In Case You Missed It

Columbia Journalism Review Timothy Pratt

In L.A. neighborhood, teen reporters give a paper unique access to its community

"Boyle Heights Beat, with a print run of 33,000 to go along with its website and an active Facebook page, has an annual budget of about $250,000."

Columbia Journalism Review Philip Eil

6 lessons from a 5-year FOIA battle

Know your rights. Get to know the world of FOIA. Understand your blind spot. FOIA is money. Prepare to sue. Get inspired.

Los Angeles Times Deirdre Edgar

Mary McNamara named L.A. Times editor for arts and entertainment

A former TV critic for the LA Times, McNamara won a Pulitzer in 2015 for TV criticism.

BuzzFeed Alex Kantrowitz

Facebook suspends accounts of Palestinian journalists

"Last week, the company disabled several prominent Palestinian journalists’ accounts, following user reports that they were violating Facebook standards."

Digiday Jemma Brackebush

What the AP has learned from a year of VR

"The goal is to understand how it works, optimize internal work flow and explore monetization opportunities."

Digiday Lucia Moses

How Slate tried to wean itself off of Facebook visitors

"So far this year, the number of people who come 25 times a month are up 56 percent. It’s hard to change the minds of advertisers that are focused on scale, though."

Politico HADAS GOLD

The Arizona Republic endorses Hillary Clinton

"The editorial said Clinton's temperament and experience prepare her for office, while it questioned Donald Trump for not releasing his tax returns, asking 'whose hand do you want on the nuclear button?'"

The Washington Post Erik Wemple

NBC News boss says Brian Williams’ credibility problems are history

"When asked whether Williams had left behind some unfinished business in that Lauer interview, Lack responded, 'Ancient history to me.'"

CNN Money Dylan Byers

Lester Holt walks a fine line at debate and wins praise

"Lester Holt, the moderator of Monday night's debate, walked a fine line, fact-checking on occasion but often letting the candidates debate."

CNN Money Dylan Byers

Trump's appeal to Hannity highlights his conservative media bubble

"When Donald Trump wanted to prove, despite the evidence, that he never supported the Iraq War, he turned to Sean Hannity for help."

The Wrap Brian Flood

Why CBS News isn't sweating its third-place finish

"'To grow our audience, at a time when there is more and more choice, I think is a significant accomplishment,' CBS News exec Steve Capus tells TheWrap."

NPR Elizabeth Jensen

NPR got pushback for its fact-checks

"Some additional statements could have been checked but, overall, I think NPR's team offered a valuable service that met the goal of providing citizens with information they need to make their November decisions."

Columbia Journalism Review Alex T. Williams

Employment picture darkens at digital outlets

"...In a disturbing development, digital news jobs that had been replacing some of the legacy positions appear to have hit a plateau."

Politico Hadas Gold

POLITICO will launch polling partnership with Morning Consult

"The polls will focus on political issues, personalities and media aspects that affect the daily debate, according to a spokesperson for POLITICO."

Variety David Remnick

David Remnick is high on BuzzFeed

The New Yorker editor praised BuzzFeed's lofty ambitions. "(Editor-in-Chief Ben) Smith landed at BuzzFeed; more to the point, he was instrumental in inventing it — a protean site that is morphing all the time."

In case you missed it

Columbia Journalism Review Timothy Pratt

In L.A. neighborhood, teen reporters give a paper unique access to its community

"Boyle Heights Beat, with a print run of 33,000 to go along with its website and an active Facebook page, has an annual budget of about $250,000."

Columbia Journalism Review Philip Eil

6 lessons from a 5-year FOIA battle

Know your rights. Get to know the world of FOIA. Understand your blind spot. FOIA is money. Prepare to sue. Get inspired.

Los Angeles Times Deirdre Edgar

Mary McNamara named L.A. Times editor for arts and entertainment

A former TV critic for the LA Times, McNamara won a Pulitzer in 2015 for TV criticism.

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How headline writing and SEO collide

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) includes techniques (both editorial and technological) to ensure relevant content ranks well in search results on search engines. Good SEO calls for breaking--or at least re-examining--some established conventions of headline writing.

Consider these ways that headline practices and SEO needs collide:

Style issues. Conventional print headlines typically use last names only and abbreviations (in state names, for example). Good SEO includes spelling out any keywords that a user is likely to use in a search query.

Creativity and variety. A frequent complaint among headline writers is that the pursuit of the literal in web headlines takes all the fun and creativity out of headline writing. This doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. Where print headlines are constrained by layout specifications, web headlines are constrained by the dictates of good SEO. Just as headline writers treat tight specs as a challenge to write around, so should they see SEO considerations.

When things get tough, remember... You’re not writing for Google; you’re writing for people, with Google in mind. Sometimes headline writers get carried away with SEO. It’s counterproductive to put these goals ahead of clarity and common sense.

Taken from Writing Online Headlines: SEO and Beyond, a self-directed course by Eric Ulken at Poynter NewsU.

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