2012 National Edward R. Murrow Award winners

The Radio Television Digital News Association has announced the 2012 National Edward R. Murrow Award winners. The awards honor excellence in electronic journalism.

For the fourth consecutive year, NBC News won the Edward R. Murrow award for Overall Excellence in the network television grouping. NBC News also won National Murrows for Video Newscast and Writing.

In the same television grouping, ABC News earned three Murrow Awards in 2012 – for Video Breaking News Coverage, Video Continuing Coverage and Video Reporting: Hard News.

CBS News took the awards for Video Feature Reporting and Video Investigative Reporting in the network television grouping.

In all, 67 news organizations are being honored with 99 awards, listed after the jump.

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Check the facts: 10 tips for copy editors

Pam Nelson, with the American Copy Editors Society, has put together a nice Check list of items that ALWAYS need fact checking. A great reminder as we start the new year.
Pam readily admits her is list by no means is my list definitive. “Editors have many more things to be aware of — fairness, balance and internal consistency among them,” she writes.

1. If a date is mentioned in the story, either recent or historical, check it. Nothing will undermine credibility like misstating the date of a historic event. Even if you are almost certain that Pearl Harbor was attacked on Dec. 7, 1941, check it. If a writer refers to the Enlightenment being a part of the 17th and 18th century, check it. (I just did.)

2. If the name of a well-known person appears in a story and you have any hesitation about it at all, check it. I can’t even count the number of times I have corrected the spelling of actor Dan Aykroyd’s name. You should also check the spelling of lesser-known people if you have time or doubts.

3. If a writer uses a place name that you are unfamiliar with or that is often misspelled, check it. The copy that I read most often has North Carolina names that need to be checked. (Alleghany, not Allegheny, is one.)

4. If there is arithmetic in a story, check it. Keep a calculator handy. If a writer says that the Declaration of Independence was signed 235 years ago, check it (2011 – 1776 = 235). If a percentage change is mentioned, check it. If a person’s age appears in a story and you can check it, do. Check the birth date of well-known people and do the math.

5. If the story refers to a number of items within the story (15 steps to better health, 10 reasons to use an iPad), count the items. Make sure a well-known list (12 zodiac signs, 50 states) is complete if it is meant to be.

HERE IS THE LINK TO PAM’S COMPLETE POST:
http://grammarguide.copydesk.org/2012/01/02/check-the-facts-10-tips-for-copy-editors/

COPYPOINT: Using age in your copy

Those of you who have worked closely with me know I am a stickler about writing.  We must write clear and easy-to-understand sentences.  

Sometimes, we sabotage that effort with the words we choose.  That’s why, from time to time, you will receive COPYPOINTS from me.  Here is the first:

 Let’s avoid starting sentences with the age of the subject of the sentence. i.e. “26‑Year old Kevin Hirschfield was shot to death while..”

 Its a non‑starter.

No one talks like that. (Except on TV and at the police station!)

If age is important, take the time to explain why. 

Example: Hirschfield, who is 26, is much older than the teens who attacked him.

 Unless someone is very old, or very young, their age probably can be relegated to a place deeper in the sentence, or the story.

READ THE ENTIRE COPY POINTS SERIES

Monetize Your Site With Video – From Mashable.com

Another great bunch of tips from those folks at Mashable.com
Februay 1009 – 1:39 pm PDT – by Kaleil Isaza Tuzman
For both startups and Fortune 100 companies, getting on board with online and mobile video is increasingly key to attracting and engaging a fickle audience. The next generation of big-time consumers (those under 18) are already more likely to be watching video on a computer or mobile phone than they are
on a traditional television set.
blog it

OTNB: A Brain Teaser for You

Many years ago in a small Indian village, a farmer had the misfortune Of owing a large sum of money to a village moneylender. pebblesThe Moneylender, who was old and ugly, fancied the farmer’s beautiful daughter. So he proposed a bargain. He said he would forgo the farmer’s debt if he could marry his Daughter. Both the farmer and his daughter were horrified by the Proposal.
So the cunning money-lender suggested that they let providence decide the matter.

He told them that he would put a black Pebble and a white pebble into an empty money bag. Then the girl would Have to pick one pebble from the bag.

1) If she picked the black pebble, she would become his wife and her
father’s debt would be forgiven.

2) If she picked the white pebble she need not marry him and her
father’s debt would still be forgiven.

3) But if she refused to pick a pebble, her father would be thrown into Jail.

