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- Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge: Intro The Beginning: Our instructions; our goal (OTV as multimedia distribution platform--how?) Our Expectation:

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Presentation on theme: "- Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge: Intro The Beginning: Our instructions; our goal (OTV as multimedia distribution platform--how?) Our Expectation:"— Presentation transcript:

1 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge: Intro The Beginning: Our instructions; our goal (OTV as multimedia distribution platform--how?) Our Expectation: We were under the impression that we would jump in to an already-established new “newsroom” as managing editors. The Reality: Our semester included… Testing theory of OTV in practice (Phase I) Also required us to address ongoing issues from FS08 Researching viability (Phase II) Developing plan for future (Phase III)

2 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase I: Implementation (first two weeks) Based on the design from Fall Semester, our first course of action was to solicit help from the convergence faculty and reporting/editing students. 4804: Student & faculty hesitations (no site, no time, no ability); lack of interest. 4806: No initial interest = no available resources Missourian/KBIA: “Scouts” idea fell through due to lack of cooperation with 4806.

3 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase I: Targeting 4804 We addressed the lack of interest and general unfamiliarity by doing classroom visits to 4804, sending out emails, and establishing weekly “office hours.” Our main goal was to encourage 4804 students to bring their weekly team stories to us to refine and, eventually, publish. The professors helped by allowing extra credit opportunities for students who chose to do so. Still, we had very little interaction with them, and concluded that this was due to time restrictions (a hypothesis reinforced by our initial survey research).

4 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase I: Expanding Finding the convergence sequence somewhat unreceptive to our attempts at implementation, we expanded to other outlets in order to get our message to as many people as possible. After speaking to Tom Warhover and Janet Saidi, we began attending weekly planning meetings at KBIA/the Missourian to identify and target opportunities for long-form multimedia to tack on to other stories in the beginning stages. The Maestro meetings gave us several interesting chances which we pursued, but none of them worked out (for a host of reasons).

5 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase I: Content Despite our setbacks with editing or creating original content, we were able to solicit some excellent examples of the types of stories we are looking for that had already been finished. Through aggressive solicitation and rigorous monitoring of submitted 4804 & stories, we were able to recognize and obtain some stories that are suitable in terms of style and quality for our website. These will serve as examples for future students, as well as provide the first few rounds of content updates until a steadier system can be introduced.

6 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase I: Website (ongoing from FS08 project) As we explored ways to establish a workable framework for content submission, we also had to work on getting the site live. It was a major setback to not have a working site to show people as we tried to pitch our model. -Files: Obtain from CS department -Hosting space: Purchase & set up hosting -Re-writing files: Have former CS student rewrite code to work with new site location -Troubleshooting: Work with current CS students to troubleshoot issues such as content upload malfunction (v. important); find ways to work around limitations

7 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase II: Research We faced two gaping questions at the beginning of our work with OTV. The first: Who is our audience? Do we even have an audience? The second: What is the best way to make OTV work for the students? We decided that since OTV had been conceived primarily as an educational tool to provide otherwise unavailable multimedia opportunities, our research should focus on how best to deliver that opportunity. *Note: we recognize that audience is still an important question, and this will be addressed in the second part of the presentation.

8 Review: Survey Focus …identify ways to work with contributors …gauge hypothetical vs. real student interest …determine what motivates people to contribute voluntarily (instead of us soliciting content) Survey Population: …all J-school students are eligible since we want to open this to all sequences. We are mostly interested in the response from sophomores/juniors since they are the ones who will be around to continue it and have some experience already. - Justice Potter Stewart

9 On The Verge Phase II: Survey Sent out February 16, 2009 Responses: 194 (10% response rate, 95% confidence level) Results: Incentives--asked to rank the effectiveness of several incentives for contributing, respondents rated the opportunity for more portfolio clips as the most effective motivator (followed closely by money). Open-ended--people who left comments were overwhelmingly positive about the proposal. Possible selection bias. Time--when asked about interest level, it jumped exponentially in relation to whether the work was incorporated into class structure (see next slide)

10 - Justice Potter Stewart

11 Survey: Open-Ended Responses You're on the verge of destroying newspapers, which is incredibly despicable. I think it's a great idea to help students develop their skills and their portfolio. Sometimes I feel that unless you're specifically a convergence student, you tend to get left behind in terms of producing and creating multimedia stories, which stand out later on a resume and in a portfolio. It provides extra incentive to do high-quality work as well as another opportunity for students to get clips. If OTV can connect students of different sequences, then it would be the first of its kind in my experience! I've never been fully engaged with a student of another sequence. There should be an advertising wing where students learn how to utilize social networks and pay-per-click systems to promote the site.

