WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Sun - 21.01.2018


editorial quality

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WikiLeaks has struck again, with the biggest intelligence leak in history. Several weeks ago, WikiLeaks received about 91,000 reports concerning raw information of the war in Afghanistan. In an unprecedented decision WikiLeaks decided not to immediately release the highly classified reports, but instead shared its findings first with the New York Times, The Guardian, and the Der Spiegel.

It can be speculated that these three newspapers where chosen as a prestigious validity check on the reports, as they are top media outlets in the US, the UK, and Germany respectively. Conversely The Telegraph criticizes WikiLeaks for its supposed stance on being politically neutral while only releasing the reports to left-wing newspapers.

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2010/07/wikileaks_floods_again_with_the_help_of.php

Author

Stefanie Chernow

Date

2010-07-26 17:40

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Cardiff school of Journalism research fellow Andy Williams has written a highly critical piece on Trinity Mirror, in light of its management of two national Welsh papers, the North Wales' Daily Post and South Wales' Western Mail, which he describes as in "serious (some suggest terminal) decline." He argues that Trinity Mirror is more concerned with generating profits for shareholders than providing high-quality news.

He asserts that both newspapers have lost large amounts of readers, and comments that "Trinity seems to display little concern that readers are abandoning its titles in droves" and that "the effect falling circulations have on the quality of the Welsh democratic debating chamber could not be further from their minds."

However, profits at Media Wales, TM's subsidiary that owns the Western Mail along with other more local titles, have been consistently high, according to Williams. He claims that these have been generated by cutting staff (by 41% in the last decade) and offering those who remain "extremely low" pay.

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newspaper/2010/07/trinity_mirror_comes_under_criticism_for.php

Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2010-07-21 17:22

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The culture and technology surrounding online journalism creates an increasingly fast-paced work environment with expectations to get the news out first. While editors need to keep up with these relatively new trends, problems arise concerning how these requirements for the industry may push a higher turnover rate. The New York Times recently covered the effects of employee burnout at Politico, where an April fools joke of requesting the staff to start work at 5 am was taken seriously by the journalists.

Turnover and burnout of newspaper employees may be not just a result of increased pressures in the business, but rather the responses in tracking progress. Several news organizations publicize which authors receive the most hits on their webpages and pay the journalists accordingly. This method does work as positive reinforcement, yet it also creates unnecessary embarrassment for other journalists who are struggling to write articles that will further impress the readers, and there is a danger that journalists will succumb to writing solely about popular topics. The New York Times also commented that some reporters are encouraged to work nonconventional hours. Employees at Politico commonly receive emails before dawn criticizing them if another newspapers breaks a story first.

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2010/07/_employee_burnout_poses_a_threat_to_jour.php

Author

Stefanie Chernow

Date

2010-07-20 17:47

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On Monday, Yahoo! announced the forthcoming release of the first edition of its "Yahoo! Style Guide: The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World". The 528 paperback tome will cover stylistic suggestions for a variety of digital formats and issues running the gamut from mobile content publishing tips to search engine optimization techniques. The guide also promises to address the traditional topics of grammar, punctuation and sourcing as applicable to web-based publications. A sampling of basic articles (e.g. an introduction to HTML code) and resources (e.g. a word-list for tech jargon) has already been made available on the guide's free companion website.
Chris Barr, senior editorial director of Yahoo!, explains his company's surprise offering. "The growth of online communication is only accelerating, but there hasn't been a comprehensive manual of online editorial best practices to guide writers and editors. As the volume of Internet content grows and people become increasingly dependent upon clear and concise content, Yahoo! is pleased to be able to share these principles for writing for an online audience that we have amassed over the course of our 15-year history."

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2010/06/yahoo_set_to_publish_digital_style_guide.php

Author

Colin Heilbut

Date

2010-06-29 12:47

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The Independent has switched over its blog publishing platform from LiveJournal to WordPress, in an effort to "raise standards," Journalism.co.uk reported yesterday.

This move by the newspaper follows the recent introduction of Disqus system on its website to improve its comments system, by requesting the real names of commentators, according to Journalism.co.uk. The new-look blog bears resemblance to its website and the blogs from independent journalists, columnists and group blogs are now more closely integrated.

For more on this story please see our sister publication www.sfnblog.com

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newspaper/2010/06/the_independent_switches_blog_publishing.php

Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2010-06-10 10:21

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The Sunday Times editor, John Witherow, told his staff at a meeting last Thursday that print-based business is unlikely to be viable in the future. Witherow said the future of news is "digital" and announced the launch of a Sunday Times iPhone app soon, according to Guardian.

This move comes as the editor of the Times, James Harding, announced last Thursday at a meeting with his staff, that the Times would be slashing its editorial budget by 10% and would also be accepting a number of voluntary redundancies that could leave up to 50 journalists without a job. At the time, Harding also said that the Sunday Times would be cutting its budget by 10% and possibly eliminate up to 30 jobs.

