WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Mon - 23.10.2017


November 2012

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The first Latin American Forum on Digital Media and Journalism took place last Friday, 23 November, in Mexico City. Organised by the magazine Distintas Latitudes, Mexican digital publication Animal Político, and the Iberoamericana University in Mexico City, the Forum granted an open invitation to discuss the state of journalism in Latin America and to consider the benefits and obstacles in conducting investigative journalism exclusively from digital platforms. The Forum concluded with ideas for new business models, more accountable, transparent reporting, and the need to return to the basics of quality journalism.

The Forum has been conceived at a time when the issue of organised crime is prevalent in the lives of Latin Americans and largely absent from local print newspapers. Why is this the case?

Author

Gilda Di Carli

Date

2012-11-30 16:45

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‘Proustian’ is right. As predicted, Lord Justice Leveson’s report, published at 1.30pm this afternoon, is no pamphlet, running to four volumes and over 2,000 pages. What follows, therefore, is an attempt to briefly summarise the findings of the report and its reception amongst journalists and politicians, to be followed (possibly tomorrow) by a longer analysis of its recommendations.

The report itself breaks down into three main areas, the first of which concerns the relationship between the press and the police. Leveson finds that, whilst there was no endemic or institutionalised corruption in the force as a whole, several poor decisions were made during the original phone-hacking investigation. In response, the judge makes a number of minor recommendations, including the introduction of the practice of recording the interaction between police officers and journalists on a regular basis.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-29 19:35

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The bomb found under the car of Pakistani journalist and TV talk show host Hamid Mir earlier this week highlighted the urgent need for governments to act to ensure the safety of journalists.

Only a month ago, at a symposium on this issue in London, Mir was telling of the death threats he and his colleagues were receiving daily. Messages were being sent directly to journalists' mobile phones and email accounts, because of their support for the blogger Malala. There was no evidence that the state was doing anything to protect the recipients.

“Where are the state security agents?” Mir asked at the time: “Why are they not intercepting these threatening messages and protecting journalists?”

That day Mir put his signature, alongside those of 40 media organizations and individual journalists, to the “London Statement”, an eight-point declaration that condemned killings and attacks against journalists and expressed dismay over the lack of government action.

Author

Cherilyn Ireton

Date

2012-11-29 18:33

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American TV station CNN is set to recruit the former NBC boss Jeffrey Zucker to fix a network seemingly in the throes of an identity crisis.

The editor of the British periodical The Spectator Fraser Nelson has broken rank on the eve of the publication of the Leveson report, stating in an editorial that the magazine will play no part in ‘state-sponsored regulation’.

Speaking from the Ecuadorian embassy in central London, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange expressed surprise after the European Commission ruled that a block on processing donations for his organization by credit card companies was unlikely to have violated EU anti-trust rules.

ITN Productions, makers of both ITV and Channel 4 News, has launched an innovative ‘citizen’ video journalism platform called TruthLoader, which will host amateur footage from locations around the world.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-28 17:29

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Jeff Whatcott would say that - after all, he is the Chief Marketing Officer at video hosting giant Brightcove. We were speaking to him on a study tour visit to their HQ in Boston last month.

But of course most news organisations with a strong online presence agree. For example, Kalle Jungkvist - Senior Advisor to Schibsted Media Group and Frenemies Consultant with WAN-IFRA, says "integrated news videos and integrated web TV is more or less a must for a modern news site" (see video below from his interview at DME12).

And the trend is growing fast. Chris Berend, Head of Digital Video Production and Content Development at Bloomberg, says they recently "more than doubled amount of video streams being consumed across web and mobile properties".

More and more news media companies are working with partners like Brightcove to optimise their video content and Jeff was happy to share some of his hints and tips for getting the best from your video strategy, for instance:-

Media
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Author

Nick Tjaardstra

Date

2012-11-28 17:17

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‘The newspaper industry is like the British army retreating on Dunkirk. As before Wapping, it asks only how many boats might there be for survivors, two titles or perhaps three? Erecting paywalls may delay the retreat, but I sense that as long as online news media are selling just information and comment, they will be vulnerable to Bailey's web attrition.’

