Posted in Conferences & Conventions, journalism, multimedia journalist

10 Things I Learned At #ONA18

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I usually have this post done the Monday after the 18th annual Online News Association conference. But there was so much to unpack I needed extra time to process everything.  And for those of you who didn’t make it this year, it was just as good as it looked on social media, so I hope you’re preparing for New Orleans next year. So here’s my review.

Board elect

  1. The ONA board is very popular! We have a record 22 folks running for six board seats, including me. No matter who wins, the board will be in a great position to help implement ONA’s strategic plan, already in progress. Click here to see the video, listen to the audio or read the social media on the candidate’s forum. Did I mention there was a bar? You have until Sept. 27 to vote, here.
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Partial group photo of #NABJAtONA
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#TheBrownAndTheBeautiful photo at ONA, styled by Paul Cheung.

2. Diversity a thing! I remember when there were so few of us attending the ONA conference that we all fit into a picture. But not this year! My #NABJ tribe took a photo but had to take several in order to get everyone, and we still didn’t do it. I saw many more people of color and got to see many friends I made at my first (and the last true) Unity convention in Chicago in 2008. And my heart was warmed seeing how many NABJ members say they will attend ONA in 2019. Overall, the diversity at this year’s conference was pretty good. Wait until New Orleans! #NABJAtONA

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The HBUC Fellows and Leader Michael Grant at ONA’s awards banquet.

3. The ONA HBCU Fellows crushed it — again! THESE are the #ONA18 HBCU Digital Journalist Fellows at our awards banquet. Left to right: Xavier McKnight (Savannah State); Leah Proctor-Ford (Spelman); Shayla Simmons (Tennessee State); Kyla Wright (Hampton); Daja Henry (Howard); and Program Lead Mentor Michael R. Grant (Grambling State).  I strongly encourage you to check out their work here, under HBCU FELLOWS REPORTING. And if you’re looking to diversify your newsroom internships, contact them; they’re all seniors! Or contact me — I’ll help you find them and other deserving students of color in need of paid internships.

tyler

4. I get by with a little help from my friends. I have to thank all of my friends who stopped by to speak with the HBCU fellows. They took time out of their busy schedules to share their experiences and wisdom with these young people. Most importantly, they made the HBCU fellows really think about the realities of a journalism career. So shout out to my boss Mandi Woodruff, executive editor at LendingTree; Rochelle Riley, award-winning columnist at the Detroit Free Press; 2018 CNN Diversity Fellow and SB Nation staff writer Tyler Tynes; Sarah Glover,NABJ President and NBC Social Media Editor; Ebony Reed, director of innovation and the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the Futures Lab at the University of Missouri; Imaeyen Ibanga, senior producer and presenter with AJ+ and ONA board member (vote for her here); Akoto Ofori-Atta, senior editor of The Trace; and Jamal Jordan, 2017 CNN Diversity Fellow and digital storytelling editor at the New York Times.

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Award winner Marissa Evans.

5. And the winner is… This is my mentee Marissa Evans. Marissa worked in the Online News Association Student Newsroom (along with Anna-Lysa Gayle) in 2012. She is now the health policy reporter at the Texas TribuneShe was one of a few journalists of color to win an ONA journalism award for her story comparing the childbirth process in Poland and Texas. Marissa won a grant from the Pulitzer Foundation to pay for her trip to Poland (after meeting the granters at NABJ in New Orleans) to report on the story. These awards are prestigious and they are always competitive, but the right person won. P.S. If you’re looking to hire a talented journalist for your newsroom, you should definitely give Marissa a call. Or email me here — I have a lot of people who would be great for your newsroom. Seriously.

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6. Amy Webb was…soothing! Her panel, “Tech Trends For Journalists,” is always packed. It’s known for dropping some serious wisdom — and scaring the crap out of us. But this year, Amy flipped the script and focused on the optimistic side, and gave us cocktails to boot! You can view, listen to and read about her session here — and I highly recommend that you do.

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Emma Carew Grovum (leader, Journalism Mentorship Collaborative), Kim Bui (board secretary), Mandy Jenkins (board president) Benet Wilson (board VP), Charo Henríquez (board member) and Rubina Madan Fillion (board candidate).
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The annual #BlackGirlMagic photo at Amy Webb’s tech trends presentation.

