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Digital Tool Tuesday: Yik Yak

March 11, 2015 Leave a comment

The Tool: Yik Yak

yikyak

What is it? A social media app that allows users to post anonymously; others “endorse” the posts to make them “hot.” Yik Yak communities primarily are around college campuses; the users are primarily students.

How does it work? People post observations; you can find “nearby” Yik Yaks. There are two options to view; one lets you see the newest posts; the other is to see the “hot” posts — those posted endorsed (liked) by others.

The search button lets you see featured topics, and “peeks,” which are other communities (again, mostly colleges).

You may include a username to Yik Yaks. That might be a good idea if you’re trolling for info as a reporter.

Tips:

– For journalists on a breaking story, this can work as a reporting tool. However, there are pitfalls in quoting Yik Yak posts, since no one is accountable to them. It should be used to gather, but not confirm, information.

— There is fallout to Yik Yak, because some posters can share threats and other nasty things. Some colleges are considering banning Yik Yak.

Some articles about the effect of Yik Yak on campuses:

http://www.dailytarheel.com/article/2015/02/colleges-try-to-manage-yik-yak-problems

http://www.greenvilleonline.com/story/news/education/2015/01/08/clemson-considers-yik-yak-anonymous-app-ban/21463007/

http://temple-news.com/opinion/comments-yik-yak-spur-race-discussions/

How it is used:

We used it to gather intel on campus during a campus shooting; to discern what was happening and hone our questioning of officials. Further, the Yik Yaks were mourning the victim (a professor) by name before officials could confirm the identity. It helped us make a call on when to release a name.

It was also used after a racially charged party on the Clemson campus; the comments helped confirm some of the circumstances of the party.

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Digital Tool Tuesday: Useful web sites

February 26, 2015 Leave a comment

spjtoolbox

Digital Tool Tuesday: Useful (and offbeat) websites for features reporting

In this edition, some resourceful websites to use in lifestyle reporting, courtesy of The Journalist’s Toolbox, itself a great compilation of what journalists need to navigate reporting in the digital age.

Food Timeline

http://www.foodtimeline.org/index.html

Simply done, this is a timeline of the history of food. Want to know when “The Virginia Housewife” was first published? This timeline has that. Want to find out when the first dedicated baby food was produced; it’s got that, too. Click on the hyperlink and get a lot of well sourced material to mine for any food history story. Bonus: a page that outlines food prices in the past.

Supertracker

https://www.supertracker.usda.gov

A USDA site, this includes great consumer information and personal tools for weight loss and increasing activity. Editors will find the Food-A-Pedia a useful tool to discover nutritional information on any food.

Math for journalists

http://www.robertniles.com/stats/

Math tutorials from the L.A. Times Robert Niles. We like the simple explanation of percent change.

And, just for fun

Ugly Dress blog

http://www.uglydress.com

An archive of the world’s ugliest dresses. A great way to report on ugly bridesmaid dresses.

Gallery of Regrettable Food

http://www.lileks.com/institute/gallery/

Indexed list of dishes to die for. Or die of.

More offbeat sites: http://www.journaliststoolbox.org/archive/cool-sites/

Did you miss our first SFJ Story Club chat? Catch highlights here

February 24, 2015 Leave a comment

iris burkhart and mother
Did you miss SFJ’s inaugural Story Club Twitter chat about the Sun-Sentinel’s ‘The Lost Sister”?

Catch the highlights of the discussion here.

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Join us on Monday for #SFJStoryClub

February 19, 2015 Leave a comment

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 9.57.32 AM

The newsroom gets a phone call — two sisters who had not seen each other in decades are having a reunion. The first instinct is to go cover the event, write it up and move on.

But, the folks at the Sun-Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale did a little digging, and came up with this tale of loss, grief and hope.

Now, we’re going to dissect this story apart and learn how it unfolded. Join us on Monday, February 23rd from 1-2 pm EST for SFJ’s first Story Club Twitter chat about “The Lost Sister,” a great piece by Nicole Brochu and photographer Joe Cavaretta, who tracked down this story and turned it around in record time.

To participate in the Story Club Twitter chat you can send questions to the SFJ listserv by 3 p.m. Friday, February 20th. Or, send them on Monday using Twitter and the hashtag #SFJStoryClub. Be sure to follow along next week!

Categories: Features news Tags: ,

SFJ Campus Connection: Journalism internship links galore & tips on moving to a new city

February 19, 2015 Leave a comment

Our third issue of SFJ Campus Connection is here! It’s the perfect tool for anyone on the hunt for an internship. Plus hear from a Mashable employee about how he networks to find places to live.

Follow this link to the PDF version with hotlinks: SFJ Newsletter 3

SFJ Newsletter 3

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Digital Tool Tuesday

February 11, 2015 Leave a comment

Digital Tool Tuesday Welcome to a new weekly feature of SFJ, in which we share tips about a digital tool to leverage for lifestyle and arts and entertainment coverage. The tool: Storymap

Storymap screenshot from the Burning of Columbia

Storymap screenshot from the Burning of Columbia

What does it do? Creates clickable map that allows you to tell a story at each point.

What’s cool about it? Embed video and photos at each point, bringing a map to life.

Read more…

ABC News, USA Today interns talk to Campus Connection

October 31, 2014 Leave a comment

This fall, we hear from two summer interns and their experiences at ABC News and USA Today. Also, Washington & Lee University (in Lexington, Va.) professors give tips to students.

Our quarterly Campus Connection newsletter aims to connect college journalism students and professors with the features journalism society at large. If you have ideas for future newsletters, please like us on Facebook and leave a comment there. Thanks!

SFJ campconn2

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