Multimedia Woes

I like multimedia, it’s necessary for photojournalists to be able to create multimedia. However, I am not super technologically savvy. Especially with older technology. AKA the wack video camera Madalyne and I checked out for our multimedia project.

It required a tape, strike number one. Madalyne had to buy a pack of three for $14. Strike number two: We don’t know how or have the means to put it on our computer. Strike number three: It looks like the footage is damaged in some way. Did we tamper with the tape? Spill something on it or play football with it? No. It just doesn’t want to work. You’re out, wack camera with tape.

So this means we’ll have to re-interview our two subjects. We won’t be able to re-film that b-roll, but I took stills at the event, so it’ll have to do.

Woe is me, booo hooooo. I’m done crying now.

Derek said he is going to tell the Missourian to never check those cameras out to anyone again. Praise be.



There is no privacy on the internet.

I don’t even need a hacker friend to let me know that. It’s just the way it is now. If someone is determined enough they can find a way to access your personal thoughts on a blog, the rowdy pictures on your facebook, and sometimes even your personal information such as your address, phone number, and social security number.

It’s scary, but knowing that your thoughts and personal details are broadcasted across the interwebs (often by your own choosing) doesn’t have to be terrifying. You just have to be aware. So by admitting that you self broadcast or have friends/family/foes that have broadcasted you, you’re that much closer to understanding the true reality of things: the internet is becoming the reality.

Employers use the internet to see who you are outside of an interview. Family uses it to check up on you. And some lonely souls use it to see if you would make a decent significant other. The age of the “online persona” is passing. People see your profile before they meet you in person, but that doesn’t mean they’ll only judge the “in-person you” by what they see in-person. First impressions last, it doesn’t matter if they’re cyber.


Tweet Tweet

In my social media peer review, my peer could not find my twitter account. I had a bit of difficulty finding hers as well, but I was persistent and eventually I came across the correct person. Even if she had found my twitter she would have probably suggested I use it much more. I’m not one to just get on twitter and look through tweets. They all come on too quickly for me to go through them and I end up feeling overwhelmed. Sigh.

Another obstacle I have with the twitter craze is that I don’t have a smartphone or tablet. My only mobile form of accessing the web is on my laptop, and it is a rather cumbersome thing to carry around with me when I don’t absolutely need it. I can’t check it in line at the grocery store or while I’m riding on the bus. I see now why my lack of a smartphone is an obstacle.

In the past I have linked to my blog through twitter. Doing so only requires me to hit the little blue bird button right after hitting the blue and white “f” for facebook. I don’t have to actually sign on to twitter. Same for sharing articles or funny videos. I don’t have to be on twitter to share stuff. I just don’t get the benefit of reading the news on there. But the Poynter article showed me that I really need to do much more with my twitter than just share some of my stuff every now and then. I need to be active on it if I’m going to have an online following and persona.

Wish me luck. I feel like this will all come easier as soon as I get enough monies to have a smartphone.

I Have to Use Technology? Ughhhh….

So there’s this thing called technology, and yeah, I use it abusively as an American citizen compared to several other peoples around the world, but I wouldn’t say I’m in love or anything. I like my snazzy digital camera, but I also appreciate the time and effort that goes into my film photography. (I’d really like to install a dark room in my house, but I don’t think the landlord would appreciate that.) Yeah, I am typing on a computer right now, I own an ipod, car, cell phone, blu-ray player, and television. BUT that does not qualify me as a fan and most certainly not as an expert.

I understand the uses of technology, and I understand that we’ve come to depend on them as first world citizens, but do I have to be an expert at Adobe Flash to get a job nowadays? It appears so. It seems every internship or job advertised in the journalism field requires some knowledge of Adobe products, often Flash and Illustrator are the important ones. Both of which frustrate me endlessly. I have no patience when it comes to the detail required to make a slight change in a graphic. I don’t like searching through the buttons and guessing what they mean, and  clicking the one word that destroys everything utterly to the point where there’s no hope for me to continue without some serious relaxation time. But as a photojournalist, I have adapted to using editing software such as Adobe Photoshop, but it appears that I may need to broaden my horizons with all of the sites out there about how to design apps, webpages, and essentially how to whore your site out on the internet. (Too brash?)

While I may not have to become an expert per se, it seems to be important to have a broad knowledge of different softwares and mediums. And of course, as an intern or entry level reporter, one would probably be stuck doing a lot of the grunt work that is meticulous and really draws on your broad knowledge base along with some trial and error thrown in just for giggles. But as a journalist advances in their career, I think they’re more able to specialize by picking a certain type of software or technology that really applies to their expertise and interests (such as Photoshop for photojournalists). After all, there are people hired just to make infographics. Yeah, there’s people that like the stuff. So let them enjoy their niche, and I’ll enjoy mine. Until then I”ll just have to suck it up.

