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Journalism 2001 Week 2: February 4, 2008. Announcements Job Fairs Job Fairs –Link from my website:  –http://careers.d.umn.edu/

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Presentation on theme: "Journalism 2001 Week 2: February 4, 2008. Announcements Job Fairs Job Fairs –Link from my website:  –http://careers.d.umn.edu/"— Presentation transcript:

1 Journalism 2001 Week 2: February 4, 2008

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3 Announcements Job Fairs Job Fairs –Link from my website:  –http://careers.d.umn.edu/ Who you are Who you are –Freshmen, sophomores, grad –Communication, English, International Studies, Political Science, Accounting, History majors –Future activists, anchors, sports reporters, National Geographic reporters, film studies –All curious and interested in improving writing!

4 Review of last week’s news Hard News: Hard News: (murder, City Council, government, etc.) –Major local stories –Major national/international stories –Major sports stories Soft News: Soft News: (retirements, school programs, human interest) –Local stories –National/International stories –Sports stories Statesman Statesman Today’s Front Pages Today’s Front Pages Today’s Front Pages Today’s Front Pages

5 Tomorrow Minnesota plays a role in Super Tuesday through the _____________ 1. Primary poll 2. Precinct caucuses 3. Roll call

6 What’s a precinct caucus? Why is it a big deal this year? Precinct Caucus Guide: Precinct Caucus Guide: –http://www.mncn.org/mpp/index.htm Caucus finder: Caucus finder: –http://caucusfinder.sos.state.mn.us/

7 Ethics Case Good journalism requires sacrifice of political life Good journalism requires sacrifice of political life Good journalism requires sacrifice of political life Good journalism requires sacrifice of political life –By Rob Karwath, Duluth News Tribune

8 Do you agree? 1. Yes 2. No

9 On Sunday, a front-page story in the Duluth News- Tribune focused on this problem on the Fond Du Lac Reservation: 1. Housing shortage 2. Job shortage at the Casino 3. Poor reservation roads

10 U.S. Steel Corp. unveiled plans Friday to invest more than $300 million in its Keetac plant in Keewatin, making it the second-largest _______________ plant in North America. 1. silver 2. taconite 3. coal

11 After a very public, bitter dispute, Duluth and SMCD Health System have reached a tentative deal for SMDC to: 1. Plow the streets by the hospital 2. Provide free care to the homeless 3. Rent spots in the parking ramp at First St. and Third Ave. E.

12 ______________________ spoke at UMD last Thursday on foreign policy issues awaiting the next president. 1. Former Vice President Walter Mondale 2. Governor Tim Pawlenty 3. Senator Yvonne Prettner-Solon

13 The City Council decided last week to only let residents of Lakeside-Lester Park vote on whether to allow businesses to ___________________. 1. Sell tobacco 2. Serve alcohol 3. Limit parking in front of their businesses

14 The New England Patriots won the Super Bowl on Sunday. 1. True 2. False

15 Duluth City Councilor Jeff Anderson said Tuesday he will propose an ordinance canceling out last year’s ________________. 1. Budget deficit 2. Tax increase foot rental ordinance

16 Words matter!

17 Assignment due today: Using the Tuesday (1/29) Duluth News-Tribune, list the stories on the front page, local section and the sports section. Determine if the stories where selected on the traditional news elements of: Using the Tuesday (1/29) Duluth News-Tribune, list the stories on the front page, local section and the sports section. Determine if the stories where selected on the traditional news elements of: –Timeliness –Proximity/relevance –Conflict –Prominence –Consequence & impact –Human Interest Keep evaluations brief: no more than three sentences each. Microsoft Word attachment to:

18 Review: Last week’s assignment Common mistakes Common mistakes –Agreement –Possessives State abbreviations State abbreviations Numerals Numerals Let’s check AP Stylebook….

