
  220. Interestingly difficult to live tweet a conversation where each tweet has to stand alone outside its context. #isoj
  221. Main challenge to Animal Politico is to be a site of (many sub-) sites. Name “Politico” barrier to advertising. @WikiRamos #isoj
  222. .@ByPhuongLy challenge and opportunity of #data journalism, getting more entities to make their data available. #isoj
  223. Excited about conversation about small tweaks to the journalistic process that can be big innovations. @JnnBrndl #isoj
  224. .@mwcao is jamming with her camera at #isoj
  225. RT @MaryAnnaBananaa: “Our biggest challenge is finding sources of revenue.” -Francisca Skoknic, deputy director, CIPER, Chile. #ISOJ @ciper
  226. .ByPhuongLy There were people in digital space that didn’t think two women of color could pull off a hackathon-earned their respect. #isoj
  227. .@lalorek Startup teams that have women in a leadership position are outperforming those that don’t – funders looking for those teams. #isoj
  228. @lalorek You have to be loud to get attention for the work you’re doing. #isoj
  229. Q. from Russian attendee, who notes that in some places sources for journalists are killed. How do you protect your sources? #isoj
  230. .@wikiramos One solution to abuse is transparency: make the (abusive) actions of leaders transparent. #isoj
  231. .@wikiramos mentions MexicoLeaks, Independent platform for citizen reporting and transparency in Mexico. #isoj
  232. RT @mwcao: “You have to make a lot of noise.” Awesome panel by women leaders in online journalism. #isoj
  233. RT @DanSmigrod: The Arrival of Virtual Reality Journalism Ask me 4 a demo of Matterport Pro 3D Camera at #ISOJ http:…
  234. We have to be trending, we’re getting spam at #isoj
  235. .@jayrosen_nyu introducing Isaac Lee of Univision, keynote speaker. President of news across platform, CEO of Fusion w/ ABC. #isoj
  236. .@isaacleep At U.S. border, surge of children fleeing from drug cartel violence reached breaking point last year. #isoj
  237. No more relatable content than a human crisis like this mass migration from the south. How do you engage? Earn their trust. @isaacleep #isoj
  238. “We are trying to help them find a meaningful place in society, because we champion their cause with no shame.” @isaacleep #isoj
  239. Jorge Ramos on cover of Time Mag: “he makes my job so easy… talk about trust, you talk about Jorge Ramos.” @isaacleep #isoj
  240. “I’m proud that Univision as a company has contributed materially in creating a first class investigative unit.” @isaacleep #isoj
  241. Univision investing heavily in local presences. #isoj
  242. Univision has huge responsibility in the level of trust with audience. #isoj
  243. RT @MollyStier: “If you talk about trust, you talk about @jorgeramosnews,” says @issacleep. ¡Es verdad! #ISOJ
  244. Fusion is a bet to stay ahead of the curve. @thisisfusion #isoj
  245. The changing face of diverse America: slides show evolution of diversity. @isaacleep #isoj
  246. Univision experiences growths while other media organizations are declining. #isoj
  247. Univision is watching and adapting to trends, e.g. mobile, wearables. #isoj
  248. “If we are not prepared to go and search for the audience wherever they live, we will lose.” @isaacleep #isoj
  249. “Humor is what the millennial generation respects, and what they strive to be is funny.” @isaacleep #isoj
  250. Four pillars in reaching millennials: contest, journey, humor, and cojones. @isaacleep #isoj
  251. .@isaacleep at #isoj
  252. .@jayrosen_nyu and @oscarleep #isoj
  253. .@isaacleep not sure #Buzzfeed could make an important story viral. #isoj
  254. “We didn’t know we could be amazing content producers,our understanding of the issues wd allow us to tell story as no one else could.” #isoj
  255. Mainstream media and legacy media make all sorts of excuses to suggest that the audience hasn’t gone digital. @isaacleep #isoj
  256. Q. How do you use metrics to determine people are engaging with what’s important? 1) Hire people you admire/respect & give authority. #isoj
  257. Second answer: not to be afraid of success, of traffic, of scale. If you want important stories shared, you better have scale. #isoj
  258. Q. about diversity within Hispanic community. We have to talk about a diverse new mainstream, we shdn’t put labels on people. #isoj
  259. “If you think that a group of white dudes can produce diverse content, then you’re lost.” @isaacleep #isoj
  260. Q. Declining number of millennials watching live television. “They can watch wherever they want;we produce content for each platform.” #isoj
  261. ABC doesn’t champion anything, Univision champions diversity. Conflict? #isoj
  262. @isaacleep it’s like you and your wife being different, and having a unique chile with a mind of its own.
  263. Next session is on virtual reality journalism, led by @webjournalist. #isoj
  264. RT @JoyOfRoyQ: #ICYMI @webjournalist spoke in spanish to make the non-speakers nervous. #trolling #ISOJ #ForRealsForReals
  265. Globally more people have access to cellphones than to working toilets. #isoj
  266. Major changes in computer platform – miniaturization, wearables. #isoj
  267. VR has been promised to us since the 80s. Immersive computer-simulated environment that can simulate physical presence. #isoj
  268. Augmented Reality is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment augmented by digital. #isoj
  269. Oculus “brought back virtual reality from the dead.” #isoj
  270. MozVR sounds like VRML. #isoj
  271. .@webjournalist will have a VR journalism course at Annenberg. #isoj
  272. .@immersivejourno has video of experimental uses of VR in journalism. #isoj