7. Women rule. This is a photo of women who are kicking ass, both on the ONA board and in their careers. I hope that every one of them ends up running ONA, now and in the future.

Missed

8. Time management. The truth is, I *suck* in this area. There was always a workshop to attend, a person to have coffee with, mentees to hug, board duties to perform, receptions and parties to enjoy, dinners to eat and cocktails to enjoy (thanks, Mandy Jenkins for making me stay up when I really wanted to sleep).

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Companies participating in the ONA Midway.

9. I saw the future of journalism. One of my favorite things about the ONA conference is The Midway. I call it an exhibit hall on steroids because you have great companies creating interesting tools and tech that help us do our jobs smarter and better. There are hands-on demonstrations and presentations on what’s next. Check out this 2:10-minute video on what you missed.

ONA staff

10. The ONA staff kicks ASS! Led by Executive Director Irving Washington, this staff — a perfect blend of full-timers and great consultants — always manages to raise the bar with our conference every year. If there were issues, we never saw them. Every single time I saw a member of the ONA team, they were cool, collected and smiling. And a BIG shout out to the newest member of the staff, Diana Lopez, who started on the job mere days before we descended on Austin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Conferences & Conventions, Education, journalism, multimedia journalist

10 Online News Association Panels Relevant to Digital Journalists

The 18th annual Online News Association (ONA) conference is happening this week in Austin, Texas.  The conference has become the must-attend event for digital journalists and storytellers. Full disclosure  — I’m currently VP of the ONA board, running for re-election and I’d really appreciate your support. Keep up with NABJ members attending the conference via the hashtag #NABJAtONA.

It’s well known that attending ONA isn’t cheap. Every year, the conference sells out because people see the value it brings to the table. But one of the many things I love about this particular event is how open and accessible it is.

If you can’t be in Austin, you can still join us — for FREE — thanks to our amazing video, audio and social teams that cover almost every workshop. And we’re also doing, for the first time, we’re also doing the ONA on Air podcast, which will be available on Soundcloud, Google Play, Apple Podcasts and Stitcher.

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Look at the “How’s My Story Doing? Custom Analytics and Empowered Local Newsrooms” workshop. The Audio and Screen symbols mean that this particular session will be live streamed and also have audio available. You can also sign up to gets notifications when the live stream and social conversation begin. Not every session will be live streamed, but between that, audio and social, you’ll get access to the majority of our programming. It’s not like being in Austin, but it’s pretty close.

So below are my picks of 10 workshops that can help digital journalists of color remain relevant in their newsrooms.

  1. 11th Annual Tech Trends For Journalists (AUDIO & VIDEO): This is THE must-attend session of the convention every year. If you had the chance to see a version of journalist and futurist Amy Webb’s presentation at NABJ’s Philadelphia convention in 2011, then you know what I’m talking about. If not, check out a presentation where Webb will blow your mind via insights into what trends will impact journalism, what tools are on the horizon and how newsrooms can use them, while also avoiding potential disruption.

  2. Notes from the Journalism Diaspora (AUDIO & VIDEO): This year’s NABJ Region I conference included a Diversity and Management training program led by former Deputy Regional Director Nicki Mayo. One of the panels, “New management and leadership skills for journalists,” featured Justin Ellis, a journalist who wrote for Neiman Lab and ESPN the magazine. At that time he had taken a job as a researcher on former “Daily Show” correspondent Wyatt Cenac’s new HBO show “Wyatt Cenac’s Problem Areas.” As newsrooms continue to cut editorial jobs, this panel discusses how journalists can develop skills that are useful within and outside of news media.
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    Screenshot of AirTran Airways’ website on Aug. 15, 2000.

    Setting the Record Straight by Going Wayback (AUDIO): If you attended my NABJ Innovation Bubble workshop, “Tools & Apps for Digital Journalists,” you know that one of the tools I highlighted was the Wayback Machine, The Internet Archive, which allows anyone to see archived versions of web pages going back to 1996. Site director Mark Graham will discuss how newsrooms and journalists can use it to build out their archive-sourcing capabilities and leverage the internet’s long memory because it’s true — just because you delete it or archive it doesn’t mean it’s gone forever.