Mojo Baby

In J2150 April 5th, 2012, we discussed the importance of Mojo -no, not Austin Powers style, mobile reporting, the way of the future. Nuria Mathog, a student in J2150, thinks mobile reporting is “time consuming”.

Nuria Mathog listens to instruction about mobile journalism in her 8 AM class Thursday April 5, 2012.

Excuse Me While I Drone

It’s true, I was slightly terrified when I saw a video of smart flying robots in lecture on Tuesday. I did not, however, run for the hills. Instead, I pondered the not-so-ethical uses these little buzzing creatures could possess. It’s scary enough that nations are already developing and harboring nuclear weapons, but when these smart little unmanned drones are added to the mix, all hell could break loose. They’re small which means they’re easily transported without detection and they have the ability to record and track areas with scary accuracy. It’s obvious these bugs are advanced and would be useful in combat situations, so someone is bound to use them. In fact, they already are.

But the journalism implications are far greater. As a profession, our ethics are what make us credible. And these nifty cameras certainly toe the line. Sure, it’s really cool to think that you can get an accurate image of a protest or riot without putting yourself in danger, but if this technology has the capability of seeing things that are often behind barriers, people start to wonder if there’s a drone above their head.

Americans enjoy their privacy, and while our privacy is more important to us than the privacy of say, Iraqis, a lot of people would still whistle blow on a news outlet that used a drone to peer into the private lives of people abroad. Human rights’ groups and right to privacy activists would raise a stink if any organization were to so blatantly ignore the rights of human beings, especially if it were an American organization supposedly known for touting ethics. But the benefits of using such a device are tempting. Policemen and businesses are already vying for their share in the drone epidemic, and especially in the case of the police, these benefits seem to outweigh the bad. Apprehending criminals is made easier by drone technology, and business farmers would be able to view their crops from above for a relatively low cost. So what’s to stop them?

Ethics, that beautiful word, yes. Commercial uses may be innocent enough, but it only takes one bad apple in the whole bunch to use the technology for less than honest reasons for it to become a problem. Releasing these bad boys on the market means that, well, they’ll be on the market. And we all know once something’s in the market place, there’s no turning back. Everyone will get their hands on one, because let’s be honest, they’re pretty cool. But that means that journalists could obtain one, and other, more malicious persons. This may all sound pessimistic, but it’s bound to happen. There are laws in place about gun licensing and possession, but look at how many illegal guns are out in the market right now; regulation is bound to be broken because the temptation is too high.

As far as journalism is concerned, these gadgets should stay out. The technology is incredibly effective and smart, but it’s dangerous and prying. There’s a reason why people aren’t allowed to just fly over any piece of land they so choose. And since these bugs fly, I’d say they should be subject to the same scrutiny. Remember, no one likes a” Peeping Tom”.

A Blog About Blogging-Why Not?

Blogging seems to be the next trend when it comes to journalism. I think it’s a grand idea, it offers a wide array of subjects to be perused at the reader’s convenience and with the ability to limit the content to one specific subject, there’s always a niche for everyone’s interests. I personally have ventured into blogging before with a very specific niche: satire.( I’ve grown to really enjoy satire with media outlets like The Onion and The Colbert Report, both of whom make fun of the subjects they cover, and the journalistic processes as well. I’ve always appreciated when someone can poke fun at themselves or laugh when someone pokes fun at them.

Blogging also allows just about anyone to get their voice out. It’s great for showcasing writing, artistic, and design talents without much of a cost. Every journalism professor nowadays tells students to have a least one blog going consistently to send with resumes and cover letters to potential employers. And since blogging allows for a more casual setting, a person can really relax and show who they are. The “anonymity” of the internet makes a person more daring, and more willing to publish than if they had to run their posts through several editors. (Not that they shouldn’t examine their own work with a discerning eye.)

A blog that I came across when browsing through the students in the capstone class caught my eye. Most of the others looked exactly like the templates on WordPress (and I know what they all look like now, trust me), but hers was very unique and inviting. On top of that, it made me want to read one of her posts. (  Her writing seemed to match the fun style of the layout, and I think it’s important for a blog to be representative not just of the content, but of the person who’s managing it. It’s a lot more personal than writing articles for a local paper or magazine. It’s designed and written by solely you. You are editor-in-chief, reporter, web designer, and photographer all in one. And blogs are generally opinions, so the blogger is really putting themselves out on the line for others to view straight on, instead of through a lace curtain pulled around them by a large publication or organization. Blogs are both easier to publish, and ballsier in my opinion. There’s the magic word, opinion. And now anybody on the internet can come across this page and comment with their own opinion. It’s beautiful, I tell yah.

Blog at