  273. Dibbel’s “A Rape in Cyberspace” – responded as if real, even in a text-based virtual reality. #isoj
  274. Thinking about embodiment and the way our brains are wired. Impact on immersive vr journalism. #isoj
  275. “I have done legacy media, and I’m bringing those best practices into this (VR) space.” @immersivejourno #isoj
  276. “Gone Gitmo” in Second Life was a virtual simulation of Gitmo. #isoj
  277. Frightening VR simulations of imprisonment and torture make compelling journalism. #isoj
  278. Use of Force’VR simulation of a real event. The object is to record a police beating with your cellphone before the battery dies. #isoj
  279. Project Syria: VR experience of a bombing based on real videos. #isoj
  280. RT @robquig: The production costs and skill level to stitch together VR and 3D model are very high. Need to come down for this to catch on.…
  281. .@taylor_owen working with VR aligning form with the capacity, connstraints, and needs of journalism. #isoj
  282. Does VR bring us closer? Feels closer, but it’s still a representation. #isoj
  283. Goals: investigate what’s involved, butter understand nonfiction storytelling potential of VR. Produce a good work of journalism. #isoj
  284. 360 cameras around for a long time, but to get depth of field they need to be stereoscopic. #isoj
  285. Where could VR add something meaningful to the journalism, what story is best for this? Settled on Ebola in W Africa. #isoj
  286. .@taylor_owen working through Tow Center @towcenter #isoj
  287. What they found: a powerful effect of immersion in VR. #isoj
  288. Editorially important to shoot specifically for VR not 2D. #isoj
  289. It’s difficult to show a linear narrative in VR. Interstitial menu is a crucial framing narrative device. #isoj
  290. An added layer of interactivity within the VR is very important. #isoj
  291. VR requires big teams and significant expense. #isoj
  292. VR industry is still developing its production language. #isoj
  293. Post production process is way to cumbersome for journalism right now. Sophisticated production team and a lot of time required. #isoj
  294. The hardware for VR is developing at an astonishing pace. #isoj
  295. Many mentions of Google Cardboard. Build your own! #isoj
  296. “VR is bigger than gaming.” @raysotovr #isoj
  297. Why tell stories in VR? Bring a world to the consumer, immerse them in it. Storytelling potential is endless, driver != passenger. #isoj
  298. A timeline of my live #isoj tweets is here:
  299. .@raysotovr: we’ve templatized VR, can release VR content within hours. #isoj
  300. There are quite a few VR skeptics, “the dark lord of the Sith.” But VR is a new platform, not a replacement. Don’t fear change. #isoj
  301. RT @digitalamysw: Ray Soto bringing forth the “Darth Tradition” to the newsroom via VR #isoj
  302. Panel: starting with question on the ethics of VR journalism. @immersivejourno is more concnerned with possible nausea. #isoj
  303. “You’re tricking someone into thinking they’re there” … that they actually are seeing what’s real. @taylor_owen. #isoj
  304. @immersivejourno is sure that people don’t confuse VR with reality. “Sorry if I sound defensive, I’ve spent years defending myself.” #isoj
  305. .@raysotovr “It’s the unknown that gets me excited.” @taylor_owen “Where’s it better to have a livestream on phone vs full immersion.” #isoj
  306. Given heightened emotional involvement, how do you make choices about creating the VR context? How deep do you go? #isoj
  307. .@immersivejourno: I don’t have the answers (re ethics and context). She always warns users what they’re getting into. #isoj
  308. RT @joeruiz: What I want to know about VR journalism is how those of us in day-to-day news get started with producing this work? #ISOJ
  309. What does it mean to be a journalist inside virtual environments? #isoj
  310. .@NYTimes commenting system includes “Times Picks” – curation of most interesting and thoughtful comments. #isoj
  311. 14 @NYTimes moderators to premoderate posts and select NYTimes picks. #isoj
  312. Selection of high quality comments can model commenting for users, theoretically. #isoj
  313. What are the editorial criteria for selecting these comments? And how can the process of moderation scale? Augmented by tech? #isoj
  314. Study looked at criteria for inclusion of comments (vs exclusion). #isoj
  315. RT @mairalg: Research presentation on NYT comment picks. Shout out to @BasseyE, who heads community @nytimes. #ISOJ
  316. RT @media_republik: @ndiakopoulos: Can comment moderation be augmented by algorithmic selection? What are characteristics of high quality c…
  317. .@cindyroyal and @daleblasingame from @txst discussing (very timely) data journalism. #isoj
  318. What is data journalism, process or product? What roles are skills are involved, who does it affect, is it really new? #isoj
  319. Not a lot of research on data journalism so far. Opportunities for study once we define the field. #isoj
  320. RT @daleblasingame: .@CindyRoyal talking about our work on defining data journalism. #ISOJ
  321. @cindyroyal did initial research and ended up with 63 assertions about data journalism. #isoj
  322. Went to online news association in Chicago and interviewed several on video about perceptions of data journalism. #isoj
  323. What’s new: personalization, customization, databases, interative (from the related term set). #isoj
  324. Definition of data journalism. #isoj
  325. Data journalism is a process by which analysis and presentation of data are employed to better inform and engage the public. #isoj
  326. Engaging news project, @joshscacco. To bridge commercial and democratic aims, meet news orgs where they are. #isoj