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-27 18:50

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At long last, the Gotterdammerung is nearly upon us. After months of celebrity evidence, rancorous debate, interminable editorializing and party-political positioning, the great dénouement to Lord Justice Leveson’s inquiry into the practise, culture and ethics of the press will culminate on Thursday, when his report (which the BBC learns will be a whopper, ‘Proustian in length if not in literary ambition’) is finally published. Having written at some length on Leveson no less than three times in the last few weeks (for those interested, here, here and here), it is perhaps more useful at this stage simply to collate the more thoughtful pieces from the web in one place, to be followed upon the publication of the judge’s report by a more detailed examination of his recommendations. In the meantime: David Cameron, if it’s a slow day in the office, you’ve completed all the levels on Angry Birds and you’re looking for some opinions, this is the blogpost for you.  

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-26 18:59

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Its potent mixture of news, celebrity and scurrility propelled it to the title of world’s most popular newspaper website, and figures released yesterday suggest the inexorable rise of Mail Online is far from over. Data compiled by owners Daily Mail & General Trust this morning reveal that digital revenue at Associated Newspapers, which also publishes the Metro and Mail titles, was up 72 percent to £31m. Mail Online revenue for the year to September 30 grew 74 percent to £28 million, after traffic to the site exceeded 100 million unique monthly browsers.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-23 17:59

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Did you know that only 29 percent of Lady Gaga’s 30 million followers on Twitter actually exist? Let me just repeat that: 29 percent. That’s less than a third. The overwhelming majority are unreal, inert, mere cyphers shackled together in a collective expression of inanimate inanity. Isn’t that extraordinary?

Well, no, actually. Earlier this year, StatusPeople introduced a web tool called the Fake Follower Check that claims to ascertain how many fake followers you and your friends have. Lady Gaga, it turns out, is far from unusual: a writer at Forbes used the application to determine that 70 percent of Justin Bieber's 27 million followers are fake, as are 88 percent of Britney Spears', and 74 percent of Oprah Winfrey's.

Now, clearly, there are many plausible explanations why an account might be ‘fake’. Vast quantities of automated spam permeate the site’s chasmic recesses, and many once-genuine profiles are simply inactive. Recently, however, a more insidious manifestation of this fakery has come to light: namely, the phenomenon of ‘followers for sale’.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-22 19:11

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Grupo Clarín, the publisher of Argentina’s most widely read daily newspaper and the largest media conglomerate in the country, once enjoyed a favourable relationship with the government. Now, the two are engaged in a public tussle in which each side claims that the other poses a threat to freedom of expression: the administration of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner accuses Clarín of having a monopolistic stranglehold over the country’s media, and the news conglomerate charges the government with striving to stifle dissenting voices.

The conflict’s focal point is the controversial “Media Law,” also known as the Audiovisual Communication Services Act (No 26.522), passed by Argentina’s Congress in October 2009. Article 45 of this law limits the number of broadcasting licenses that any media organisation can hold, and Article 161 establishes a procedure to divest incompliant companies of their holdings. Proponents call it a move to increase media plurality; detractors consider the measure a government ploy to dismantle its most vocal critic.

Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-21 19:03

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The social media aggregation site Storify has launched a restructured interface that places a revamped search function at the centre of its design. The site, which allows users to create stories from online content from social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and YouTube, had already included a search feature, but as of Tuesday an enlarged version becomes the central aesthetic focus of the homepage. In addition, search items will now be ranked, as Storify puts it, ‘based on the resonance each media item has on our platform’, and all media elements of searches (photos, quotes and videos) will be displayed in a ‘tile’ or ‘card’-based layout. 

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-21 18:07

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For a billionaire chairman and CEO of the world’s second largest media conglomerate, Rupert Murdoch does a decent impression of an 81-year-old who’s going slightly gaga. Sure, he is 81. But such was the widespread impression in the aftermath of his evidence to British parliamentarians given in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal last year. In his halting expressions of contrition, amnesic failure to recollect his activities and a delivery that might charitably be called measured, many found it difficult to reconcile such a diminished prune-like exhibit with his fearsome reputation as the ultimate éminence grise of British politics, the scourge of left-wing politicians for a generation.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-20 19:49

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A week from today, French radio station France Culture will launch a new web portal geared at luring the next generation of listeners to the airwaves via the Internet.

"France Culture Plus" as the new site is called, will mix content from campus radio stations with original work created by students specifically for the web platform, selects from the station’s own academically relevant programming, and audio and video recordings of university lectures and events.

