On the iPad Mini, the Obama-Romney Debates, Young Readers and the Benefits of Tweeting

October 20 to October 25, 2012

The iPad proved to be a hit for journalists and now Apple is stepping into the smaller-tablet market as it unveiled the new iPad Mini last Tuesday. Those who attended the event excitedly tried the new tab, but soon concerns about its pricing surfaced. Also on Tuesday, Pew released a study on younger Americans’ reading habits finding that most young people still read and go to libraries.

Image credit: “Electronic Book” by Timo Noko on Flickr. Used under a CC BY-SA 2.0 license.

Other stories in lineup: the aftermath of the Obama-Romney debates, the benefits of Twitter, what research actually means and an overview on plagiarism.

Apple’s iPad Mini

What journalists should know about the new iPad mini
With the need for real-time reporting, technology continues to arm journalists as precious information requires to be dispatched in haste. Apple’s new tablet, the iPad Mini, is probably more appropriate for mobile journalists, given the limitations of the iPhone and the size of the iPad. But despite the iPad Mini’s attractive minimalist physique, analysts are pointing out that it’s more expensive than other small tablets like Google’s Nexus 7 and Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD. Nevertheless, accuracy and precision in reporting are solely rooted in the discretion of the journalist regardless of screen size.

Image from Apple.com.

Apple Special Event October 2012

Aside from the iPad Mini, Apple’s October 23 special event also introduced the new iMac and a new MacBook Pro. Apple executives also showed off their presentation skills, making “numbers come alive by putting those statistics into context.” Meanwhile, Google is expected to launch new products at its press event set on October 29, the same day Microsoft will launch Windows Phone 8.


Pew: Younger Americans’ Reading and Library Habits

Majority of young readers still use libraries
This week, Pew released a study of young Americans’ reading and library habits based on a survey of nearly 3,000 American young adults aged 16-29 from November 16 to December 21, 2011.

The research, which aimed to determine the reading habits and library behavior of Americans in the digital age, yielded interesting findings including the following among others:

  • 60 percent of Americans under 30 used the library in the past year
  • 83 percent of Americans aged 16 to 29 read a book in 2011 (75% read a print book, 19% read an e-book, 11% listened to an audiobook)
  • Those who read an e-book preferred reading on a computer or a cellphone over reading on Kindle or tablet.

The study also found that almost half of these young adults regularly read news, and most of them consume their news on a computer or handheld devices.  Compared with the Pew survey of older readers, younger readers are less likely to read news, but they are more likely to read different kinds of reading materials, such as books, magazines, journals, newspapers and online content.

Pew surveys young Americans on e-reading, but the data is old
The study revealed that the younger generation is still a generation of readers.  But the research, although released October 23, seemed outdated. Laura Hazard Owen of paidContent.com questioned the broadness of the age group, but emphasized that her main problem with the study is that a lot of the data is almost a year old. “On the digital front, a lot has changed over the past year, including a larger number of people reading e-books,” says Owen. Also, a post from American Libraries Magazine says that the results of the study are relatively predictable.


U.S. Presidential Debates

The third and final round of the U.S. presidential debates between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney took place at Lynn University in Florida on October 22. While journalists caught revelations and checked facts from each side, others analyzed language during the debates, which has also spawned several memes that swirled around in social media.

Binders full of Big Bird: The risk & benefits of reporting on memes
Poynter’s Amada Hess pointed out that while some of these catchphrases remain as jokes, others “have evolved from crowdsourced meme to top-level campaign message.”

‘Horses and bayonets,’ ‘Battleship’ lead presidential debate memes
“So who won? The internet, of course.”

Obama’s “is is”
Meanwhile, Bryan Garner noted Obama’s “addiction” to “is is.” Ben Zimmer looks into the three debates and examined whether Obama’s “is is” was grammatically superfluous.

Gosh, Who Talks Like That Now? Romney Does
Are you catching up on Mittism? “In Romneyspeak, passengers do not get off airplanes, they ‘disembark.’ People do not laugh, they ‘guffaw.’ Criminals do not go to jail, they land in the ‘big house.’ Insults are not hurled, ‘brickbats’ are.”


Other Stories

I don’t tolerate poor grammar. Sadly, Cheryl Conner had “pretty much come to accept that terrible grammar and writing is an aspect of the millennial workforce I would simply have to accept and endure.” Thankfully, the founders of Grammarly made her think again. How important is proper grammar and effective writing in your workplace?

Twitter benefits. TechCrunch’s Drew Olanoff shared how tweeting has affected how he communicates, online and offline. Meanwhile, a professor from Michigan State University revealed how Twitter can help boost class engagement.

Ain’t Webster’s Third grand. “[S]ome people feel a strong need for authority, any authority, and some people who already consider themselves authorities do not like to feel themselves challenged.” Veteran journalist and copy editor John McIntyre discussed how Webster’s Third threatened language and American culture.

Research ain’t easy (but it’s necessary). Nowadays, people take “research” as doing a Google search. But to actually reap the goods that research offers, you should actually do more than a keyword search.

Stop, thief! What exactly is plagiarism and how can I defend my work? Back in high school, you may have used someone else’s work without citing sources and got away with it. But now that you’re being paid to write, plagiarism can cause more damage than you think. Learn more about plagiarism and how to avoid it.

We at Project Chiron aim to encourage the use of social media for knowledge exchange and skills development. We’re not necessarily about current events; we are about relevance, credibility and innovation. With millions of content spread and shared through social media networks every day, we want to help you see what’s important so you won’t have to sweep through all your news feeds and tweets. Our weekly roundups are curated by Dan Dupale and Mina Jesuitas and edited by Kim Palanca, Paulo Formantes and Adrian Claudio.

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