COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 8 Inquiry: Think about your interests

Think about how you might use this network personally, and then how you might use it professionally. Reflect on this on your blog.

Figure 1: Foundd Home Screen Source: Screen capture Foundd (2015)
Figure 1: Foundd Home Screen
Source: Screen capture Foundd (2015)

I have quite a number of interests such as: listening to music, watching movies and shows, playing games, lastly reading books. I chose to pick my interest in movies and shows. Surprisingly, there is not actually a lot of social media networking websites for fans of television shows and movies; at least not in my Google search.

There are a few networking sites that I know of that which were created specifically for the movie Twilight. These have now become more of a generalised networking where anyone can be any character. However, this was not appropriate for the task at hand, so I Googled it.

I found a social networking website ‘Foundd’. This is a website where you rate movies, shows and games. You also get recommendations after you rate ten items from one of the previous options mentioned.

I could see myself using this social networking website to find out movies, shows and games that might interest me. It lists the year and genre of the recommended items as well as some background information.

On the Foundd (2015) page in their website information is a statement with statistics. “Our quest was to create something that people love to use often and for a long time, we were able to identify three seemingly uncorrelated things that stood out to us:

  • People who had friends who also used Foundd stuck with it for over a year. To be more precise, 80% of those users were still active after 12 months.
  • 95% of growth came from iPhones and iPads (0.5 million downloads).
  • Over 14 million ratings were made on Foundd.”

These statistics provide general feedback information on the website and some of the major aspects. With over 14 million views it means that this website is fairly popular. The biggest audience is from those using iPhones and iPads thus the main focus is on making the website easy to navigate on mobiles.

Their website also lists three principles for an improved Foundd:

  • Make the recommendations from people, not an algorithm.
  • Focus on mobile.
  • Expressing your thoughts and feelings about a movie should be the core experience on Foundd.

I could use this website in a professional matter by looking up information on a movie that an actor previously played in or for a reference when reviewing a show or movie that has been released. Unfortunately, unless I was covering the subject of movies, shows or games in an article, there really would not be much use to me.

Figure Reference

Foundd 2015, Trending on Foundd, digital image, viewed 5 September 2015, https://foundd.com/home

References

Foundd 2015, Trending on Foundd, viewed 5 September 2015, https://foundd.com/home

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COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 7 Technical: Complete Quizzes 7A (Spelling) and 7B (Style)

The ultimate rule is to write so that the reader can understand your intended meaning (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith 2012, p.80).

For this technical exercise we were to review chapters five and eight of Hicks (2013). In these chapters Hicks (2013) talks about spelling and style, where it informs us about the impact that style has on writing.

I achieved 80% on my first attempt for quiz seven (a). One of my mistakes was a common error I have obviously made over the years when using the word ‘principle’ and the word ‘principal’ as my general understanding of the word principal was that it was the head of school which was called principal (Hicks 2013).

I frequently mix up the words ‘principle’ and ‘principal’ this is because my general understanding of the word principal was that it was the head of school whereas Hicks (2013, p.171) states that principal means: main or head. The word principle means basis (Hicks 2013, p.171).

I achieved 90% on my first attempt for quiz seven (a) because I got the question about if a writing piece is really good a reader will see technique wrong due to second guessing myself.

Reflecting over all of my quiz results I find that at least 70% of the time I have made mistakes due to me not paying enough attention to either the textbook or the questions. This seems to be a bad habit of mine.

References

Hicks, W 2013, English for journalists, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

Whitaker, R, Ramsey, J & Smith, R 2012, Media writing: print broadcast and public relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 7 Practical: reflecting on your assessment 1

Did you pick up all issues on your first proofread? Were there many and do you think you corrected them all?

It was predictable that I did not pick up all errors on my first proofread. I still missed a number of other errors both on my first and second proofread.

In fact on my fourth proofread I still came up with a couple of issues. I am unsure whether I have corrected all the issues in my assignment, as there may be more that I just cannot see.

I have relied on both Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith (2012) and Hicks (2013) to try to help me in properly writing and structuring the news story. The sources were also used to help me in properly writing and structuring the news release.

Was it helpful having a checklist and do you think it will make a difference to your overall result?

It was helpful to have a checklist; however, it would have been more helpful if the checklist could have included some more specific requirements rather than the generalised information which was included.

I do believe that the checklist would have made a difference to my overall marks as it reminded me to review other certain aspects that I would have otherwise forgotten.

References

Hicks, W 2013, English for journalists, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

Whitaker, R, Ramsey, J & Smith, R 2012, Media writing: print broadcast and public relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 7 Inquiry: Review a newsletter

Figure 1: Crocodile Specialist Group Newsletter Source: IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group (CSG) 2015
Figure 1: Crocodile Specialist Group Newsletter
Source: IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group (CSG) 2015

i. What kinds of stories are in the newsletter?

Some of the information included are:

  • obituaries
  • book reviews
  • information on the committee meeting
  • regional reports and a lot more.

According to Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith (2012) information should be broken up into small paragraphs. However, all of these stories are in depth with a large volume of text and barely any space to break it up. Which makes it a requirement to have a deep focus or concentration to try to understand what it was all about  .

ii. How do these target the organisation’s audience?

According to Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith (2012) a newsletter is defined by its function. This means that it is published or produced to present its message to the audience.

Well the organisation’s newsletter is not generally aimed at the public, instead it targets a more specific audience. This newsletter’s target audience would be CSG members and a number of other interested parties which may include: specialists, scientists, and academics.

For this reason I see that it fits its purpose rather well as it is informing.

iii. If you were a science journalist, is there anything you may be interested in following up as a story, and why?

I actually had a lot of trouble following this newsletter and what it was talking about, so after reading this newsletter a third time I came across a book review that was rather effective with the in depth analytics.