  327. News organizations are engaging in a socialization process inside and outside the newsroom. #isoj
  328. Can we get a better sense who someone is by data mining their comment history? (Is there a privacy question here?) #isoj
  329. RT @jamiestockwell: Reporters should engage online with readers, in comments and social media. Beyond branding, it’s how we better understa…
  330. There are elements of data journalism that make it completely like journalism, but there are significant differences, too. #isoj
  331. There are arguments for seeing data journalism as like or unlike traditional journalism. Current research is just a jumping off point. #isoj
  332. RT @NBBarrios: “It’s easy to say, ‘here’s a tool, use it,'” Scacco said. But they need to teach audiences how to utilize it. #ISOJ
  333. RT @CindyRoyal: Here’s our paper, Data Journalism, An Explication. Video and charts #isoj #txstisoj
  334. |LIVE NOW| Julia at #ISOJ #meerkat
  335. #ISOJ
  336. Supply of media content far exceeds ability of the public to consume what is offered – and content is therefore cheaper. #isoj
  337. Ability of firms to profitably connect audiences with content is diminishing. #isoj
  338. RT @tjohnson1960: #ISOJ journalists lose control over message in social media
  339. RT @grovesprof: Media consumption has become more individualized and active. @picard_robert #ISOJ
  340. RT @grovesprof: With social media, you’re combining mass communication with interpersonal. It’s a very different type of communication. @pi…
  341. Digital consumption is not the same as news consumption. Digital news production won’t save print. #isoj
  342. Digital news consumption is going up, however PAID consumption is slowing in most countries. #isoj
  343. Those who are currently paying and willing to pay are plateauing at about half of what they spent for print. #isoj
  344. Why should anyone pay for news online? It’s available free from many sources.
  345. For those who want to pay for news, we have to figure out how to give the more, and how to get them to pay more. #isoj
  346. Google, Apple, Youtube, et al. – i.e. the stacks -are not our friends, though they might be our partners. #isoj
  347. RT @Hermida: Here’s the bad news: 70-80% of people never intend to pay for news so have to get existing customers to spend more @picard_rob…
  348. It is a problem when you have intermediaries taking significant percentages of the money. #isoj
  349. Media firms are struggling to find strategies to operate in VUCA environments. #isoj
  350. VUCA means: indistinct industry boundaries, corporate structures in flux, rapid changes in sources of competitive advantage. #isoj
  351. Advertising was in trouble long before the Internet. Was already losing audience. #isoj
  352. Advertising went up until 2005, then it started to tank. #isoj
  353. What can we do? Newspapers haven’t had to do r&d or business dev. #isoj
  354. In news, we need continual innovation, learning, and adaptation (diversification similar to what @jmoroney_jim was saying). #isoj
  355. When people in the news talk about business models, they’re no talking about business models – but revenue models. #isoj
  356. Our revenue doesn’t work if our product doesn’t work. We’re preparing stories like we have traditionally. #isoj
  357. Stabilizing consumption and revenues are the primary strategic objectives. #isoj
  358. Strategic tipping pionts in the digital era for print and broadcast suggest crisis point. #isoj
  359. RT @JaneBSinger: Google, FB et al are not our friends. They may be our business partners, but they’re in it for their own gain. Face it! @p…
  360. What can you do that nobody else provides? That’s what people will pay you for. #isoj
  361. Advertisers will be demanding much better metrics for performance reasons. A problem for all, news and other digital. #isoj
  362. RT @garciaruize: @picard_robert At some point you have to make the decision about whether to continue print. #ISOJ
  363. Data created for advertising purposes doesn’t tell you enough about actual consumption of info and response to messaging. #isoj
  364. RT @robquig: There are cool things that you can do at small places with few resources. Tech tools are mostly free. It only takes enthusiasm…
  365. RT @digitalamysw: How to do R&D? Look at what other news orgs are not doing, look at other companies/industries says @picard_robert #isoj
  366. Global roundup of journalists using the Internet to support human rights and democracy is starting at #isoj
  367. Starting a panel of global journalists who use the Internet to support human rights and democracy. #isoj
  368. Tomas Bodoky, Atlatszo Started in 2011, constantly growing since. Several project on freedom of information. #isoj
  369. Haris Dedovic, Karike, magazine for youth in Bosnia. Putting videos online to address problems. #isoj
  370. Gopal Guragain, Ujyaalo Online – multimedia. 24 hr live broadcast. #isoj
  371. Jahaanzaib Haque, Dawn, Pakistan. Use comments to slip in controversial news. #isoj
  372. Dawn comments section hosted some online diplomacy, Pakistanis talking to Indians. #isoj
  373. Impressive to realize that journalists in some parts of the world have to fear for their lives. #isoj
  374. Mike Runey from Texas, working for Meydan TV, Azerbaijan. Meydan operates from Berlin. #isoj
  375. Gregory Shevdov, Caucasian Knot, Russia. Covers human rights abuses. #isoj
  376. Laura Weffer, Efecto Cocuyo in Venezuela. 3 months old. #isoj
  377. Anim van Wyk, Africa Check, South Africa. Only fact-checking website in Africa. #isoj
  378. Global panel at #isoj
  379. Jahanzaib notes dangerous environment in Pakistan. He stopped using Twitter because the Taliban spokesman is following him. #isoj
