13 alternative tips for student journalists

I often get asked what advice I’d give students looking to go into journalism. I think people half expect the answer to be: “Don’t!” Of course, it’s tough, but it’s still a great profession, which is changing all the time. Here, slightly tongue-in-cheek, are 13 alternative tips for student journalists: 

Tools for journalists: Rediscovering Twazzup

New social media tools come, and some go again. Some gain traction and then fall by the wayside when Twitter changes its API, others struggle to make ends meet and introduce subscription service, while others just get forgotten about. For me, Twazzup falls into the last category, but having rediscovered it a couple of weeksContinue reading “Tools for journalists: Rediscovering Twazzup”

Tools for journalists: Using Yatterbox for a different view on Twitter

One of the best things about Twitter – and there are many – is that it can give anyone a voice. That’s huge for journalists, turning Tweetdeck into a modern-day radio scanner, only tailored to just the bits you’re interested in, and involving many more people. However, the downside to that approach is that itContinue reading “Tools for journalists: Using Yatterbox for a different view on Twitter”

18 things I learnt about being a council reporter which I hope still apply today

About three years ago, when I first started this blog, I wrote ’10 alternative rules for covering court’ which still proves to be a popular post today. Not bad for someone who rarely covered court! Council was more often than not my beat, so here, slightly tongue in cheek, are 18 things I learnt aboutContinue reading “18 things I learnt about being a council reporter which I hope still apply today”

Twitter for editors: How to know if your brand account is doing a good job

It goes without saying that pretty much every media brand out there – including, I guess, every local and regional newspaper, has a presence on Twitter. Knowing how effective that Twitter account is for the brand is a different matter. There are a plethora of Twitter analytics tools out there – some good, some badContinue reading “Twitter for editors: How to know if your brand account is doing a good job”

10 useful websites for ‘rainy day’ stories

Holdthefrontpage used to have a interesting, and updated daily, section called ‘story ideas.‘ The idea was simple – you have slow news days, and these were ideas to see you through. A rainy day in Bury,  obviously, isn’t news. However, hopefully these 10 websites could be of use. Yes, some of them are obvious, butContinue reading “10 useful websites for ‘rainy day’ stories”

How to make your live tweeting of an event indispensible for readers

Using Twitter to provide live coverage from an event is so popular largely because it’s so simple. You don’t even need a web-enabled phone to do it, so long as the phone you’re texting from is connected to your Twitter account. However, that means you have a rather one-way conversation – you’re broadcasting, in aContinue reading “How to make your live tweeting of an event indispensible for readers”

Using Storify as your one-stop social network search engine – and 12 tips on how to do it

Hmmm. Social networks. So much information, but in so many places. For journalists, this is both blessing and curse. Social network search engines vary in terms of reliability and depth of coverage – especially where keeping an eye on Facebook is factored in. Until now. Storify wasn’t built – as far as I’m aware –Continue reading “Using Storify as your one-stop social network search engine – and 12 tips on how to do it”

Here’s a picture which speaks just one word – but shows the value of social media search

If a picture can speak a thousands words, then I reckon the first one this picture on the front page of the Manchester Evening News would say is ‘ouch.’ A still from a video posted on YouTube, it shows the moment a suspected thief is hit by a car as he fled from a localContinue reading “Here’s a picture which speaks just one word – but shows the value of social media search”

Spundge, a tool all journalists should try – and 10 ways to use it

I don’t think – generally – journalists make enough of RSS feeds. RSS readers should be used by every journalist to create their own personal newswire, pulling in information from all over the web based on search words or specific feeds from sites you really should stay on top of, but invariably forget about. ButContinue reading “Spundge, a tool all journalists should try – and 10 ways to use it”