Chinese police officers, paramilitary policemen and plainclothes security personnel prepare to clear Tiananmen Square ahead of an official ceremony in Beijing, China, on May 12, 2014. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

On eve of Tiananmen anniversary, early optimism pushed aside by press, speech crackdown

Chinese police officers, paramilitary policemen and plainclothes security personnel prepare to clear Tiananmen Square ahead of an official ceremony in Beijing, China, on May 12, 2014. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Two years ago in China, during the run-up to the Communist Party’s ritual changing of the guard, there was a heady mood of expectation that the country’s new top leaders might revive long-stalled political reform and maybe, just maybe, reopen the history books on one topic considered taboo: the June 4, 1989 massacre of hundreds of unarmed pro-democracy students in the streets around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.

The reasons for the early optimism were sound enough.

Xi Jinping, the incoming president, and Li Keqiang, who would become prime minister, were new generation leaders. Xi’s father, Xi Zhongxun, a revolutionary hero, was widely believed to have opposed the Tiananmen crackdown.… Read more

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Monday, May 26, 2014

Yumi Wilson

Spreading the gospel of LinkedIn for Journalists

The classroom at the City University of New York sat attentively watching the browser on the large screen point to LinkedIn. Everyone in the room was familiar with the social network, but they were journalists and had come to see how they could use it for their own specific purposes.

Yumi Wilson

While explaining how the audience could use LinkedIn, Corporate Communications Manager Yumi Wilson was also ushering them through a social media door, one she has unlocked for journalists in person or through online webinars over the past several months.

It’s all part of an expansion strategy for LinkedIn, which has seen membership grow exponentially from 32 million members in 2008 to 300 million in 2014. One part of that strategy is inviting journalists into a group called LinkedIn for Journalists, which boasts more than 55,000 members.… Read more

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Friday, May 23, 2014

hornestsnestmovie

‘Hornet’s Nest’: Memorial Day war movie by father and son journalists opens

The trailer for Mike and Carlos Boettcher’s new movie “The Hornet’s Nest” that opens in theaters nationwide today says right up front the film is “Not based on a true story.” Then a second message appears on the screen, “This is the true story.”

“The Hornet’s Nest” is a movie with no actors. The shooting, the fear, the loneliness, the bleeding, the dying is all real. “The Hornet’s Nest” is the product of two journalists, a father and a son who risked their lives and spent their own money to tell the stories of soldiers and Marines and their families involved in America’s longest wars.

Mike Boettcher is one of network television’s most experienced war correspondents. In 1985, he was kidnapped and threatened with execution in El Salvador.… Read more

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Jlll Geisler

APME once gave women journalists tips on how to ‘make a man feel like a boss’

Here are a few tips from the Associated Press Managing Editors guidelines from 1969, on men working with women, and vice versa:

For men: “Provide the reason, the authority, and the security to direct a woman in the use of her constant emotional drive.”

And for women: “Subordinate your personality to make a man feel like a boss.”

From Wisconsin Magazine of History, fall 2008, ‘Reporters Marian McBride, Bernice Buresh, Sue Kaufman, and Georgian Pílley of the Milwaukee Sentinel, and Mildred Freese of the Milwaukee Journal, picket the Milwaukee Press Club, September 19, 1966.’

Kimberly Voss and Lance Speere included those tips in their March report for Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, “Taking Chances and Making Changes: The Career Paths and Pitfalls of Pioneering Women in Newspaper Management.” Voss is an associate professor and journalism area coordinator at the Nicholson School of Communication at the University of Central Florida.… Read more

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

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Poynter president outlines new strategic direction

Tim Franklin, Poynter’s president.

Since February, a screen in the Great Hall at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida, sped through seconds, clicked through minutes, rolled through hours and scrolled through days. The countdown began on February 10 and marked the start of 100 days that Poynter’s new president, Tim Franklin, gave himself before offering a new vision for the institute.

On May 14, with less than a week to go, Franklin stopped the clock and presented faculty and staff with his report (you can download the document here; it’s also embedded at the bottom of this story). From the introduction:

We will change how we work, where we work and how we financially support our work. We will move with urgency and an entrepreneurial spirit to meet this challenge.