  380. Digital trolls on Caucasian Knot can be neutralized by other commenters. #isoj
  381. In Venezuela, citizens use social media to evade government restrictions. #isoj
  382. RT @jaxstone: The stories being told by these journalists are important, fascinating, inspiring and scary. #ISOJ
  383. Gregory Shvedov talks about the impact of crowdsharing (not croudsourcing). #isoj
  384. RT @animvw: The effect when polio lies were not #factchecked in #Nigeria #ISOJ @AfricaCheck
  385. Sometimes as journalists we have to provide uncomfortable truths. ~ Laura Weffer
  386. RT @webjournalist: I’ve truly enjoyed hearing @jhaque_ speak at #ISOJ.
  387. .@fmrussell on Twitter and the gatekeeping role of journalists. #isoj
  388. Journalists say they’re willing to interact socially on Twitter, but they’re actually reluctant to do so in practice. #isoj
  389. By not interacting on Twitter, journalists don’t take full advantage of its social characteristics. @fmrussell #isoj
  390. Which journalists use Twitter most effectively? Possibly sports journalists, who reportedly interact more on Twitter. #isoj
  391. For his project @fmrussell compared journalist from prestige pubs with those from more active and influential online-only sites. #isoj
  392. Analysis of 900 tweets over one month by journalists last year showed sports journalists more active & interactive. #isoj
  393. Public affairs journalists seemed particularly careful in their Twitter interactions.
  394. .@amberhinsley based 10 miles from Ferguson, MO. Studied #Ferguson strategic messaging by journalists & activists. #isoj
  395. .@amberhinsley looked at local journalists only. How might they act in a time of crisis? Tend to rely on professional routines. #isoj
  396. Would journalists at #Ferguson focus on chaos and confrontation, and not on larger issues? #isoj
  397. How would local activists respond in #Ferguson? #isoj
  398. Content analysis of local #Ferguson activists and journalists, also looking at message frames. #isoj
  399. RT @meredithclark: Wondering how “activists” were defined in this sample. #ISOJ
  400. Journalisms and activists both more likely to use original tweets that retreats at #Ferguson. #isoj
  401. 60% of the tweets in the #Ferguson study had at least one hashtag. A lot were used consistently. #isoj
  402. #ISOJ
  403. .@krheim on live tweeting a presidential primary debate: Twitter posts vs news coverage: how do they compare? #isoj
  404. Centering resonance analysis identifies most influential words in a text – applied to presidential debate tweets by @krheim. #isoj
  405. Most influential words in pres debate were policy-related. News coverage also had policy words, also strategy-oriented words. #isoj
  406. Twitter discussion words were not policy or strategy words, but references to Romney’s bet offer: thenthousand and dollar. #isoj
  407. Other emphasis on media-oriented words, like ABC and DianeSawyer. #isoj
  408. Some discussion of policy on Twitter, but about the policy issues NOT discussed in the debate (why not?). #isoj
  409. Unlike tweets, new coverage didn’t make much of Romney’s bet. #isoj
  410. Media-focused metacoverage – tweets that focused on the role of media in the debate. #isoj
  411. Generally @krheim study shows a disconnect between Twitter and news, and that those following on Twitter might be more cynical. #isoj
  412. We can look at the discussion on Twitter as a critique of the debate. The people on Twitter were fed up. #isoj
  413. Social media like Twitter might move us to a new stage, a focus on the people who matter most, the voters. #isoj
  414. .@kathleeno on black Twitter and the Gabby Douglas (hair) controversy. Focusing on how news becomes news. #isoj
  415. While Gabby Douglas performing at Olympics, controversy over her hair broke out. #isoj
  416. What is diffusion of news? News can bubble up from small groups online to mainstream news sites. #isoj
  417. Black Twitter as a social public, “a community constructed through their use of social media by outsiders and insiders alike.” #isoj
  418. Intersectionality analyzes signifiers of exclusion and domination work – race, class, gender. #isoj
  419. Framing and power: how we use words to push domination and hegemony. #isoj
  420. Methods inlcuded qualitative textual analysis, review of new pieces and websites plus mainstream pubs. 1500 tweets (or more). #isoj
  421. Black women owns the Gabby Douglas story, per @kathleeno. Made the story about owning it. #isoj
  422. .@kathleeno: “Never have Gabby Douglas and Hillary Clinton been seen in the same sentence together.” #isoj
  423. “How did the Olympics turn into a hair debate?” ~ HuffPo. “That’s diffusion of news.” ~ @kathleeno #isoj
  424. RT @Brizzyc: Good paper here on #Ferguson and how journalists and activists used Twitter @amberhinsley good present…
  425. RT @aislingclare27: Social media doesn’t have the ability to fight trolling (at least in the US) because of our 1st amendment rights. @ambe…
  426. In #Ferguson, activist calls to action were not being retweeted/amplified. #isoj
  427. Discussions of “slacktivism” not usually evidence based per @hermida. #isoj
  428. In fact, slacktivism might lay seeds that will grow, but not quickly. #isoj
  429. RT @meredithclark: Uncomfortable with repeated citations of “untrained activists” and surprise that people “knew what they were doing.” #Fe…
  430. When political operatives get into the conversation and start tweeting, the memes spread. @krheim #isoj
  431. What motivates people to share news stories on FB and Twitter? @ahinsely’s research interest. #isoj
  432. How do ordinary citizens engage with gatekeeping on Twitter? @krheim #isoj
  433. My eyeballs are popping out of my head. #isoj