12 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase II: Focus Group 1.Offer as a multimedia elective for all sequences (would need to include a training period) 2.Combine students from different sequences to teach each other the necessary skills and work together on projects 3.Pair multimedia-capable students with advanced reporting/writing classes as those types of stories already require extra legwork 4.Catch people EARLY. If you get them to think multimedia before they start reporting, it’s not much extra work to take along a camera or marantz 5.Clips are central to motivation, make sure to emphasize this is a benefit 6.Market, market, market. OTV needs to have a solid reputation and name in order for it to be worthwhile. If nobody has ever heard of it, who cares whether we publish their work?

13 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase II: In-Depth Faculty Interviews Broadcast (Kent Collins): Broadcast students held back by having “too little time to prepare and too little time to air.” Would like opportunity to explore other forms of visual storytelling (Documentary? Slideshows? Etc.). Convergence (Lynda Kraxberger):Need to create a new way to integrate convergence skills throughout the department. Need more offerings for convergence students. NEED MORE RESOURCES! Strat Comm (Margaret Duffy): Our “product” is targeting Missouri Journalism students, not financially helpful. Need to identify our specific goal/theme, research to figure out all aspects of audience (what do they want? What can we give them? Do they even exist?) THEN re-evaluate/create product. Missing 1/2 of our necessary audience!

14 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Part 2: So Where Are We Now?? “Our goal is to create an outlet where students produce and publish high-quality multimedia projects which are ‘long form’ in process, style, and development, without length specifications or time restrictions.”

15 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Part 2: Helpful Definitions Multimedia: Tells the story however it works best, no restrictions. Should be interdisciplinary with at least one audio/visual element and one written element. Long-form: Has a beginning, middle, and end (in other words, it tells a STORY! Not the same as “feature”). Includes thorough research, answers all questions, and shows full development of both characters and subject matter. Exhibits in-depth reporting! High-quality: Work that is worthy of a 4804 “A+”

16 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Part 2: Our Suggestion We believe this has become a two-tiered project and needs to continue in a way that will be develop each of these levels. 1.Research: In order to create a viable product, audience research must be done to find out what our audience wants and how we can provide it. 2.Student Benefit: Because it was originally developed with the journalism students as an “audience,” it needs to provide them with the opportunity for advanced multimedia work.

17 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Necessary Research In order to make the content that comes out of On The Verge sustainable and beneficial to the community, we need to do audience research. For this, we propose that that current concept be given to Strat Comm capstone students who will identify our target audience, research market demand, and make suggestions for how to focus future content.

18 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Advanced Course Offering Offer an advanced convergence elective, (I.e. “Advanced Multimedia Production), similar in nature to “intermediate writing.” Basic Steps: 1.(Next year): Facilitate through a TA, grad student, or as independent study with an interested professor 2.(Future): Eventually go through bureaucracy to provide necessary resources, such as hiring new faculty, etc.

19 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Advanced Course Offering Why a class? Survey responses, focus groups, and practice all strongly suggest that students do not have the time or motivation to do the work necessary for advanced, high-quality multimedia stories outside of their already strenuous course schedules. HOWEVER Everyone we spoke to expressed a higher level of interest in participating if it were incorporated into that course schedule (see survey results).

20 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Course Structure 1.Open to students from all sequences (with some restrictions--see handout) 2.Part 1--Skill Development Designated time period Topics pulled from Maestro meetings or pitched Team work, peer-to-peer teaching IMPORTANT: This time is NOT in place to “teach” multimedia. It is only intended to advance basic skills to a higher level and round off skills that may be underdeveloped. 3.Part 2--Individual Stories “Deadline” is fluid--story is finished when it’s ready to publish, not at a set date Periodic progress critiques will ensure time management & multiple “drafts” (Focus Group: “Journalism students thrive on deadline!”) Topics are not necessarily time-specific but on general issues (show examples)

21 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Work Examples Each of these stories exemplify the style, tone, and quality we want OTV to have. 1.Heartland Beats: Rob Bratney project-fools.html project-fools.html 2. Gospel Choir: a/2009/02/13/media/Archive_/index.html a/2009/02/13/media/Archive_/index.html

22 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Phase III: Class Benefits -Strong demand for an opportunity to experiment with media while still working in a structured environment. -OTV would provide the expertise to assist students with such experimental work while still encouraging solid journalistic values (storytelling, reporting, transparency, etc). -Interest in developing multimedia skills beyond what is taught in classes. System so far lacking in terms of higher-level, multimedia-specific offerings. -OTV would provide an opportunity for students to further develop the skills they gained in their newsroom experiences. For everyone who participates, OTV will offer an almost-guaranteed opportunity to publish work in a recognized, high-quality outlet. Weakness: We cannot assure a recognized outlet until it is better marketed.

23 - Justice Potter Stewart On The Verge Pt. II: Addressing Practicality Issues -Content Upload? (schedule; personnel) -Resources? (equipment; personnel) -Advanced or 4802-lite? Why? Questions?

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