At a meeting with his editorial staff, Witherow confirmed the budget cut and cited an advertising downturn as the cause of the newspaper's woes.
Although printed news was unlikely to be viable in the near future, Witherow said that the "future was digital" and announced the launch of a Sunday Times iPhone app in the future to help boost revenue. No details on when this iPhone app would be expected to launch were given.

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newspaper/2010/05/sunday_times_confirms_staff_cuts_and_pla.php

Author

Maria Conde

Date

2010-05-17 17:30

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Martim Avillez Figuereido, the editor-in-chief of the innovative Portuguese newspaper, i, has left the direction of the daily following a number of disagreements with the management, according to Jornal de Negócios.

The Lena Group, owner of Sojormedia Capital that operates the daily, confirmed in a press release last month, that Figuereido had been let go and that the newspaper was "looking for a new direction" to guarantee the viability of the publication.
In the press release, the group affirmed it had a "new plan of action that aims to reformulate its strategy in the sector of social communication...a second measure is to search for a new direction for the newspaper that guarantees its viability. This new path will be forced to pass by cost control and revenue increase, and the deepening of synergies with other Lena Group brands."

As part of its ongoing restructuring, the company confirmed the departure of Martin Avillez Figuereido and the appointment executive director André Macedo as the new interim editor-in-chief.

Although the company commits the management to "presenting a solution for the direction of the newspaper that will assure the quality of the project and the desired restructuring simultaneously," the circumstances that surround Figuereido's departure may reveal a different future for this unique daily.

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2010/05/portugal_is_figuereido_leaves_newspaper.php

Author

Maria Conde

Date

2010-05-07 16:34

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The New York Observer has launched a trial incentive programme for reporters, the Awl reported, offering bonuses to staff for web popularity and web traffic. The scheme was announced last Wednesday via a memo at a staff meeting.

In May, June and July, a first place award of $500 and second place of $300 will be offered in each category - pageviews, number of posts, new Twitter followers, number of comments, and external pickups. Each employee can win a total of $2500, the Awl specified.

Tips for winning in each category were offered, including using Google Trends, Twitter and other tools to find out what's popular on the web, using social media to promote stories, writing blog posts to provide extra commentary, and by ending with 'conversation starters.'

Is offering such financial incentives to staff a wise idea? Encouraging reporters to make an effort to promote their work undoubtedly makes sense, but the idea that journalists might feel pressured to write just about subjects that they believe readers will want to read is worrying, as it might lead to more celebrity coverage rather than hard-hitting stories. Pushing them to write multiple posts could also lead to a drop in quality in each story.

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multimedia/2010/05/new_york_observer_to_offer_bonuses_for_p.php

Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2010-05-05 19:06

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With the advent of online news media and the recent crisis in publishing, newspapers are struggling to find their purpose in an ever-shifting news landscape.

The internet has opened the door to anyone and everyone with an opinion on the news, and this move has left newspapers wondering how they should adjust their offerings, if at all. Some offer journalists the opportunity to provide more commentary on their beats, blurring the line between unbiased reporting and opinionated commentary. Others, like the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, feel that it's important to balance all opinions with an opposing opinion.

"If we have a view to the right, (our readers) want a balance of a view to the left," said Journal-Constitution editor Julia Wallace to NPR. "And they want us to be transparent about how we go about our work."

Wallace's comments led Slate's food writer Dan Mitchell to question if its really in the best interest of consumers for newspapers to offer them issues that are "dull, useless, and full of mush."

"It's like our newspapers are being run by drugged out, brainwashed cult members," he writes. "They really believe that the less newspapers appear to have been written and edited by humans, the better."

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2010/04/should_newspapers_embrace_a_point_of_vie.php

Author

Alexandra Jaffe

Date

2010-04-27 13:36

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Among the news outlets to win Pulitzer prizes last week, the Bristol Herald Courier, a rural publication from Bristol, Virginia stood out from the rest. In a feature for The Huffington Post, Jane Podesta praises the publication's determinism while large news outlets such as The New York Times and The Washington Post keep "groaning about cutbacks."

Podesta's examination of the Herald Courier's work ethic and office environment supports growing evidence that quality reporting can be achieved with less. As a "hungry young reporter," Daniel Gilbert's only experience with investigative journalism consisted of a weeklong crash course in the subject. Yet somehow, after being emailed a tip for a story, Gilbert managed to conduct an extensive investigation into a natural gas company taking advantage of local farmers that ended up winning him and the Courier a Pulitzer in public service reporting.

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Author

Robert Eisenhart

Date

2010-04-21 18:33

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The World Editors Forum is the organization within the World Association of Newspapers devoted to newspaper editors worldwide. The Editors Weblog (www.editorsweblog.org), launched in January 2004, is a WEF initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors.


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