Social media as news platforms

socialmediaJournalist Elizabeth Jane Cochran, under the pen name Nellie Bly, once said “energy rightly applied and directed will accomplish anything.”

In celebration of Nellie Bly’s 151st birth anniversary last May 5, Google presented a Doodle tribute showing her milestones that left a legacy in the field of investigative journalism and in the world.

The field of journalism has changed drastically over the last two decades, particularly due to the Internet. The emergence of social media platforms will have an impact on the future of journalism and communication as the new source of news and as the vital tool for information dissemination. Examples of social media-influenced journalism in the last two weeks include:

 

  • In Philippine news, Mary Jane Veloso was granted a last-minute reprieve on her execution for the crime of drug trafficking in Indonesia. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, one of the top three newspapers in the country, however, published an article with an erroneous headline implying that Mary Jane had died. Here is a blog post reflecting on how this incident shows what is happening to journalism today.
  • The Baltimore riot has been the topic of major U.S. headlines because of the violence, the looting, and the city’s state of emergency. Here is the back story and timeline on Freddie Grey’s death, the investigation on six police officers involved, and the alleged police brutality that led to the riot.
  • Al Jazeera used their social media app unit AJ+ for real-time reporting on the Baltimore riots.

 

Here are other posts in our reading list:

Image: “Social Media” by Yoel Ben-Avraham (Flickr). Used under a Creative Commons (CC BY 2.0) license.
Ditto is a fortnightly collection of stories on publishing, media, communications, and topics that concern editorial professionals from the most credible sources on the Web. We hope to educate young professional writers and editors about industry standards, breakthroughs, and trends, among other things. Usually, you’ll find news and commentaries in here, but from time to time, we also feature tweets, visuals, games, freebies, and other fun but useful stuff that caught our eye.

On time management, emotional intelligence, and developing habits

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It’s the second quarter of the year. How are you doing with your goals and resolutions? Our picks for this week include a book review on how you can get yourself to develop habits that will help you with your goals, as well as readings on managing your schedule so you can leave work on time and prioritizing using psychological distance. Check out:

Other posts of interest:

Image: “time” by Sean MacEntee (Flickr). Used under a Creative Commons (CC BY 2.0) license.
Ditto is a fortnightly collection of stories on publishing, media, communications, and topics that concern editorial professionals from the most credible sources on the Web. We hope to educate young professional writers and editors about industry standards, breakthroughs, and trends, among other things. Usually, you’ll find news and commentaries in here, but from time to time, we also feature tweets, visuals, games, freebies, and other fun but useful stuff that caught our eye.

On change, writing apps, overcoming creative block, pet peeves, and more

“Change is constant. Change is inevitable.” This applies to language, writing, and journalism too, especially in this age of technology. Perhaps at one point — when we were being sticklers for “proper” usage — we have corrected someone’s misuse of hopefully, literally, or enormity. However, people’s use of these words has changed, and we understand what they mean nonetheless, which is the point of language. Technology has also evolved, and it is changing how we write, edit, check for facts and plagiarism, and think about business. Here, we list recent stories on these changes, along with some creativity tips and fun reads.

 

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“Tech” and other skills media folks need in the age of the Web

Journalists, editors, and writers may not need to know how to make software or assemble and maintain hardware, but the rise of the Internet and related technology has made it necessary for media folk to “get into tech.”  There’s much to learn about distribution platforms as well as modes of content-sharing and content ownership brought about by the Web that was not anticipated by the old journalism or mass communication curricula; there may be a bit of catching-up to do. This is not to say, though, that “classic” editorial skills are out the window.  Specialized skills remain valued and valuable through time. Like other professionals, those in media just need to understand and manage changes in the world and career environment that are taking place.

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What else can we do with our strengths?

March 1 to March 14

 

As technology continues to change the media, publishing, and communications landscapes, the importance of human editors is being challenged. The automation of the editing process, the pressure to break stories first, and the underselling of freelancers threaten our value to the organizations and the industries we serve.

We know that being an editor is more than just correcting grammar, spelling, and punctuation. But how do we show that to organizations and to consumers of information? In this issue of Ditto, we explore other ways we can use our editorial skills.

 

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Acronym Morph: What’s an Editor to Do?

h/t Copyediting.com

AMA Style Insider

Sometimes we see things out of the corner of our eye. Then we think, “Did I really see that?” Lately, I’ve had that experience with certain acronyms morphing from all capital letters (eg, UNESCO) to initial capital letters (Unesco).

When acronyms drop their periods, I take it in without a second thought—it looks cleaner to me, someone used to the omission of periods in most acronyms from years of editing using the AMA Manual of Style. But this move from all-caps to only an initial cap jarred me, once I stopped and looked it in the eye. I was puzzled, too, by the pattern (or lack of one) behind this shift.

A little investigation seemed in order. The AMA Manual of Style distinguishes between acronyms and initialisms1 and indicates that periods are usually not used with them. But there is no mention of an all-cap or initial-cap style or…

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Editing and Etiquette | BaltimoreSun.com

 

In editing, etiquette amounts to something more than anixety over the use of the fish fork or the togs to wear to the tennis court. Etiquette in a larger sense than table manners involves the social compact with the reader. Plagiarism and fabrication, which we are obliged to be alert for, violate the compact with the reader, who depends on the information we edit to form accurate perceptions of the world we live in and to make informed decisions.

Editing itself is a series of decision, of judgments. Each day I am at the paragraph factory I make decisions by the dozen, by the score, by the hundredweight. They are prescriptive: What should we say here? How should we say it? Our compact with the readers of The Baltimore Sun is that we offer them information that has been reported, verified, and edited, the editing being the stage devoted to establishing clarity.

via Editing and etiquette – baltimoresun.com.

Image from original post.

Today’s Chiron Collective: May 9, 2012

Today’s edition of the Chiron Collective picked up several writing and editing tips. We have posts on rules for writing suspense fiction and thrillers, why we should be wary of compound words, confusing “expatriate” with “ex-patriots,” and the “frat-boy lexical problem.”

Also, Pam Nelson shares a new quiz featuring usage distinctions from The Economist Style Guide.

Check out our top stories on Paper.li.

via Today’s Chiron Collective.

The Business of Editing: Schedules and Client Expectations

h/t Copyediting.com

An American Editor

A couple of months ago, I was hired to edit a new medical text. The publisher estimated the manuscript to be 2500 pages and wanted a 4-week turnaround with a medium-level edit. When I received the files for the entire project, I did a page count; the client had greatly undercounted the manuscript size. Instead of 2500 ms pages, the actual count was 5300 pages. (Why the disparity? Because, for example, in the original manuscript figure legends were in 7-point type and chapters had 70+ legends; tables and references [of which there could be several hundred in a chapter] were in 8-point type; paragraphs were single spaced.) In addition, it had to be conformed to AMA style; almost nothing conformed to AMA style as presented.

I advised the client and suggested that a 10-week schedule would be more appropriate. I was told to start the editing and the client would get back to…

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