Richard Gingras at the International Symposium on Online Journalism

Richard Gingras, Google News

Richard Gingras, Google News

The leader of Google News gave an insightful talk about the current state of online journalism. Here are my tweets during his keynote. Appreciated his visionary thinking about the state and future of news, especially the extent to which the concept of a “news story” is being redefined and reshaped as the Internet evolves past old media paradigms (page/periodical/book) and new forms of distribution emerge that are a more natural fit for technical and social networks. One caveat: he doesn’t really have to think the same way as some of the other speakers about finding a new business model – Google already has one that works. Also note that he was feeling good about Google+. (You think Facebook has Google+ beat? We used to think that Apple was never going to be a leader.)

(Pardon my typos.)

International Symposium on Online Journalism: New approaches in engaging with the news community

ISOJ Program

Angela Lee: Audience preference and editorial judgment: a study of time-lagged influence in online news

To what extent are audiences influencing editors and journalists, and vice versa? Editorial judgement measured based on placement on paper; audience preference measured by clicks, looking at a 3-hour interval. Audience preference influences editorial decisions three hours later (which suggests editors are watching behavior and responding). However not seeing a reciprocal effect of editorial judgement on audiences.

I’m wondering if the results are influenced by assumptions embedded in the structure of the methodology for the report.

Some popular stories get pushed down on the home page, not sure why? Could be relevance of speed and immediacy – stories might be pushed down to make room for fresh content. Lee calls for input from journalists at the conference.

Alfred Hermida (who’s also been live blogging the conference, and who wrote the book on Participatory Journalism).

Sourcing the Arab Spring: A case study of Andy Carvin’s sources during the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions. How is sourcing evolving in the networked social sphere?

“We looked at sourcing, because sourcing matters.” Who we talk to as journalists affects not just what we report, but the meaning we derive from the reporting. When journalists cite non-elite sources or alternative voices, we treat them as deviant, as the others. Powerful and privileged dominate sourcing.

Carvin was doing a very different type of reporting, messaging and retweeting on Twitter. Carvin was like a “must-read newswire” (per Columbia Journalism Review). 162 sources in Tunisia, 185 sources in Egypt. Coded into categories: mainstream media, institutional elites, alternative voices, and other. Alternative voices included people involved in the protests.

Tunisia source types: alternative voices were 23%, and 32% institutional elites – but the latter were most “digerati.” Source type doesn’t necessarily give the whole picture: if you look at frequency, alternative voices 31% vs institutional elites 30%. He’s priviligeing alternative voices.

Egypt: source type inclues 39% mainstream media (journalists) vs 23% alternative voices – but looking at frequency, alternative voices 50% vs 33% mainstream media.

Here we see a reversal of traditional patterns of sources, esp with regard to protests. Alternative voices are amplified in Carvin’s reporting. On Twitter, you have an ability to bring in a broader range of voices. Carvin was turning to people on the street to get a sense what was actually happening.

Balance may be an issue here, where alternative source were more predominant.

Information cascade: Carvin may have influenced other reporting with his reporting based quite a bit on “rebel voices.”

How far does this reshape the narrative coming out of Tunisia or Tahrir Square? How does this impact sentiment?

Carvin used Twitter in a very new way, overturning the sourcing paradigm of traditional journalism. This gets to the role of journalist as curator, where journalist is a central node in a distributed network – the networked newsroom.

Mark Coddington, University of Texas at Austin, on Citizen Journalism. Who knows best? Attitudes and perceptions of citizen journalism and the news through the lens of creators and consumers.

People participating in the creation of content classified as news – this is a niche group that is largely reactionary – reacting to news sourced from traditional news, not creating their own content. They are co-opted. They are valued increasingly for the data they provide. In fact, they are increasingly valuable through creation of content.

Citizen journalist or participatory journalist content, while seen as valuable, not generally considered as valuable as professional news content.

What is good journalism – values of the profession: accuracy, autonomy, objectivity, watchdog role. Public’s tenets overlap somewhat, they view journalism from populist perspective: gives voice to the people.

Will citizen journalists and power consumers of news affirm the professional journalists’ perspective?

Distinction between content creation and consumption. More important may be type of consumption – consumers of news vs consumers of citizen journalism. Latter more positive toward citizen journalism and are not as concerned about the values of professional journalism.

Emily Metzgar: Asserting ″truth″ in political debates: A study of partisan Twitter users

Twitter influences the communication ecosystem. It performs many functions once reserved for professional journalists. It connects citizens who can organize (Shirky: headless organizations). Empowers the “former audience.” Is disruptive in some way.

The big picture: we know that Twitter is growing in popularity, increasingly used for political discourse, can be studied. How are journalistic behaviors manifesting on Twitter? How is political rhetoric used there?

The Truthy Project:
collecting massive amounts of data. Mining that data for this study. Doing hand-coded content analysis.

Basic question: if Twitter is becoming a powerful new platform for storytelling, how are users leveraging it?

Literature gathered: Twitter in context, user generated content, the Internet and politics (mother of all intervening variables), media credibility, media literacy. How do we make sense of the massive amounts of information?

Borrowed from Kovach and Rosenstiel: Blur.

Four types of journalism

  • Verification
  • Assertion
  • Affirmation
  • Special interest
  • “None of the above”

Types of political rhetoric per Benoit & Wicks.

