Tips/Training

Poynter Results

  • Tips/Training

    Article

    6 tips from experts at Poynter's 'Covering Health Care Policy Changes' gathering

    Whether you’re a beat reporter or just covering it for a day, health care is complicated. Cutting through the jargon and complexity of the system can be difficult, so reporting, economic and health experts from across the country broke it down Monday at Poynter’s “Covering Health Care Policy Changes” event in Washington, D.C.

    Whether you heard the discussion in person, or live miles away, here are some takeaways for the next time you delve into health care.

  • Tips/Training

    Article

    Journalists should avoid simple explanations after mass shootings

    Accused Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock's brother said from Orlando that he didn't even know his brother owned rifles. "Maybe a pistol or two that he kept in his safe," Eric Paddock told CNN. His neighbors in Mesquite, Nevada, have expressed their shock and said he never seemed violent.

    Later Monday, Paddock’s brother revealed that their father was once on the FBI’s most wanted list. While that will be an interesting addition to the suspected killer’s profile, it may or may not explain anything.

  • Tips/Training

    Article

    3 guidelines for writing breaking-news leads

    In an age in which technology gives us the ability to publish anytime, anywhere, on any platform, it can be tricky to choose the best lead--especially when the news is breaking.

    Here are some guidelines to make sure your story is the one your audience chooses.

    Time

    • Did the story just happen?
    • Are you the first to report it, or will most of your audience already know about it?
    • Is the time element crucial?

    Audience needs

  • Tips/Training

    Article

    Checklists for covering 3 kinds of beats

    Many traditional beats are defined geographically, either as a neighborhood (territorial) or a city or county (jurisdictional). Some areas that your beat covers may be obvious; others may not. Here are some places to include in jurisdictional beats.

    City hall and local government

  • Tips/Training

    Article

    4 'breath test' questions to diagnose your story leads

    The first words of any story are critical. With that precious beginning, you offer your audience a promise that your story is worth their time. That’s the heavy-duty job of your lead.

    Occasionally leads will seem to magically fly onto the computer screen. But, more often, they are the product of hard work of writing and revising. Use the “breath test” to diagnose whether your efforts will pay off with clear, engaging copy.

    Read your lead aloud and ask yourself these questions:

 
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