The cultural radio station, which celebrates its 50th birthday next year, is not the only heritage media outlet in France to be reaching out to students this fall. Today, national television station France Télévisions announced “francetvéducation,” a free educational platform targeted at students, parents and teachers. At the end of October, daily newspaper Le Figaro also launched a website dedicated to students, www.lefigaroetudiant.fr.

Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-19 19:32

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Wide-ranging research has been completed into the trust and value readers across Europe place in their printed newspapers, says a report by INMA.

Major European media and advertising groups have been hit hard by the continuing economic downturn, with Lagardere posting a 17 percent slump in Lagardere Active, the magazines and radio division, in Q3, reports Reuters.

Editors of local papers in the UK have signaled their frustration at being treated the same as their badly behaved national counterparts, campaigning to retain self-regulation and rejecting statutory involvement, Greenslade explains in the Guardian.

A PR firm working on behalf of the Russian government has been found to be posting seemingly independent opinion columns praising the current administration, ProPublica reports. Pieces have appeared on CNBC’s website and the Huffington Post in the past two years connected to the public-relations firm ‘Ketchum’.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-19 18:49

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A ‘dossier’ signaling an imminent ‘coup’ from that ‘incestuous […] quasi-masonic nexus’, the ‘Left’s old boy network’; it could only really be one UK newspaper, couldn’t it. Never one for sending its cavalry round the flank, today’s Daily Mail charges headlong into the boggy mire of the Leveson battlefield, bayonets fixed and ready for a scrap. Over the course of its front page, five subsequent double-page spreads and its main leader column, the paper marshals a typically uncompromising thesis of corruption, cronyism and general left-wing Establishment conspiracy which, it fears, threatens to inveigle the otherwise irreproachable Lord Leveson’s august inquiry down the path of unrighteousness, imperiling freedom of the press and the world as we know it. Or something like that.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-16 19:22

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In a move to highlight their respective business-friendly credentials, both the biggest social networking site Facebook and the virtual social pinboard Pinterest have unveiled separate platforms designed for marketers and corporations in a move that has clear ramifications for the newspaper industry.

In their latest move to declutter the standard 'News Feed', Facebook will today role out a new ‘Pages Feed’, an unfiltered section devoted solely to promotional posts and updates from businesses. Introduced to minimize any unwanted juxtaposition between business concerns and genuinely social interaction, the concept exemplifies the balancing act Facebook must constantly perform between everyday users and those who use the site for commercial or promotional purposes. The feature, which users can click to from a button on the left side of their profile page, was reportedly developed in response to criticism from some businesses that their activities on the site were failing to reach a sufficiently wide audience.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-15 19:05

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UPDATE: This article has been updated on November 16 at 12:16 pm.

Welcome to the new age of cyberwarfare, in which armies liveblog deadly attacks, and even provide infographics. Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Facebook are among the weapons being mobilized by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in their campaign against Hamas and other militant groups, launched yesterday.

The IDF are using the verified Twitter account @IDFSpokesperson and the hashtags #IsraelUnderFire and #PillarOfDefense to communicate messages such as the “elimination” of Hamas military leader Ahmed Jabari, the alleged number of rockets that have been fired at Israel from Gaza since the start of the strike, and claims regarding efforts to “minimize harm to Palestinian civilians.”

Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-15 17:14

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In his valedictory speech after 23 years in the UK House of Commons, the Labour MP Chris Mullin pithily assessed the current era of consumerism, globalization and technological advance with the laconic observation that ‘I continue to doubt that there is a long term future for an economy based on shopping’. Indeed, it often appears that the end function of much-lauded technological innovation is merely to grease the wheels of consumer expenditure: recent years have elicited much comment on how Internet shopping transcends the stressful physicality of the high street, facilitating the sedentary nirvana of click-click-click-buy. Easy, you might think; but there are those whose business plans and entire future strategy depends on making it even easier. And much of this current thinking rests on one universal unchallengeable truth: there is nothing easier than sitting on the sofa and watching an episode of Friends.

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-14 20:00

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‘By golly, it’s political, this Leveson business’. So says Quentin Letts, prolific freelance journalist writing for the Press Gazette, and it’s difficult to disagree with him. The delay in publication of Lord Justice Leveson’s report on the culture, practices and ethics of the British press has exposed a vacuum into which the various vested and political interests of core participants have been aired, and Letts seems to speak for much of Fleet Street when he says that the British Establishment, in its response to the phone-hacking scandal, ‘has over-reacted like a coach party of goosed mother superiors’.