Draw on previous work looking at analysis of Twittersphere based on partisan division.

#tcot True Conservatives on Twitter
#p2 Progressives 2.0

Snapshot of the hashtag communities.

To what extent to Twitter users produce content consistent with partisan categories?

What are the characteristics of the tweets?

  • Retweets more associated with the left.
  • Tweets tend to be scandal-oriented and emotionally charged.
  • Links tend to assist with verification.
  • Attack is the most common form of political rhetoric.

Vittoria Sacco: Curation: a new form of gatewatching for social media?

Online journalists creating new forms, shaping phenomena.

Limits: overwhelming abundance of information. Social media often lack a clear story line.

Gatewatching may replace traditional gatekeeping role.

Gatekeeping is practice of deciding why one story is important, another not. Gatewatching more participatory – point to sources rather than being a source.

Curating a story can include derivation from the source and attachment of additional information (social media etc.) provides a way to pull a story together from curated sources.

Which sources employed in social media creation?

Live blogging #ISOJ

I was actively live tweeting the International Sympsium on Online Journalism when I hit Twitter’s limit of 1000 posts within 24 hours. (I’m finding it a little hard to believe I posted that much, but that’s what Twitter’s algorithm is saying, I suppose).

I’ll do some live blogging here instead, offering this brief post by way of explanation – if you find this interesting, see the @jonl posts for #isoj and #isoj12. I’ll look for a chance to storify some of those tweets later.

bin Laden and the horserace

Osama bin Laden’s death is a complex event with many implications and potential repercussions, yet it’s been trivialized by media analysis (professional and social) that avoids going deep and focuses only on its meaning in the context of the 2012 campaign, or as Adam Hochberg notes, “just another lap in the political horserace.” Another Hochberg point that bears repeating: “…the Internet has removed the traditional filters and allowed the public
to immediately see and participate in Washington’s constant political

The future of global online journalism

(Update: Alfred Hermida blogs Vivian Schiller’s 7 reasons to be cheerful about journalism at

The evolution of networked global communication infrastructures is disrupting and changing delivery of news and the way journalists work. While some publishers have been wringing hands and tearing hair over the collapse of the business model for news publishing, others in the industry get that news, and news authority, will always be relevant, that there will always be a need and a market for informed delivery of and interpretation of facts. I just spent two days (Friday and Saturday, April 1st and 2nd) at the University of Texas’ 12th Annual Global Symposium on Online Journalism, organized by brilliant, forward-looking Professor Rosental Alves. After stewing in the juices of the future of journalism for two days, I’d like to summarize what I think I was hearing.

The future of journalism and the future of Internet are intimately related. The Internet has catalyzed a democratization of knowledge, and is (in my opinion) a force beyond our control, though there are enough discussions about controlling it in some way that I’m seeing discussions of substance about how to resist that control (which are interesting, but out of scope for this post). The democratization of knowledge and the evolution of social tools on the Internet are the two aspects of intense interest on my part that have led me to seemingly diverse projects and discussions involving futurism, politics, evolving markets, participatory medicine, and online journalism. While to some I may seem all over the map, I see a consistency in all of these: they’re all part of an Internet-driven evolution. Politics, marketing, healthcare, and journalism are all experiencing disruption and difficulty as the global online information infrastructure becomes increasingly pervasive and sophisticated.


1. This might be a good place to quote P.D. Ouspensky: “In order to understand a thing, you must see it s connection with some bigger subject, or bigger whole, and the possible consequences of this connection. Understanding is always the understanding of a smaller problem in relation to a bigger problem.”

2. I don’t see “democratization of knowledge” as an inherently wonderful thing. While I’m dedicated to open and distributed knowledge systems, I recognize the relevant issues: “a little knowledge can be dangerous,” “in the wrong hands, knowledge can be dangerous,” etc. I’m also committed to participatory or democratic systems, but with the understanding that they have significant issues – democracy doesn’t scale well, doesn’t necessarily result in the best actions or decisions for all, can be little better than “mob rule,” etc. We have to be thoughtful about these things, and attend to the down sides.)

Internet forces have undermined business models for publishing and news delivery – enough’s been said about that. The UT conference I attended looks beyond that disruption and focuses on the new reality of technology-mediated news dissemination and a new more symmetrical relationship of news organization with news reader. Readers have similar access to the means of production as news organizations, and have the expectation of an environment where they can readily provide feedback on news, if not participate in gathering and disseminationg news stories. Bloggers and small independents are breaking stories and conducting deep investigation. Journalism is becoming a partnership of the news professionals with their more or less informed audiences.

Here are some thoughts and questions I’m having, inspired by the conference (and to some extent by the Future of Journalism track at SXSW Interactive that I helped curate).

