Digital Journalism

COM466 – University of Washington

Week 02- Wednesday

More On The Changing Media Environment


  • Housekeeping
  • Discussion – Reading
  • Discussion – Twitter Assignment
  • Lab – WordPress


  • Only three four of the five groups (18 of 22 students present) posted a comment about “tips for news consumption” on Monday’s blog post. :-/
  • Class Time Commitment: a reminder that according to UW, 5-credit hour class should require about 15 hours a week (on average) including class time. This means about 10 hours a week outside of class. The nature of the multimedia assignments in this class is such that you will not be able to complete them in a single marathon session each week.
  • Class Computer Skills Requirement: the class requires basic computer skills and an adventurous spirit. We will be learning basic fundamentals of three software tools (Audacity, Photoshop, MovieMaker/iMovie) and one web-tool (Slideshare). You must be comfortable with self-directed exploration of new software.
  • Deadlines, per the syllabus and oral instruction:  This is a journalism class. Deadlines are part of the journalism ethic/culture. Late assignments are not accepted after this week. Assignments are detailed on the blog post for each class session, and I review the assignments each session, where there is opportunity to ask questions during class.

Reading Discussion

In small groups, discuss last week’s readings about the economics of the news business. Find three points of agreement. Brainstorm possible revenue streams. Have someone in the small group act as recorder and summarize your findings in a comment on this blog post; list the names of the people in the group. We’ll regroup and have a short class discussion.

Twitter Discussion

  • The art of writing engaging tweets
  • Summary – Twitter Follows : Spot check list with TwitterStats/Klout
  • How did you find the journos to follow? How did you decide WHO to follow?
  • How often are you checking into Twitter timeline?
  • What did you learn while pulling together the link tweets? (note: most posts can be much shorter!)

Lab: WordPress

  • What is a content management system? Why WP is “more than a blog.”
  • Headline reminder (must have, clever writing)
  • Design -> no two column content themes, please (such as Under the Influence)
  • COMMENT MODERATION! (someone still has moderation “on”)
  • What are tags? (screen grab)
    Dashboard -> Posts -> Tags
  • About : edit the placeholder copy and tell us something about yourself.
    Dashboard -> Pages
  • Sidebar widgets: almost all themes have sidebars for info. Your blog should contain these widgets (at a minimum): categories, archives, meta
    Dashboard -> Appearance -> Widgets (screen grab)


Due Monday at noon

  • Reflective reading post based on CH 1, CH5  Journalism 2.0 (pdf)
  • Complete this NewsU tutorial on ethics

    Here are links to the two “404” articles on the Online News page:

    On the Ethics of Linking: The Indianapolis Story

    Online Ethics: The Beginning Of the End of the Ad Hoc Era?

    Blog post answering these questions:

    • Module 1 (Why … Accuracy and Fairness) — which of the six case studies resonated the most with you and why? which has the most relevance to this course and why?
    • Module 2 (Doing… ) — what can you do to incorporate the 10 questions into your work this quarter? where might your “gut” steer your wrong?
    • Module 3 (Guiding…) — how might digital transparency impact these principals? what are some examples (other than these three) of online ethical issues?
  • Continue tweeting (adding the #com466 hashtag) … at least five “link tweets” and one RT by noon Monday. No need to blog them!
  • Twitter: you must upload a photo of yourself (no “avatars” or Twitter “egg”) and complete your bio.

Filed under: Class Notes

6 Responses

  1. slmarie says:

    Stephanie Long, Rowdy Sargent, Mia Cole and Marci Maciaszyk

    1. Newspapers are declining.
    2. Due to the Baby Boom generation, newspapers probably still have 20 years.
    3. Advertising is not keeping the newspapers alive.

    How to keep newspapers alive:
    • Syndicated model.
    • User generated free contact.
    • Make the newspaper more like magazine content.
    • Newspapers could have a barcode for stories, coupons and discounts so that this information can go directly to a readers phone and makes for less space in a paper. Advertisers would still pay for this service and they might pay more because it would link readers into a bigger pool of their products, such as linking to their website and getting information about their products.
    • Not have the newspaper delivery.
    • The newspaper could print directly to your printer at work.
    • The newspaper would give a little printer as a courtesy of subscribing to the paper, kind of like a Comcast box and then you can print your own paper.

  2. Group discussion – Reed Astley, David Liberty, Kanny, …

    3 points of agreement
    1. No one under 40 is buying print newspapers anymore
    2. Newspapers have to innovate in order to stay relevant
    3. No one is going to pay for something they can get for free somewhere else

    Revenue Streams
    Internet only – save money on paper
    More advertising on sites
    Innovate content
    More hyperlocal content that people might actually pay for.

  3. sespanol says:

    Sarah, Graham, John H, Amber

    Agreed on:
    -Financial piece. Newspapers needing to reinvent themselves and find new business model.
    -Online ads take away from content.
    -Do not want to pay for online subscriptions.
    -Print delivery in decline and cost of paper is only for the delivery.

    Possible revenue streams:
    -Product sponsoring.
    -Customer content. Picking and choosing what you want to read and pay for it.
    -Partnership with services such as Groupon to make money. Co-op.
    -Branch out and offer other services online. Possibly electronic transactions.

  4. Raanan Schnitzer says:

    Raanan, Josh, Ian, Bryden

    Agreed on:

    1. Supply and Demand is causing the print media crisis.

    2. Print Media is not adapting fast enough

    3. Print Media needs to restructure and reinvent itself.

    Possible Revenue Streams

    1. Print media should consider variations on the Freemium model

    2. Print media needs to use technology and make its content

    a) more interactive

    b) target niche markets

    3. Print media can sell its content to niche publications and reinvent itself as a content farm

    4. Print media should consider kidnapping the news and ransoming it back. Hey, it’s working for the Somali pirates. Just kidding, we do not condone the kidnapping and ransoming of celebrities, political figures, and or any news related fodder.

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