Evidently, his is also a political opinion, with Letts a card-carrying member of the ‘do-nothing’ party. Such an attitude is unsurprising: what is notable is the extent to which whole media organizations are flagrantly jockeying, lobbying and positioning, actively attempting to influence the landscape of the media in the aftermath of the inquiry. 

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-13 19:33

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Engaging with video journalism on the web is no longer about tilting your laptop screen just so, leaning back with a bowl of crunchy, salty kernels, and perhaps sharing the odd link. Now, with Popcorn Maker 1.0, anyone can remix and add context to videos from YouTube and Vimeo by integrating elements from the web such as Tweets, Google maps and images.

Launched at Mozilla's 'Mozfest' meeting in London last weekend, Popcorn Maker 1.0 is a free, open source web app that requires neither video editing nor coding abilities to operate. By making it dead simple to mash up, augment and share digital video, it holds the potential to change the way journalists, bloggers and the people formerly known as the audience practice and perceive online video journalism, further distinguishing it from the one-directional experience that is television.

Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-13 15:59

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The latest dramatic twist in the BBC saga has seen the new director general resign and other senior staff step aside. What might be surprising is that it was not the now notorious Jimmy Savile case that actually brought them down, but the misidentification of a child abuser as a former prominent conservative politician.

BBC DG George Entwistle resigned on Saturday after it was confirmed that the BBC’s flagship news programme Newsnight had incorrectly implicated Lord McAlpine, a former Tory treasurer, in a story about paedophilia. 

There has been considerable criticism of Entwistle's £450,000 pay off (a year’s salary) from members of parliament and the National Audit Office is due to look into the justification for the sum.

Tim Davie, who was director of audio and music, has stepped in as acting director general and has pledged to “get a grip” on the news operation and its journalism. It seems clear that Davie is a temporary solution, as BBC chairman Lord Patten is actively seeking candidates, the Guardian reported yesterday.

Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-11-12 20:12

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Is it wrong for a PR firm to forego a monthly retainer, and charge its clients only when it succeeds in getting them mentioned by the media?

Does it make a difference if the PR firm is doing this to help startups shy on capital?

What about if the PR firm has put specific price tags on particular media outlets?

These are the questions that public relations professionals, their clients, tech bloggers and their readers have been grappling with in the wake of yesterday’s announcement by TechCrunch Co-Editor Alexia Tsotsis of a blog-wide ban on PR company PRserve, following her discovery that the firm had been charging clients $750 for getting them covered by an “A-level blog like TechCrunch.”

Chris Barrett, the Founder of PRserve, responded by posting a notice on the company’s website in which he claimed to be “confounded” by the situation. “The only difference between how we share stories and the way a traditional PR firm works is that we do not charge a $5,000 monthly retainer, irrespective of results. We only collect an extremely modest amount for successful stories (a flat rate of $425 - $750 per story), depending on the media outlet,” he wrote.

Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-09 19:24

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This article was updated at 10:11 am on Friday, November 9. 

In stark juxtaposition with the boisterous political process we have recently witnessed in the United States is the choreographed 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, which opened in Beijing this morning. During this weeklong meeting, the single party state will undergo its once-in-a-decade political transition, with President Hu Jintao handing the Party’s reigns to Vice President Xi Jinping.

Colloquially known as the “Eighteenth Big,” or “shiba da,” this is the first Communist Party Congress to be taking place in the age of Weibo, China’s three year-old Twitter equivalent, which has around 300 million users. Chinese social media commentators, however, are up against a much more foreboding foe than that which unnerved some of their American counterparts in the lead-up to election night: instead of the prospect of a great white fail whale, they are confronted with the reality of a Great Firewall.

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Author

Emma Knight

Date

2012-11-08 19:28

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As CVs go, it’s certainly unconventional. As Dr Rowan Williams, outgoing Archbishop of Canterbury and self-proclaimed ‘hairy lefty’, toddles off to ruminate in Cambridge quadrangles, his successor appears to be cut from quite a different clerical cloth. The Bishop of Durham and archbishop-elect, Justin Welby, ought to have grimacing Guardian leader writers sharpening their pencils with relish: for, with apologies to Lady Bracknell, to be an old Etonian is unfortunate, but to be an ex-oil executive as well looks like carelessness. 

Author

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-11-08 18:26


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