Monthly Archives: May 2011

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Periodic Table of Storytelling

Will someone please buy me this? I would be your best friend. Promise.



Quote: Journalism can rise again.

Journalism can rise again. Its power will be less about the production of specific information, rather it will filter the tsunami of the world’s information. There will be more emphasis in sorting, selecting, editing, aggregating, and linking elements between events, ideas, and people. Those at the top will provide the best information at the right time to those who need it. We are betting there will be an augmented journalism that is more transparent and humble in its practices, business, investigation, sources, connections, etc.

To accomplish this feat, journalism will have to reinvent itself. Everybody fumbles, but its not longer time to question whether to let the train pass us by or just put one foot out the door. It’s time for innovation for transformation. It’s not “adapt or die,” rather “change or die.”


— Eric Scherer

Monopoly: Social media edition

Hah. I love everything about this board. Great article, too.




Frank Pasquale ponders how the internet is increasingly converging through Facebook, Google and Apple, and wonders what values drive their decision making.

Photo: Monopoly — Social Media Edition via Emilie Ogez, Flickr/Creative Commons.

The Case—Please Hear Me Out—Against the Em Dash

Link : The Case—Please Hear Me Out—Against the Em Dash

Thank you, Noreen.

I do adore my beloved em dash, but it’s important to use it correctly. I believe this is one of those “sentence tools” that are supposed to stay in the “grammar toolbox,” according to my favorite journalism professor at Auburn. Some times, it’s best to find another way to write the sentence instead of using an element the wrong way.

Grammar nerd moment over.

Farewell to a fantastic publication

As of June 2011, I will be stepping down as editor of Small Business Insight. This is my farewell column to run in the next issue of SBI of Hampton Roads.


There’s a sad sort of clanging from the clock in the hall and the bells in the steeple, too.

I’ll spare you the rest of the song, but please believe I know every word to that song, and just about every other word in the movie, The Sound Of Music. Little tidbit: I used to pop in the VHS almost every night when I was a little girl and would be asleep by middle of the first tape.

The song “So Long, Farewell,” is one of the more well-known jingles in movie history.

At this point in my tenure with Small Business Insight, it appears to be the bittersweet song that is playing in the background. As of June 1, I will be stepping down as editor of the magazine.

Just like Marta in the movie, I truly do hate to go and leave this pretty sight.

This magazine has provided incredible opportunities for me and I have met amazing people along the way. I am very thankful and blessed for the great friends who have been with SBI from the beginning, and believe I’m truly a better person for having known them. (Looking at you, Paul D., Jackie, Shannon, Al, T.J., Art, Chin and you Dozier kids.)

I can’t wait to see where SBI goes in the future. The SBI Owners Council is an exciting part of this organization and I’m thrilled to see it coming together not just in Hampton Roads, but in Raleigh, NC, as well.

Events like SBI Young Guns and the SBI Minerva Awards highlight the who’s who in top business leaders in our area, and I feel like an E! correspondent on the red carpet when I get to shake hands with these exceptional people.

The look and feel of the magazine has improved dramatically, and there’s no stopping that. The creativity and talents of our design editor, Amanda Elliott, has really taken our image to the next level, and I have no doubt it’s going to improve after each edition.

It’s true. Unlike Brigitta, I’m not glad to go, but I do look ahead to a bright future. Taking my experiences with this great magazine, I feel confident I can go anywhere, and I know I will have a few cheerleaders here cheering me along the way.

Thank you all for the memories and lessons learned.

So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, adieu.

And, of course, good bye.

See you in a different place at a later date, hopefully!


Our conversation about my life.

I know I’ve been quiet. The truth of the matter is that husband has been shoving me out the door all week with a beverage cooler and mindless fiction to enjoy my days on the beach.

But Jess… What about work? Aren’t you earning a living like a responsible American citizen?

Nope. Actually, this entire week I haven’t done a thing. Probably because I’ve been officially unemployed.

Dude. Seriously? What happened??? Did you get FIRED?

Heck no. I’m awesome. And awesome people don’t get fired. I quit.

You just quit? Like, you didn’t even give a two week notice? That’s pretty unconventional, unless something scandalous happened. (By the way, that was pretty egotistical of yourself to call yourself awesome. Kind of out of character, Swink.)

I assure you, there was no scandal. I didn’t give a two-week because I knew I wouldn’t work anyway for the next two weeks because we are already past deadline, and if anything needs to be done, I will happily do it. Always willing to extend a helping hand, I am. Not worth two weeks, salary though. I’m happy to help fo’ free.

