If you’re reading this as a final year journalism student, you’ve probably just finished your course. It’s a good feeling. After a few years of practicing, preparing and, indeed, pretending, you’re now free to be a real journalist in the real world.
If you’ve done it right, you’re being described by your peers as one to watch for the future: A real prospect – the prodigy that’s heading places. Everyone wants to work with you.
And then you graduate.
Overnight, you turn from a young up-and-comer to an inexperienced, untested and – if you’re not careful – unemployable journalist.
The idea that journalists can tap into online sources to access a kind of collective consciousness is often touted as the next - or at least the current - big thing. If this is the way forward, news organisations need to understand what makes audience members decide to interact or participate.
'Keep believing' says The Sun two days after England 'keeper Rob Green's shocker.
In the editorial on page 10, The Sun’s leader reads:
Onwards and Cup-wards.
Robert Green made a terrible mistake. But it is over and done with.
Instead of making Green Public Enemy No1, let’s accept that he has held his hands up, focus on the positives and move on.
What is done is done. Soon we face Algeria, and our players need us to roar them on again.
So lift yourself up and dust yourself down.
Let’s start all over again!
So far so patriotic.
But I ask - do the Sun’s leader writers sit in the same room as the rest of the paper? Do they attend the same meetings?
Are they even in the same building?
The front page reads ‘PUTTER FINGERS’, and sports a picture of Rob Green playing golf, holding a ball in his right hand. A thought bubble reads, “Mustn’t drop ball, mustn’t drop ball”.
Over the page, it’s boobs, of course. But by page 4 they’re back at it.
'KEEPER HOWLER ROBS ENGLAND' reads the strap. 'The goal he lost' reads a caption, complete with a mini-slideshow of pics showing the error in excruciating detail.
'Punters in £10m misery' is a nib.
Page 6 and 7… ‘Keeper spirits up - carnival atmosphere despite Green blunder’.
Page 8 and 9? A few pictures of Becks, one caption of which takes the mick out of Green again.
And that’s all assuming you go from the front of the paper. The back page lead reads ‘Why snub me, Fab?’, asking why David James wasn’t picked. Part of the copy reads: “Green got the nod to face USA only to commit the howler which cost England victory on Saturday.”
The second story on the backpage is headlined ‘You’re not the only one, Rob’ - pointing out another (possibly ball-related) shocker by the Slovenia ‘keeper yesterday.
But that’s it. For the back page.
Page 58-59 is another spread, with a huge picture of the mistake, covered with ‘I’m so sorry’. The sub-headings in in Mark Irwin’s piece read ‘Crazy’, ‘Horrible’ and ‘Blame’.
On the right, a column asking ‘Should Rob be dumped?’ and an invitation to go and discuss it online.
Doesn’t quite match with the message pushed by the editorial, does it? It’s hardly “Instead of making Green Public Enemy No1, let’s accept that he has held his hands up, focus on the positives and move on” is it?
My two-penneth - Green knows he’s a good keeper. By facing up to the mistake in the way he did displays exactly the sort of self-belief that so many of our papers say the England team lacks.
This tells you everything you need to know about good, watchable web video. You’d never run a package like this on the telly - you’d have to start crapping on with voiceovers (“This is where footballing dreams begin.. yada yada”) before a set of boring talking heads about why it’s a good place to play football.
But on the web, we can just absorb ourselves in the place. I feel like I’ve spent a day there. And what’s more - the video is just part of the story… there’s plenty more nitty gritty in the written piece.
Although a minor story, this really is web journalism at its very finest. Terrific stuff, NYTimes. They’re hiring at the moment. One day I dream of working there.
“Future generations will never know the feeling of hearing the opening bars of the theme tune and thinking….”shit, it’s school tomorrow””—
Apt comment about the legacy of Last of the Summer Wine. And he’s right - that’s what you would think. And then, as Heartbeat came on afterwards, you’d hope that Mum would let you up long enough to see London’s Burning.
"Racers get periodic power-ups, which appear on an LED display on the controller. Each car comes equipped with infrared sensors capable of detecting when they’ve been hit with a weapon, which causes them to rumble and slow down."