  4. Vicarious Trauma Response Planning (AUDIO): We’ve had a year when it comes to covering traumatic events. This is a great panel for newsroom leaders and reporters on how to plan for this coverage and ensure that teams leave room for self-care.
  5. Beyond Audiograms: Audience Engagement in Podcasting (AUDIO): It seems like we’re seeing news-related podcasts being released on the regular. But it’s not enough to just throw one out there. In this workshop, panelists will look at things like social metrics, SMS, chatbots and Facebook groups that are portable, scalable concepts that promote products while also fueling storytelling.

  6. Alerts, Apps and Algorithms: Loyalty in a Mobile-First World (AUDIO): It seems like new and updated digital tools come out every day. This workshop is designed to help newsrooms building mobile channel strategies, decision makers trying to understand where traffic and loyalty intersect and anyone trying to get a handle on the impact of mobile OS-driven algorithms.

  7. Subscriptions, Metrics and the Newsroom: How Journalists are Getting Involved (AUDIO): Online newsrooms have always had a focus on these topics, but legacy newsrooms have been slower to the game. But we know that metrics are driving how stories are written and who stays and goes based on the numbers. This session is for anyone looking to get a handle on how to read conversion metrics.

  8.  Ten Secrets of Fast Writing and Powerful Storytelling (AUDIO & VIDEO): As newsroom leaders and editors push to create content to feed the beast, sometimes you can feel like you’re constantly grinding and not telling the stories you want to tell. This workshop helps you balance speed with good storytelling.

  9.  Meet Me IRL (AUDIO): Texas Tribune FestivalSlate Day! A Podcast Experience. Washington Post Live. Blavity’s AfroTech. Newsrooms are using these types of events to not only connect with their audiences but to help shore up the bottom line. Check out how they’re doing it and get tips on how your newsroom can map out a strategy to run them successfully.

  10.  Beyond Facebook: How to Survive and Thrive After Newsfeed Changes (AUDIO): Facebook, for good or bad, has become an important tool for newsrooms to push out their content. But every time you think you’ve mastered the algorithm, change comes, causing chaos to your feed. This panel will discuss how you can use tools like Reddit, Flipboard and Pocket to keep their audiences and reduce their reliance on things like Facebook and Google.

 

 

Posted in Education, multimedia journalist, Technology

My Tools & Apps for Digital Journalists: What You Missed at #NABJ18

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By Benét J. Wilson

One of my new favorite features at the NABJ Annual Convention and Career Fair is the Innovation Bubble. These are one-hour sessions where you can learn about digital tools and resources you can use in your newsroom that help you work smarter and better.

I was delighted when I was asked to do a session on all the digital tools, apps and resources that I use in my job every day. The room was packed, and it went pretty quickly, so I promised that I’d share the presentation, along with other tools recommended by the audience. My goal was to show you things you could use as soon as you returned to your newsrooms on the Monday after convention.

Click here to see my Prezi presentation with all the tools I shared. But I also got input from the audience on other tools and tech you may want to consider. Please feel free to add your favorites in the comments!

