Friday, November 04, 2016

Some Questions Concerning the Presidential Race

1. Who do you want to win?
2. Who do you think will win?
3. How confident are you that this will happen? (Express as a percentage)
4. How intense is your interest in this election? (Express as a percentage)
5. How intense do you think the interest of the typical USF student is in this election? (Express as a percentage)
6. Which of the issues discussed by the candidates this election cycle matters most to you? (No more than three)
7. What are your primary news sources about the election? (No more than three)

Things to discuss:

Horse-race versus issue-based coverage of elections

False equivalence

The role of the press in a democracy

The news silo and bias confirmation

(Don't forget to look at HuffPost and Drudge)

Poll chasing & the wisdom of crowds

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

The Schedule for the Rest of the F16 Semester

Week 11 - 10.31
* Continue discussion of crime stories
* Discuss your mini-beat

Week 12 -11.7
* No class Wednesday
* First weekly big story report due 11.9
* Beat memo due 11.11

Week 13 -11.14
* Videolicious week - working multimedia
* Second weekly big story report due 11.16

Week 14 -11.21
* No class Wednesday
* Big story due 11.23

Week 15 -11.28
* First mini-beat story due December 2

Week 16 -12.5
* Second mini-beat story due December 9

Final exam Monday 12/12 10 a.m. - noon

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Foreward to Book on Robert's Rules of Order for Elementary School Children

1876 cover of Robert's Rules of Order , a book...
1876 cover of Robert's Rules of Order , a book containing rules of order intended to be adopted for use by a deliberative assembly. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Much of society is dysfunctional. It no longer works. Every special interest group uses bullying tactics to make others submit to their agenda. It leaves many people with no voice.

To have an effective society, we need effective organizations. To have equality for all, we need to hear everyone's voice, and not just those who scream the loudest, or have the most money, or control the information flow. No one should be allowed to speak over others, hog the floor, or not allow all sides to be heard. Democracy is for everyone, including children.

Children should be taught the fundamental rules of order in the democratic process. This guide is designed specifically to teach children from Kindergarten through 5th Grade how to conduct orderly meetings where everyone gets a chance to speak.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Interviewing Ethics and Interviewing Technique

Watch this interview from around 2:30 to around 5:30. In the comments section, tell me what you think of the interviewer's approach. Those who comment later can comment on earlier comments!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Why Knowing AP Style is Ever More Useful

Copy editors being fired at local news group, which means:

This is going to place a new level of responsibility on reporters and, especially, assigning editors. Many of the ways in which the desk bails us out — often without us noticing — will disappear.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Checklist for on-campus interview

The Interview
The Interview (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

* place of birth
* education
* year came to USF
* why came to USF
* best, worst things about USF
* family
* age
* familiarity with ASUSF resolution on micro-aggressions
* thoughts on micro-aggressions generally and on resolution specifically
* salary
* how contact if need confirm anything
* anything we haven't covered you'd like to bring up

Thursday, February 11, 2016

News Conference Background 2.11.16

You are a Foghorn reporter. Your editor summons you to this press conference, telling you that all morning she has been hearing vague but disturbing rumors about a closed meeting last night of the USF Executive Council - which consists of all the top University administrators - at which administrator Dr. Russ Winters gave a presentation. Winters has agreed to come to an informal news conference for campus media to clarify what was said. The Foghorn editor whispers to you that she got him to agree to come by implying implied she knows exactly what went on at the meeting, though she doesn’t, only that it upset some faculty and administration a great deal. She wants this story up online no later than 4 p.m. today so she expects you to have it done by 3:45 p.m.

Basic fact sheet from the university: Winters was appointed University Director of Institutional Advancement two months ago. He has a B.A. from the University of Scranton and an M.A. and a Ph.D., both in Public Relations, from the University of Georgia. He is 36. For the last ten years he has been Director of Media Relations for John Deere Tractor Company in Belleville, Illinois.

Some Not-So-Terrible Fire Leads

Late Night with David Letterman
Late Night with David Letterman (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Terrible Fire

1) In a late-night rescue, Castro Valley fireman Norman Young dragged a local resident from his burning home earlier today, reviving him with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

According to authorities, the rescued man, Albert Lofton, 53, and his wife, Barbara Lofton, 26, who suffered a sprained ankle jumping from an upstairs window, were treated at a local hospital and are in satisfactory condition.

The fire was the apparently caused by Lofton falling asleep on his living room sofa while smoking a cigarette. According to authorities, Lofton said he had started a fire in the home in the same way two years ago. 99 words

 (could go chronological at this point)

The Lofton’s house, which is located at 1413 Napa St. in Castro Valley, suffered $150,000 in damages, fire officials said.

(or you could add the damage information and go chronological)

2) (Maybe this works. Certainly exciting and consistent with the facts)

After the wife of a Castro Valley man was driven back by flames and chose to save herself by jumping from a second-story window of their burning home, suffering a sprained ankle, late last night a local fireman entered the house and rescued the unconscious husband she had failed to reach.

According to authorities, fireman Norman Young revived Albert Lofton, 53, using mouth-to-mouth resuscitation after dragging Lofton from his living room. Lofton later told authorities he had apparently set his sofa on fire when he fell asleep while watching David Letterman, cigarette in hand.

Lofton and wife Barbara, 26, were taken to Kaiser Hospital in Leandro. Mrs. Lofton has been released. Mr. Lofton is in satisfactory condition but remains hospitalized, hospital officials said. 123 words

3) Albert Lofton, 56, certainly isn't the first person to fall asleep while watching the "Late Show with David Letterman.”  He is, however, the second Castro Valley resident in the last two years to set his house aflame after dozing off on the sofa with a lit cigarette in his hand, according to authorities.

The first perpetrator: also Albert Lofton.

Around 24 months ago, Lofton fell asleep while smoking a cigarette, which caused $15,000 in damages to his home.

Last night Lofton kindled yet another fire in just the same way, said the Castro Valley Fire Department, one of whose firefighters dragged Lofton unconscious from his burning home and revived him with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. 113 words

This time damages were $150,000, authorities said.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Out of Class Exercise for Thursday, Feburary 11, 2016

 * Find a Super Bowl story whose lead you like that can be linked to online
* Tweet a link to that story using #usfreports
* If you need to, employ the Google url shortener

A Speech Exercise

Some thoughts on journalism ethics

Monday, January 25, 2016

I'd Call This a Nice Job of Reporting

From FiveThirtyEight

Last Friday, Washington, D.C.’s blizzard began sometime after the anti-abortion March for Life began, but before protesters reached the Supreme Court. The snow couldn’t stop a Franciscan friar, though. He kept on walking, barefoot, down the streets, singing hymns with other marchers. A long column of students, all in yellow, chanted a few choruses of “Pro-choice, that’s a lie! Babies never choose to die!” and then started up a call-and-response rosary with a bullhorn.
Not far away, I was cracking ice off of the tips of my touch-screen gloves and surveying protesters, trying to learn who had come to the march and what kind of post-post-Roe v. Wade world they wanted to build. I approached every fifth marcher I saw and interviewed 60 people over the four-hour event.1 It’s not a sample I’d publish in an academic journal or anything, but it let me learn more about the movement than I could from staid news reports of how many people showed up.