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Monday, May 19, 2014

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013, before the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on cell phones on planes. As one part of the federal government looks to remove restrictions on making phone calls from airplanes, another agency is apparently considering its own prohibition. Wheeler told members of Congress that while his agency sees no technical reason to ban calls on planes, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told him Thursday morning that the DOT will be moving forward with its own restrictions.  (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

What the FCC’s net neutrality ruling means for journalism

The battle over regulation of the Internet moves to Congress this week. Until now, the question of whether the Federal Communications Commission should have the power to force Internet service providers to treat all customers equally has been a legal matter, tied up in federal courts.

But on Tuesday, FCC Commissioner Tom Wheeler heads to Capitol Hill to face the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology chaired by Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), who is openly critical of the FCC’s “net neutrality” rules — the commission’s attempt at ensuring a level playing field on the Internet.

Last week, the FCC, on a split decision, voted to open public discussion on the rules. More than 22,000 public responses have already poured into the commission’s comment site.… Read more

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Friday, May 16, 2014

sp_382687_diez_1_promking050414Slug	promkingxxxx14Pub Section

How the Tampa Bay Times reported on a transgender kid’s prom bid

In mid-April, Tampa Bay Times education reporter Lisa Gartner received a tip that Sebastian Rollins, a student running for prom king at a fundamental school in Seminole, Florida, was transgender.

Sebastian Rollins (Photograph by Cherie Diez/Tampa Bay Times)

Fundamental schools, Gartner said in an interview, tout a “back-to-basics” approach with stricter dress codes, a demerit system and heavy homework loads. “It’s like a charter school in which they can make mandates that other schools don’t have,” Garter said. “If you’re a parent, you have to attend eight meetings a year, so it’s really about ‘all-in’ on the child’s education.”

Gartner decided the story, which the paper published last week, was worth doing: Not only would it tell the story of how such a school would respond to this student’s bid for prom king, it would touch on a recent Title IX rule change aimed at protecting transgender students.… Read more

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

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How mobile devices are creating hyperlocal opportunities

EveryBlock’s recent resurrection raises hopes that digital media efforts can help stoke interest in hyperlocal news. Focusing tightly on Chicago neighborhoods, EveryBlock connects users to information about crime, civic developments and calendar events – down to the block level – and brings neighbors together to talk with each other virtually.

By narrowing its audience, EveryBlock provides an example of  journalistic opportunities that employ the concept of “place.” More refined than circulation area or broadcast territory or even “neighborhood,” place – in this context – refers to the physical space in which news happens, where hubs of heightened engagement with local audiences can be created.

Now that powerful mobile devices are ubiquitous, journalists could – and arguably should – be taking advantage of technologies that tailor interactive content to particular audiences in local settings.… Read more

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Monday, May 12, 2014

33 young writers graduate from Poynter’s The Write Field program

Graduates of Poynter’s The Write Field program pose for a photo with their mentors, sponsors, instructors and supporters. (Boyzell Hosey, Tampa Bay Times)

The Mahaffey Theater was the scene of honored accomplishment on Friday night as 33 Write Field graduates shared a rite of passage before a packed house of family members, mentors, educators, sponsors and friends.

The middle school and high school students, all male minority graduates, donned tuxedos, marched in to an African drum line and were honored for their meritorious work following a nine-month academic enrichment and mentoring program.

Keynote speaker Jay Harris, ESPN’s SportsCenter anchor, challenged the group to consider the importance of their life choices both over the summer and throughout their young lives.

The graduates are the latest class to complete The Write Field, a program that has its beginnings in 2011.… Read more

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Vice devotes entire issue to South Sudan

Vice cover image by Tim Freccia

Editors at Vice didn’t plan on giving an entire issue to one story about South Sudan. But then that story, photographs and video came in.

“And it was so good,” said Annette Lamothe-Ramos, Vice’s creative director, in a phone interview with Poynter. “And we realized we needed an entire issue for this.”

“Saving South Sudan” came out in late April in print and went online Monday. In more than 100 pages it tells the story of writer Robert Young Pelton and photographer and filmmaker Tim Freccia’s trip into South Sudan. Pelton, author of the book “The World’s Most Dangerous Places,” has worked for National Geographic and CNN, among many others. For Vice, he weaves his story between narrative and history.… Read more

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