What Learned In Digital Publishing and Why It Is Important

October 12, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Digital Publishing is an umbrella term for any posting of information online. In the world of social media, we as journalists have a duty to be up-to-date on all forms of digital publishing to relay information. An article entitled “Five social media skills millennials don’t have” look at ways we, as interns and future employees, can make ourselves more marketable.
Be wary of what you post on Twitter/Facebook/any other of those bajillion sites, because the internet is all public, all the time. Use social media to construct an almost secret identity for yourself. This great article details how young people used social media to spread the word about police brutality and the recent injustices done in Ferguson, Missouri. Social media is a way to connect and bring people together, so put your best face forward.

With an online presence, you must learn how to brand yourself. Branding oneself means creating an identity that both flatters you and also sets you apart from others. Start by purchasing a domain that is your name. This is most likely be the first Google result when your name is searched so you can use this to talk about yourself and show off what you know.
If you want to add some flair to your website, a knowledge of basic HTML is required.

There are many tutorials online that will outline the coding you need to create a functional and aesthetically pleasing website.
In Digital Publishing you will have to master coding to advanced into more involved website design such as the use of tables and CSS. Think of HTML as building blocks that construct a webpage from something dull and colorless into a functional piece of well-designed internet space.
Nobody wants to read an ugly blog, no matter how well-written the information in it is.
To pass Digital Publishing, you must become a master of coding and use it to reflect the unique topic your blog and site are covering.
Creating original media content is a great way to develop new skills in communication and it’ll look impressive on a resume. Using resources like Google Maps or Storify to create unique story-telling devices will make whatever you’re writing about aestheicallyh pleasing, as well as more information.

Having digital publishing smarts is needed to create better stories and to create a personal brand for yourself. By keeping knowledgeable on new advancements in social media, HTML/CSS, and online branding, you can stand out and create great websites and stories.

The Facts of Fact-Checking

October 6, 2014 § Leave a comment

As an editorial or writing intern, the most important skill you can learn is how to be a good fact-checker. Fact-checking is simply the checking of facts. Whoa! Blew your mind, didn’t I? But seriously, your duty is to scan a piece up for publication and check every fact in it for accuracy. You are the only defense against the publication of a lie. The reputation of the newspaper industry rests in your hands! This is only sort of an exaggeration because fact-checking is important to any publication, so take it seriously and you’ll be the real MVP of the newsroom.

For example, a few weeks ago, the UK’s Daily Mail published a story about the growing number of illiterate adults. In a hilarious-for-a-normal-person but devastating-for-a-journalist twist, they misspelled a word in the headline. This is why an army of fact-checkers in crucial to making a paper the best it can be. You must make sure your quotes are accurate, and that the math and statistics add up.
Also, proper fact-checking can seriously help prevent a newspaper from libel, which can easily cause an entire publication to crumble. Imagine what would happen if you claimed that somebody murdered somebody when they hadn’t?

You’re gonna be checking everything from all proper nouns to personal facts that the reporter observed. Fact-checking can be super awkward, and have you asking a source is they’ve ran a drug ring, or killed a guy, or has herpes. But it’s for accuracy! For precision!

The merits of fact-checking are also important when you are the writer. Make the fact-checker’s life easier by providing contact information for your sources and any links to articles you may reference. Nothing makes an intern grumpier than having them look through decades worth of archives to find an article you cited once. Also, a fact-checker have heightened senses when looking for those dastardly typos and grammatical mistakes.

If you need any more examples on why fact-checking is important, you can check out Mayor Stephanie Rawling-Blake’s twitter, where she misspelled Cal Ripken’s name. After the fact, she tweeted “I guess I’m the only one who has ever tweeted a typo?!!” Not if us fact-checkers have any say in it, Mayor.

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