  • Today’s newsroom is a high technology operation. The new journalist understands code, and there’s a new breed of developer (in the hacks hackers, program or be programmed mode) who understands journalism well enough to be an effective partner in application development. In this context, there’s an evolution from “shovelware” to apps that effectively leverage diverse platforms, especially mobile platforms.
  • Will the web and the browser continue to be primary platform for news delivery, or will mobile apps be more prominent and effective? Or (more likely) are we looking at an ecosystem where both will be adopted and used? The web has advantages, including ubiquity, existing infrastructure, linkability, bookmarking and social tech.
  • How important are aggregation and curation vs reporting? Are aggregators practicing journalism, or “making sense of the Internet.”
  • Many publications are integrating social media, becoming more conversational. How well can conversations scale? Does this have a democratizing effect?
  • Revolution in Egypt wasn’t driven by social media alone, but also (if not more so) by Egypt’s independent press.
  • How polarized are we, how do we become less polarized, what is the relationship of news to politicization and polarization, and is there a relationship between polarization and credibility?
  • What is the impact of moving from a workflow heavily based on editing to real-time publishing models?
  • What’s the relationship of news to engagement? How can you both engage and scale?
  • New concept: “newsfulness,” or likelihood of a device to be used for news access.
  • Is public journalism a public good? Does it make more sense for investigative news organizations to be nonprofit rather than for-profit?
  • How do news organizations use, and monetize, Twitter?
  • “Gatejumping” vs gatekeeping. Twitter allows early gatekeepers to jump the gates, deliver news directly and immediately.
  • Do online journalists have more autonomy than their offline counterparts?
  • Open APIs catalyze developer communities, potentially bring new revenue potential, speed up internal and external product development.
  • How do news organizations keep up with increasing R&D demands with decreasing budgets?
  • What is the impact of pay walls, and how well will they succeed? What makes paywalls viable: scale still matters, but brand is back. Users are depending more on brand authority, advertisers are getting back to basics.

Link to my tweets from the conference.

The Future of Journalism: a conversation

With colleagues Pete Lewis, Tony Deifell, Kevin Anderson, Andrew Haeg, and Scott Rosenberg, I’m in a two week conversation about the future of journalism on the WELL. The WELL is the seminal online community; this conversation is in the Inkwell forums, where Bruce Sterling and I have our annual state of the world conversation. Inkwell usually has conversations with authors, but for this conversation we’re trying a panel format.

Here’s my latest contribution to the conversation:

Most of us who studied to be journalists were taught consistent bits about how to structure and tell a story. We learned about inverted pyramids and who-what-when-where-how, about the problem of burying the lede, about economy of writing, and about an ethic that pertains to the profession. So we share something that might feed into our world view, but then we’re shaped by all sorts of other experiences that can take us down this or that rabbit hole.

I personally had a mission to find and tell the truth, and felt that the practice of journalism didn’t cut it. I left ostensibly to create literature, and found myself doing all sorts of things that didn’t always include writing.

Back then, I wouldn’t have known the truth if it bit me on the ass, but I thought it was important. Today I have a more nuanced view; I don’t expect the truth from journalism. I expect a perspective which, when combined with other perspectives, will help me build a world view. And that will be my perspecive… and there may be glimpses of something like the “truth” I was looking for 40 years ago. But I’m lucky if I can be merely accurate.

Over years of being close to many stories covered by journalists, I never saw one account that fit what I thought I had seen myself. There were errors, misrepresentations, misinterpretations. A reporter who has limited time and access likely won’t get a story exactly right. What I like about the web is that it facilitates the public exposure of many perspectives, and through that exposure you can hope to get a sense what’s happening in the world.

In putting together talks about media and the Internet, I’ve given a lot of thought to the evolution of communication. For most of us, our expectations of media are conditioned by a deeply rooted experience of mass media as we were growing up. For us, journalism was few to many – channels were scarce and could carry only a few writers and perspectives.

Before mass media, I think we were more intimately conversational and knew far less of the world. Post-broadcast, in the Internet era, we’re conversational again, but we also have an abundance of channels and information. This is pretty new, and I’m not clear where it’s going, but (to the point about Daily) I don’t think we’re going back.

Iraq 2006: a bag of words

How to make sense of Wikileaks data? One way is visual analysis, as we see here, via Jonathan Stray of Associated Press:

Click the image for the high res version.

Stray and Julian Burgess created a visualization using data from December 2006 Iraq Significant Action (SIGACT) reports from Wikileaks. That was the bloodiest month of the war, and the central (blue) point on the visualization represents homicides, i.e. clusters of reports that are “criminal events” and include the word “corpse.” These merge into green “enemy action” reports, and at the inteface we have “civ, killed, shot,” civilians killed in battle. Stray tells how this was done, with some interesting notes, e.g.

…by turning each document into a list of numbers, the order of the words is lost. Once we crunch the text in this way, “the insurgents fired on the civilians” and “the civilians fired on the insurgents” are indistinguishable. Both will appear in the same cluster. This is why a vector of TF-IDF numbers is called a “bag of words” model; it’s as if we cut out all the individual words and put them in a bag, losing their relationships before further processing.

As a result, he warns that “any visualization based on a bag-of-words model cannot show distinctions that depend on word order.” (Much more explanation and detail in Stray’s original post; if you’re interested in data visualization and its relevance to the future of journalism, be sure to read it.)

Thanks to Charles Knickerbocker for pointing out the Stray post.

Taking a Wikileak

In my obligatory post about Wikileaks as the story du jour, I point to the great set of questions Dan Gillmor has posted in his column at Salon. These are especially lucid. I like especially Dan’s point about the character of the communications that were leaked, that many of the messages are gossip. Journalists are dutifully reporting “facts” gleaned from the leaked material without necessarily digging deeper, verifying and analyzing. Of course, they don’t have time – the information environment moves too quickly, he who hesitates is lost, accuracy be damned.

Then again, journalism is so often about facts, not truth.  Facts are always suspect, personal interpretations are often incorrect, memories are often wildly inaccurate. History is, no doubt, filled with wrong facts and bad interpretations that, regardless, are accepted as somehow “true.”