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20 Chapter 4: Summary leads Summary lead literally sums up the story in the lead, giving the reader the most important information first Summary lead literally sums up the story in the lead, giving the reader the most important information first Developed in Civil War when stories sent by telegraph Developed in Civil War when stories sent by telegraph Continued into the 1970s with wire service telegraph machines Continued into the 1970s with wire service telegraph machines

21 Inverted pyramid Put the most important news first Put the most important news first Organize the rest of the paragraphs in descending order of importance Organize the rest of the paragraphs in descending order of importance Why? Lets readers quickly scan a newspaper story and decide whether to continue reading it Why? Lets readers quickly scan a newspaper story and decide whether to continue reading it Different from short stories, novels, most feature stories Different from short stories, novels, most feature stories Easy to cut stories as needed to fit news hole Easy to cut stories as needed to fit news hole

22 The 5 Ws and H! Who? Who? What? What? When? When? Where? Where? Why? Why? How? How? Focal point determines emphasis in lead

23 No two leads the same Reporters covering the same story will write different leads Reporters covering the same story will write different leads Examples from Duluth News-Tribune and Minneapolis Star Tribune about opening of Swenson Science Building Examples from Duluth News-Tribune and Minneapolis Star Tribune about opening of Swenson Science Building

24 How to write a summary lead Usually a single sentence Usually a single sentence No more than 35 words No more than 35 words Bottom line: –Use a single sentence of no more than 35 words in a summary lead

25 Identifying the focal point Which W or H is the focal point? Which W or H is the focal point? Let’s practice: Let’s practice: –The search for a new president for the university has been temporarily postponed.  Who:  What:  When:  Where:  Why:  How: Focal point?

26 Mayor Jane Doe announced today that she will not seek re-election next year. Mayor Jane Doe announced today that she will not seek re-election next year. –Who: –What: –When: –Where: –Why: –How: Focal point?

27 In an effort to increase awareness on campus, the UMD Kirby Program Board has appointed a new coordinator, and she plans to use more advertising to bring about change. In an effort to increase awareness on campus, the UMD Kirby Program Board has appointed a new coordinator, and she plans to use more advertising to bring about change. –Who: –What: –When: –Where: –Why: –How: Focal point?

28 What to avoid Clutter leads: Clutter leads: –Too much information overwhelms readers Buried leads: Buried leads: –Don’t make the reader work too hard

29 What’s the bottom line for a summary lead? 1. Usually a single sentence of no more than 35 words. 2. Usually as long as needed to tell story. 3. Usually two sentences of no more than 35 words.

30 Billings Gazette Examples Stuck gas pedal puts automobile in bank office Stuck gas pedal puts automobile in bank office Blizzard leaves ‘nothing to feed’ Blizzard leaves ‘nothing to feed’ Flash flood leaves mess in Buffalo Flash flood leaves mess in Buffalo Buffalo flash flood leaves silt layer, ‘incredible mess’ Buffalo flash flood leaves silt layer, ‘incredible mess’ Subdivision wants county to take over private road Subdivision wants county to take over private road

31 How I write a lead When starting to write a story, I often write out all of my notes, including the direct quotes When starting to write a story, I often write out all of my notes, including the direct quotes Lead often becomes clear in the second graph Lead often becomes clear in the second graph When leaving a meeting, speech, etc., ask myself: What would I tell my friend, husband, person passing in the street? When leaving a meeting, speech, etc., ask myself: What would I tell my friend, husband, person passing in the street? What happened? What happened? Who cares? Who cares?

32 Active voice Write in active/rather than passive voice Write in active/rather than passive voice What’s the difference? What’s the difference? –In active voice, the subject performs the action expressed in the verb; the subject acts –In passive voice, the subject receives the action expressed in the verb; the subject is acted upon Active voice doesn’t mean present tense Active voice doesn’t mean present tense

33 Huh? Active voice: Subject acts Active voice: Subject acts –The dog bit the boy. –Mary will present her research at the conference. –Scientists tested the hypothesis by conducting experiments. Passive voice: Subject acted upon Passive voice: Subject acted upon –The boy was bitten by the dog. –Research will be presented by Mary at the conference. –Experiments have been conducted to test the hypothesis.

