ADVERTISEMENT

Posts by Melody Kramer

About Melody Kramer

Melody Kramer spent the majority of her career in public media, where she directed, produced, edited, and wrote stuff for several shows, including Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me and Fresh Air with Terry Gross. More recently, she worked as a digital strategist at NPR, where she launched and then directed projects that helped NPR make better decisions and build audiences online and on-air. She was a 2014-2015 Visiting Nieman Fellow at Harvard University and just received a Knight Prototype Grant to build out Media Public. Mel has a newsletter where she shares stuff she's learned. She lives in Carrboro, NC.
NEWS

Comparing parental leave policies in American newsrooms

Last year, I received an email from someone who worked in a mid-sized newsroom. She explained that she would soon be having a baby, and she was concerned about the paid parental leave policy in her organization. A policy existed, but it wasn’t great — and she wasn’t sure how to compare the policy with other newsrooms, or even if … Read More
NEWS

Journalists around the world are working together more than ever. Here are 56 examples.

On Monday, The Panama Papers — the giant collaborative investigation spearheaded by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists — won the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting. The Panama Papers may be one of the world’s largest collaborative efforts between journalists at different news organizations, but it certainly isn’t the only one. Back in 2010, Democracy Fund's Josh Stearns … Read More
NEWS

Inside the 8-month reinvention of an unprofitable college newspaper

Last summer Betsy O’Donovan, the incoming Executive Director of The Daily Tar Heel, wrote an essay on Medium charting the dire financial situation of UNC-Chapel Hill’s student newspaper. It started pretty bluntly: “The Daily Tar Heel is a news organization, and we don’t dodge the facts: This 123-year-old institution has two years to figure out its finances.” The … Read More
NEWS

Here are 42 ideas for your newsroom's next newsletter

Every so often, I like to dream about how we could think differently about the building blocks of the news industry. So far, I’ve tackled headlines, homepages, bylines, analytics, podcast ideas, comment sections and ideas for covering the President; in today’s installment, I’ll list some new ideas for newsletters. The nice thing about … Read More
NEWS

NPR has created a team devoted to covering President Trump's conflicts of interest

How have news organizations covered Donald Trump’s potential conflicts of interest? Very creatively, so far. The New York Times created a series of circular graphics showing how Trump’s business efforts potentially intertwine with the federal government. Buzzfeed logged more than 1,500 people and organizations connected to the Trump family and their advisers, which independent designer Kim Albrecht turned … Read More
NEWS

Meet the wildly popular blogger chronicling President Trump one day at a time

Matt Kiser worked in news for many years, and now he works as a product manager at an algorithm startup in Seattle. But every day, Matt spends upwards of six hours working by hand on his single-subject blog, which launched in January. Starting a new project to track what the fuck just happened today. Read More
NEWS

Here's how to cover President Trump's tweets

I love On The Media's Breaking News Consumer Handbook, particularly the image that they post on social media whenever breaking news occurs. It reminds people that every breaking news event unfolds in much the same way, and it makes them aware how quickly misinformation can spread. News is moving very fast these days. Here are … Read More
NEWS

How do we design the news for people who are burned out?

Since the election, many people I know who don’t work in news have taken a break from the news, social media or some combination of the two. This is healthy and normal. Taking a small break from the news is recommended by psychologists who study the negative health effects caused by constant bad news. The American Psychological Association … Read More
NEWS

What does a news organization optimized for trust look like?

After White House advisor Kellyanne Conway appeared on NBC’s "Meet the Press" to say that the White House put forth "alternative facts" to counter what media organizations had accurately reported about inaugural crowd sizes, her phrase made its way into headlines on dozens of news sites — which may have been her intention in the first place. Her … Read More
NEWS

Not just 'Trump's America': These journalists will spend 100 days digging into Appalachia

Since Lyndon Johnson declared his War on Poverty in the early 1960s, Appalachian journalists have grappled with the portrayal of the region in the press. In his foreword to photographer Roger May’s book "Testify," the Kentucky journalist Silas House lamented that "only the poorest folks got into the newspapers and magazines, perpetuating the stereotype that everyone in the … Read More
NEWS

50 ways to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Public Broadcasting Act

This November, the Public Broadcasting Act will turn 50. The law created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and later led to the creation of both PBS and NPR. Here are 50 interesting pieces to read or listen to about public media to celebrate the anniversary. (If you have more ideas, please list them in the comments.) Understand the history … Read More
NEWS

Could changing the way bylines look help increase trust with readers?

How does journalism signal its trustworthiness to an audience that has lost confidence in its ability to be fair? That’s been the ongoing question behind The Trust Project, which has convened journalism strategists and leaders over the past year to identify and develop tools which may help build trust with readers. The initiative, which is based at the Markkula … Read More
NEWS

There are huge advantages to moving to a smaller city

In the summer of 2015, I left Washington, D.C. and moved to Carrboro, population 19,582, in the middle of North Carolina. I had never lived in the South before, or in a small town. Most of my life had been spent along the Acela corridor, in Philadelphia and New York and Boston and Hartford, Connecticut. I thought we would stay … Read More
NEWS

Meet the researchers saving radio news from oblivion

How many historical radio broadcasts have been lost to history? Josh Shepperd, an assistant professor of media studies at Catholic University in Washington D.C., estimates that up to 90 percent of all radio broadcasts that aired between the mid-1920s and the mid-1980s were not saved. Millions of hours of tape were trashed, not stored, not preserved, or lost as … Read More
NEWS

86 pieces of journalism wisdom published in the month since the election

It’s been a month. In the days since the election, a number of articles have been written about the lessons journalists can take from the presidential campaign. Pieces have also focused on what journalists should or must do over the next few months. CJR staff writer David Uberti wrote this three days after the election: It feels as if … Read More
ADVERTISEMENT