The high-minded interpretation of this and other leaks, that people need to know what is being said and done by their representatives in government, especially in a “democratic society,” is worth examining. We’re not really a democracy; government by rule or consensus of a majority of the people doesn’t scale, and it would be difficult for the average citizen to commit the time required to be conversant in depth with all the issues that a complex government must consider.

Do we benefit by sharing more facts with more people? (Dan notes that 3 million or so in government have the clearance to read most of the documents leaked – this seems like a lot of people to be keeping secrets… is the “secret” designation really all that meaningful, in this case?) But to my question – I think there’s a benefit in knowing more about government operations, but I’m less clear that this sort of leak increases knowledge vs. noise.

I’m certain about one thing: we shouldn’t assume that the leaked documents alone reveal secrets that are accurate and true. They’re just more pieces of a very complex puzzle.

Jay Rosen on the state and future of journalism

Jay Rosen has a terrific post about the state of media, beginning with this clip from the film “Network”:

Pretty timely, eh?

Jay analyzes the scene:

… the filmmakers are showing us what the mass audience was: a particular way of arranging and connecting people in space. Viewers are connected “up” to the big spectacle, but they are disconnected from one another. Or to use the term I have favored, they are “atomized.” But Howard Beale does what no television person ever does: he uses television to tell its viewers to stop watching television.

When they disconnect from TV and go to their windows, they are turning away from Big Media and turning toward one another. And as their shouts echo across an empty public square they discover just how many other people had been “out there,” watching television in atomized simultaneity, instead of doing something about the inarticulate rage that Beale put into words. (“I don’t know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the streets. All I know is that first you’ve got to get mad!”)

He goes on to ask what would happen today in response to a “Howard Beale” event…

Immediately people who happened to be watching would alert their followers on Twitter. Someone would post a clip the same day on YouTube. The social networks would light up before the incident was over. Bloggers would be commenting on it well before professional critics had their chance. The media world today is a shifted space. People are connected horizontally to one another as effectively as they are connected up to Big Media; and they have the powers of production in their hands.

Jay follows with an expansion of his comments, and concludes with a set of recommendations for today’s journalists. (The post is a must-read for journalists and news bloggers.)

There’s been too much hand-wringing over the supposed collapse of journalism as we know it, but journalism’s never been more exciting, never had the kind of tools and channels of information available today. We’re seeing, not collapse, but evolution. I’m wanting to spend more and more time with journalists, and think more and more about the relationship of professional journalism to blogging and other more or less informal information channels.

Blogging’s not dead

Social media-savvy medical advocate Regina Holliday pointed out a clueful post at Health is Social, a blog “about integrating social and digital media into healthcare.”

The post’s subject is “Healthcare Blogging: Wide Open Opportunities,” but the post itself is not just abou9t healthcare blogging. It’s a more general explanation why blogging is NOT dead, contrary to the opinion, expressed by some supposed social media experts, that “blogging wasn’t worth the effort and that nobody reads blogs.” Of course, “experts” who are totally focused on Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube argue that those platforms are “all that’s needed anymore and that … websites [including blogs] were basically useless.”

Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, among other social apps, are indeed important to consider in creating an organizational media strategy; many businesses truly don’t understand how to use them effectively. Anyone hoping to create a vital and productive Internet presence should go where the conversations are, generally Twitter and Facebook.

Note that there’s a lot of confusion and questioning about the future of the Internet. John Battelle posts about points of control, and Tim O’Reilly has posted a map to highlight the point that we’re seeing platform wars from which the Internet of the future will emerge. [Link to complete map.] Blogs are nowhere on that map, probably because blogs will be everywhere in that world, like trees spewing oxygen into the ecosystem.

So blogs and web sites will continue to be critical points of presence for individuals and organizations, where they will develop more static core content, and dynamic emerging content via blogs, to show expertise, articulate new ideas, publish news about relevant organizations or projects, etc.

Some history: Blogs catalyzed the mainstreaming of social technology by making it easy for anyone to publish online. This meant more writers and more readers, a more robust social ecosystem online, which spiraled ever greater adoption. As more people were communicating in more ways over the web, social network platforms and messaging systems other than blogs appeared and evolved – the platforms on the O’Reilly/Battelle map. The growth of interest in social connection and persistent short messaging made Twitter a hot phenomenon, and as Facebook incorporated its own form of short messaging and activity streaming, it grew like wildfire and became the mainstream platform of choice for all sorts of social activity.

A new breed of consultants emerged who were not especially active on the Internet before Twitter and Facebook came along. I would argue that these consultants have blinders on; because of their limited experience, they don’t have a deep understanding of the Internet and the broader set of potentials inherent in its still-evolving ecosystem. Much of what you hear about “social media” is noise generated by folks who’re smart enough, but have limited experience and constrained vision. Considering that, confusion around “platform wars,” anxiety over economic instability, persistent growing deluges of unfiltered information, it’s great to see a breath of fresh air like the post at “Health is Social.” In fact, I’m finding that empowered patients and their advocates are as clear as anybody about the current and potential uses of social media in their world. They’re in the middle of a revolution that depends on the Internet, democracy of information, and robust social knowledge-sharing environments (patient communities).

I have more to say another day about the importance of deep, sustained conversation, not really supported by Twitter/Facebook short messaging/activity streaming strategies.