34 Summary of summary leads Don’t go with the first lead Don’t go with the first lead Avoid unnecessary words Avoid unnecessary words Avoid gobbledygook Avoid gobbledygook –Government jargon Write clearly, concisely Write clearly, concisely Use vivid verbs Use vivid verbs Use colorful words Use colorful words

35 Chapter 3: Qualities of good writing Poynter Institute for Media Studies Poynter Institute for Media Studies

36 Robert Gunning: 10 Principles of Clear Writing Keep sentences short, on the average Keep sentences short, on the average Prefer the simple to the complex Prefer the simple to the complex –KISS: Keep It Simple, Stupid! Use familiar words Use familiar words –10 th grader Avoid unnecessary words Avoid unnecessary words Use active verbs Use active verbs Write the way you talk Write the way you talk Use terms your reader can picture Use terms your reader can picture Tie in with your reader’s experience Tie in with your reader’s experience Use a variety of words Use a variety of words Write to express, not impress Write to express, not impress –Communicate!

37 Words matter!

38 Chapter 5: Organizing a news story Inverted pyramid style Inverted pyramid style –Write a terse lead of no more than 35 words –Provide background  From source or previous story –Present news in order of descending importance  Seldom chronologically –Use quotations early and throughout  After the news, separated by news and paraphrases –Use transitions  Numerically, by time, geographically, with words (also, but, once) –Do not editorialize! –Avoid “the end”  Report news until the end; often end with direct quote

39 Hourglass Style Hourglass Style –Same as inverted pyramid until the turn, a transitional paragraph to introduce a chronology of events –Used when reporting trials, police, fire news Circle Style Circle Style –Mainly for feature stories –Reporter sets scene, returns to it Block Style Block Style –News or feature stories –Often broader story, introduces many sources

40 What about the end? Don’t end with “the end” Don’t end with “the end” No editorial comment to wrap it up No editorial comment to wrap it up Just quit, or use a direct quote Just quit, or use a direct quote

41 Hard News 1 Story Assignment Work in teams to interview Duluth citizens Work in teams to interview Duluth citizens Each reporter writes own story Each reporter writes own story Interview 5-10 Duluthians Interview 5-10 Duluthians –Might not use all sources in story –List all sources, with contact info, at end of story Groups of 1 to 4: Groups of 1 to 4: –Will finalize groups next week Stories will be posted on class website: Stories will be posted on class website: –Fall Jour 2001 Website Fall Jour 2001 WebsiteFall Jour 2001 Website

42 Let’s brainstorm ideas of where Duluthians gather: UMD Dining Center/Kirby Student Center UMD Dining Center/Kirby Student Center Northlan Gaming Center Northlan Gaming Center –Lincoln Park/West End Encounter/Cozy Bar corner (2 nd Ave. E. & First St.) Encounter/Cozy Bar corner (2 nd Ave. E. & First St.) Spirit Mountain Spirit Mountain Miller Hill Mall Miller Hill Mall Community Center Community Center DECC: Hockey game DECC: Hockey game Downtown: Superior Street Downtown: Superior Street Marshal Performing Arts Center: Play Marshal Performing Arts Center: Play

43 Hard News 1 Story Pitch Due: February 13 Length of story pitch: three paragraphs, about 200 words Length of story pitch: three paragraphs, about 200 words Include the 5 Ws and H: what makes this story newsworthy Include the 5 Ws and H: what makes this story newsworthy Let’s look at the calendar:

44 In-class assignment for 2/11 To help you prepare for interviewing sources, during next week’s class you will be interviewing Lucy Kragness. She will review her background, and each student will ask at least one question. –Assume story assignment for the Statesman –To prepare, review website, write out questions in advance. 

45 Assignment for 2/11 Summary lead exercises Summary lead exercises –Steps to help you:  Identify the five Ws and H  What’s the focal point? –Determine what’s the most important to include –Reminder: Summary lead contains no more than 35 words – assignment, written in Microsoft Word, as an attachment to Read Chapters 6, 7, 10 Read Chapters 6, 7, 10

46 Today’s assignment AP Stylebook editing practice AP Stylebook editing practice Summary lead exercise Summary lead exercise –Steps to help you:  Identify the five Ws and H –Who? –What? –When? –Where? –Why? –How?  What’s the focal point? –Determine what’s the most important to include –Reminder: Summary lead contains no more than 35 words – assignment, written in Microsoft Word, as an attachment to


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