They were standing on a pebble strewn path in the farmer’s field. As They talked, the moneylender bent over to pick up two pebbles. As he Picked them up, the sharp-eyed girl noticed that he had picked up two
Black pebbles and put them into the bag. He then asked the girl to pick A pebble from the bag.

Now, imagine that you were standing in the field. What would you have done if you were the girl? If you had to advise her, what would you have told her?

Careful analysis would produce three possibilities:

1. The girl should refuse to take a pebble.

2. The girl should show that there were two black pebbles in the bag
And expose the money-lender as a cheat.

3. The girl should pick a black pebble and sacrifice herself in order
To save her father from his debt and imprisonment.

Take a moment to ponder over the story. The above story is used with the hope that it will make us appreciate the difference between lateral And logical thinking. The girl’s dilemma cannot be solved with Traditional logical thinking. Think of the consequences if she chooses the above logical answers.

What would you recommend to the Girl to do? Well, here is what she did ….

The girl put her hand into the moneybag and drew out a pebble. Without Looking at it, she fumbled and let it fall onto the pebble-strewn path Where it immediately became lost among all the other pebbles.
“Oh, how clumsy of me,” she said. “But never mind, if you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked.”

Since the remaining pebble is black, it must be assumed that she had Picked the white one. And since the money-lender dared not admit his Dishonesty, the girl changed what seemed an impossible situation into a extremely advantageous one.

MORAL OF THE STORY:

Most complex problems do have a solution. It is only that we don’t attempt to think.

The lesson of the Inauguration for local news

Obama Pennsylvania Ave.We don’t have numbers yet, but predictions are that Obama’s inauguration will be the largest television event in history. Here are my Outside The News Box thoughts on this historic occasion.

Our future is in television events
From covering big events like Super Bowls and Inaugurations, to our approach to Breaking News, we have got to elevate our presentation to produce a steady stream of “events that viewers will find engaging, exciting, and wonderfully unpredictable. We must be “live” on all our platforms. Our future is about “currency” and “urgency”

Social Networking is still more about engaging than numbers
Alot of people are engaging us in new and exciting ways, but their numbers are still dwarfed by television viewing. Facebook and CNN provided a great service today, allowing me to watch and network at the same time. Twitter had its biggest day ever. But I saw as many “crash and burns” as I saw success stories. I really just wanted to sit and soak up the history. That said, the marketing of social engagement tools says a lot about your organization and servicing this audience is IMPORTANT brand management.

We have got to hire smart people
Today, it was Charles Gibson on ABC who never seemed to be at loss for words. As importantly, he knew when to stop talking. I was in a small golf community last week during the Emergency landing in the Hudson River. The young talent blathered on, repeating themselves, and offered little insight.
We have got to identify new talent, mentor them, give them opportunities to exercise their skills. Insist they know the news of the day, every day! They need that knowledge to ask relevant questions and fill in the gaps as the story plays out.

It takes a plan
We can’t rely on good people to just wing it. When we are executing our latest event we need to planning the next one. Plan, De-brief, then Repeat. Planning helps eliminate repetition, encourages confidence, and identifies where we need to improve.

Your thoughts?

OTNB IDEA: The Difference between Journalism and Media

Thinking Ahead: The Difference between Journalism and Media
By G. Stuart Adam – as published on poynter.org

Last month, Kimn Swenson Gollnick, a graduate student at the University of Iowa, posed some questions about the future of journalism to G. Stuart Adam, a journalism professor at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. Adam, a Poynter affiliate, wrote Journalism: the Democratic Craft with Roy Peter Clark. This is an edited version of their exchange.

Kimn Swenson Gollnick: How can newspapers survive? What is the future for students studying journalism?

G. Stuart Adam: I suggest that in order to reflect on the future — and to encourage a more sanguine view of the situation — you distinguish between journalism as a cultural practice, on the one hand, and media, on the other. The term “media” blends (and blurs) concepts of culture and technology. When used as a synonym for journalism, the term “media” pushes technology into the foreground and conceals the fact that “journalism” is one thing and “media” is another. The latter refers mainly to technologies of various effects and uses.

With this distinction in mind I encourage you to think of journalism as a form of expression or brain work that includes making news judgments, gathering evidence, constructing narratives and making sense of things. It is a method of capturing and representing the world of events and ideas as they occur. While there is no doubt that the journalistic method developed in newspapers, that it established itself later in the broadcast media and that it is media-dependent, it is nevertheless a distinctive form of expression on which modern democratic societies depend. Now it is surfacing in the Internet. So the future of journalism, while dependent on media, is not wholly dependent on newspapers.
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