Geez. What gives? You loved that job! You were an editor of a pretty great little magazine. Heck, you even named your Tumblr “Ramblings of a Young EDITOR.” Are you feeling alright?

Yeah, I’m fine. It’s just that I can’t be an editor of SBI while I WORK AT WAVY NEWS 10. BOOOOOOM!

Oh, you. You really had me going. So… you mean, WAVY-10 the news station? First in HD? Chopper 10? WAVY 10 On Your Side? DON SLATER???

Yep. That’s the one.

Well gosh. That’s just peachy. What will you be doing?

This is an interesting question. I originally applied for a webdesk editor position, but they threw my hat into the ring for the position I accepted as well. It’s basically 60 percent keeping the website updated with news and developments and 40 percent “special projects.” This just means that my Master’s degree will be at work as I apply some new media strategies and news packaging ideas to the already awesome, award-winning site, and the Fox affiliate

Sounds kinda amazing.

Oh, I know. (Don’t you mean awesome???)

Psh. What’s your job title?

Oh, I don’t know. The first part of it is “Web Producer,” but since the position is new and ever-evolving, I’ll get the official official title when I start.

And when is that?


Awesome. Are you excited?

Duh. I’m beyond pumped.

Are we going to end up seeing you on TV wearing a bright red suit, big hair and bright red lipstick???

That’s a visual I wouldn’t force on anyone. I’m a behind the scenes chick. But I’m pretty sure if you put a question mark on the teleprompter, I would read it.

I’m Ron Burgandy?


Street view storytelling

I love this. There are so many different story opportunities where this would make an excellent feature. The idea of literally putting readers/viewers where you are reporting is easier than ever, and should be taken advantage of whenever possible.

Great job, guys.



In a Washington Post investigation published Saturday, reporter Debbie Cenziper chronicled the waste and mismanagement of affordable-housing projects across the nation. Cenziper, as part of her reporting, visited sites where construction and renovation projects funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development had been delayed or abandoned. For our part, we needed to find a way to take Post readers to these locations. Enter Google Street View.

We used the photographic mapping service to look up some of the project sites and realized that we could now visually confirm Cenziper’s findings for Post readers. Many of the addresses showed panoramas of overgrown brush, piles of dirt or undeveloped, grassy fields. After Cenziper got in touch with developers on the projects, we created a graphic on that featured the Street View shots, the funding amount for each project and a summary of each project’s history. We used Street View for local sites, such as Temple Hills, and sites across the country, such as Anaheim, Calif.

The Google Maps API makes adding Street View panoramas simple and intuitive, even if you have little or no Javascript knowledge. Check out this page for more information on how to do it.

Read More

Journalism doesn’t have to be your first love…

Journalism doesn’t have to be your first love… or your only love. You can come to it in desperation, because you can’t think of anything better to do with your life, that it’s this or the abyss. But once you get going… it helps if you love it. There are different things to love. Some of you, no doubt, have learned to love the spotlight, you want to be the narrator… the on-camera, the presenter, the voice, the big byline. Others of you may choose producing, designing, managing, staying out of sight, shaping the product. Some of you like speed. Find something, get it right, get it on, go home. Some of you like it slower: go somewhere, hang out, mull it over, write a draft… take your time… What you love can differ, but the love, once it comes, that feeling of waking up with a kind of eagerness, a crazy momentum that pushes you into your day, an excitement you realize you don’t ever want to go way… that’s important. If you don’t have that feeling, maybe you’re lucky. You can lead a more sane life. But if you do – I say congratulations. You have what it takes to begin.


— Robert Krulwich made the May 7 commencement speech to Berkeley Journalism School’s Class of 2011.

(For his complete speech, click here.)

Journos everywhere need to read this in its entirety… one of the best reads I’ve read in a long long time.

Hyper-Local Location Based Social Networking

Link: FWD Thinking: Hyper-Local Location Based Social Networking

Neat neat concept. Will be interesting to see how it pans out, though. It seems like an awful lot of manpower and resources. Will be interesting to see how it’s credibility is earned. Love the blend on social + local.

The new journalism is working with 2,000 sources

Link: The new journalism is working with 2,000 sources

…very well-put post about how social media and journalism isn’t all about posting, tweeting and tracking analytics.

It’s about listening and having access to thousands of sources at your fingertips.

I like this post because it unknowingly hints at the personal branding of journalists, and how regardless if your article is in print, your clip is on the 6 o’clock news or your tweet is on Twitter, you will be the authority of information. In an age where rumors run rampant, its imperative that journalists skim the rumors off the top and spend time aggregating  and tracking stories that make the perfect pot of stew.