  1. EasyGif: Use this tool to make your own gifs.
  2. Atlas: From the publishers of Quartz, this tool to create your own charts that you can embed into stories.
  3. Pixlr: This desktop and mobile app is that is a Swiss army knife for those who work with photos, including photo editors, a screen recorder and a photo-sharing service.
  4. Google Scholar: Looking for experts to add to your story? This website serves as a repository of professors, scholars and lawyers who can help. Type in your topic and watch the magic!
  5. Hootsuite: This free tool allows you to schedule your social media posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and YouTube.
  6. Buffer: The free and paid versions of this web and mobile app also allows you to schedule social media posts. The paid version gives you great analytics about your posts.
  7. Over: Take your photos to the next level by using this tool to add captions, change fonts and play with filters. It comes with more than 4,000 editable templates, millions of commercial-free stock images and 20,000+ graphics.
  8.  Tape-A-Call: This app allows you to record calls that convert into MP3s that can be easily shared. Make sure to check your state’s laws on recording phone calls.
  9. Google Translate: This desktop tool and mobile app (iOS or Google Play) can translate more than 100 languages. It isn’t perfect, but it does a good job for basic things. You can type, speak or write words or short phrases. You can hold your smartphone camera up to a sign and have it instantly translated. You can download any language and use all these functions even if you don’t have Wi-Fi or cellular access on your phone.
  10. Knightlab tools: One I recommended in my presentation was Timeline JS. But Knightlab has three other tools designed to help you tell your stories. Juxtapose allows you to compare two photos taken at different times. Soundcite allows you add short audio clips to your story right under any text you choose. Storymaps allows you to create maps and add text that helps illustrate a story.
  11. Ground: This new app, created by a journalist, uses artificial intelligence to help users verify news events happening around them.
  12. Nappy: Looking for free African-American stock photos? This website has wonderful pictures of our people at work and at play.
  13. Snapz Pro X: Use this tool to record your screen or save it as a QuickTime movie or screenshot that can be e-mailed or shared on the web.
  14. Snagit: This is another tool that allows you to record your screen for videos and photos.
  15. EasyPrompter: This web-based app turns your computer, tablet or smartphone into a teleprompter.
  16. Hunter: Looking for the email of someone who works at an organization? This tool scours the web to find their name and email address.
  17. Whentogram: Let this app tell you the best times to post to Instagram.
  18. Unum: Use this app to craft layouts, create and tailor grid, save posts to drafts and plan the perfect Instagram feed.
  19. TilePic: Turn your photos into tiled banners that can be posted on Instagram.
  20. Google Keep: This tool allows you to take notes, lists, photos, and audio to keep up with your life.
  21. Quertime — 15 Online Tools to Create E-Magazines, eBooks and Digital Newspapers
  22. Quertime — 15 Online Tools to Create Impressive Resumes

Benét J. Wilson is the travel + rewards associate editor for MagnifyMoney.com and CompareCards.com. She is also owner/editor-in-chief of Aviation Queen LLC, a freelance writing and consulting business.

Posted in Education, journalism, multimedia journalist, Webinar

New Year, New You: We’re Back!!

Copy of 10 productivity tips

If it’s the beginning of the new year, that means it’s time for the NABJ Digital Journalism Task Force’s annual “New Year, New You” webinar series. Every year, we kick off January with a series of webinars designed to help you jump-start your career. As usual, we partner with NABJ Task Forces and members to create this programming.

Usually, you must be a paid NABJ member to participate, but for January, anyone can join us. But going forward, you will need to be a paid member (local membership doesn’t count) to participate in future webinars. Click here if you want to join NABJ.

Below is a list of the webinars we have scheduled this month. And if you have ideas for future webinars email us here with your ideas and we’ll work on making them happen.  I thank all the NABJ members who have stepped up to make this happen!

New Year, New You: The Resume Edition, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 7:00 p.m. EST

Covering LGBTQ Communities (Better), Monday, Jan. 15, 6:30 p.m. EST

#MediaBoss: How to Break into Newsroom Management, Monday, Jan. 15, 8:00 p.m.

Posted in Equipment, Innovation, journalism, multimedia journalist

Friday Fast Five + Five: Your Guide To New Media

  1. LinkedInHow to not make newcomer mistakes on LinkedIn
  2. JeffBullas.com12 Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make on Twitter If You Want More Followers
  3. Life HackerThe Best Extensions to Make Google Maps Even More Awesome
  4. Mashable12 Best iPhone Apps of 2014
  5. IJNETAnalice.me helps journalists automatically analyze thousands of documents
Posted in Education, Innovation, multimedia journalist

Friday Fast Five + Five – The Mashable Edition: Your Guide To New Media

Mashable has long been one of my go-to websites when it comes to things I can do to improve my digital journalism skills.  So below are great links to 10 Mashable articles that may help you. Enjoy!

  1. From creating charts to managing your inbox, the 11 most useful web tools of 2014
  2. The Tumblr Starter Kit
  3. The 7 Best Uses for Tumblr
  4. Persona Wants to Protect Your Online Reputation
  5. The Beginner’s Guide to SoundCloud
  6. 5 Must-Have Tools for a Killer Presentation
  7. 9 Best Free Image Editors
  8. 7 Things You Didn’t Know Bitly Could Do
  9. How to Optimize Your Profile Photos Across Social Media
  10. 9 Best Free Image Editors