Figure 2: Book review Source  Ross (2015)
Figure 2: Book review
Source Ross (2015)

I would be interested in a follow up story of this as it was fascinating to see the review. Although perhaps if it was to become a follow up story it could include pictures of the book it is reviewing.

iv.What do you think is effective or otherwise about this newsletter?

The one thing I found effective was the pictures included in this newsletter as these did capture my attention and did interest me.

Things that could be improved by this newsletter is a table of contents, more pictures or diagrams and lastly more spacing between each piece.

Figure References

IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group (CSG) 2015, Crocodile specialist group newsletter, digital image, viewed 1 September 2015, http://www.iucncsg.org/365_docs/attachments/protarea/34%282-a5b9578f.pdf

References

IUCN-SSC Crocodile Specialist Group (CSG) 2015, ‘Crocodile specialist group newsletter’, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 1-44, viewed 1 September 2015, http://www.iucncsg.org/

Whitaker, R, Ramsey, J & Smith, R 2012, Media writing: print broadcast and public relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 6: Practical: Take a series of photos (5 – 10) and caption them

The Life Story of Casper 2000 – 2015.

Figure 1: My family got Casper from the RSPCA  six weeks old 1st Jan 2001 the same year the September 11 event happened. Source: My family
Figure 2: This was Casper’s first Christmas with us 2001, with one of her first presents on the couch with her. Source: My Family
Figure 3: 2002 A picture we took of Casper as we were about to leave her in the care of RSPCA while we travelled from our home near Bundy to Sydney to visit family. Source: My family
Figure: 2006 Casper was recently attacked by other dogs and had her left ear ripped open, she got stitches and was back to normal about to roll onto her back on the bean bags Source: My Family
Figure 4: 2006 Casper was recently attacked by other dogs and had her left ear ripped open, she got stitches and was back to normal about to roll onto her back on the bean bags
Source: My Family
Figure 4: This Picture was taken in 2008 when we were renting at Bagara while our current house was being built. The house we were renting was terrible for all our family's health. Source: Me
Figure 5: This Picture was taken in 2008 when we were renting at Bagara while our current house was being built. The house we were renting was terrible for all our family’s health.
Source: Me
Figure 6: 2009 when we first moved into our new house, Casper was sleeping on her couch. Source: My Family
Figure 6: This was taken in mum's new car in 2012 as we had to buy a new one due to an accident caused by someone turning on us. Casper loved being in the car, ever since a puppy it was her favourite place. Source: Me
Figure 7: This was taken in mum’s new car in 2012 as we had to buy a new one due to an accident caused by someone turning on us. Casper loved being in the car, ever since a puppy it was her favourite place.
Source: Me
Figure 7: This was taken 2014 on my Brother's birthday, she was looking up at my mum for food at the time as she often would when mum was in the kitchen. Source: Me
Figure 8: This was taken 2014 on my Brother’s birthday, she was looking up at my mum for food at the time as she often would when mum was in the kitchen.
Source: Me
Figure 9: The very last family christmas with Casper in 2014. Source: Myself
Figure: One of the very last pictures ever taken of Casper while she was being dried after having a bath, it was her favourite part of the whole thing.
Figure 10: One of the very last pictures ever taken of Casper while she was being dried after having a bath, it was her favourite part of the whole thing.

COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 6 Technical: Complete Quiz 6A And Quiz 6B – Punctuation

“The point of punctuation is to make writing easier to read,” (Hicks 2013).

I was required to read chapter six of Hicks (2013) that is about punctuation. There were some useful information even on the first page which I would not have guessed.

I did not realise until reading Hicks (2013) that headlines, standfirsts and captions rarely have the final full stops. For quiz six (a) I got 100% on the first go as I obviously read the questions correctly and there was nothing I did not already understand.

English has always been my hardest subject to learn, which is weird considering it is the first and only language I speak. But, it seems that I am getting a lot better with it than I used to be. Now I barely use commas whereas before I never used anything else.

For quiz six (b) I got 70% on my first attempt. I think the main issue here was that I did not read some of the questions correctly, one of the questions asked me which example was incorrect; whereas I thought it said the word correct.

Which caused me to select the wrong answer. I have to remember to read the questions carefully and precisely.

References

Hicks, W 2013, English for journalists, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

COMM1107 Media Writing Blog Activities Week 6 Inquiry: Review a Cirque de Soleil Media Kit.

Figure 1: Kurios Cabinet of Curiosities Source: Cirque du Soleil 2015
Figure 1: Kurios Cabinet of Curiosities
Source: Cirque du Soleil 2015

For this task we were asked to select a show. We were then asked to review both the press kit and then the supplementary media for the show. Kurious Cabinets of Curiosities was chosen and is currently touring in America (Cirque du Soleil 2015).

On the Cirque du Soleil (2015) website there is a number of media included such as

  • the video previewing the show
  • the press kit
  • press contacts
  • news releases
  • the official website link.

The press release lists facts such as:

  • who the team is for the show
  • characters
  • the acts
  • the set design
  • mission statement
  • show statistics

There are also pictures included in the press kit that support the information that they have used (Cirque du Soleil 2010).

There are a number of ways this information could be incorporated in a news story. This is because this information has a number of different news values which could potentially be turned into a news story (Bainbridge Goc & Tynan 2011).

However, it would depend on which company or news outlet the story would be written for. If it was written for a local newspaper the angle might be to tell the community about the show coming to their local area, and where to see it (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith 2012).

A brief history of the show with pictures and videos would be incorporated into the news story if the focus was on proximity (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith 2012). This would be to create interest among people so that they might go to see it (Bainbridge Goc & Tynan 2011).

This information would be most useful to write a backgrounder story, the reason for this is according to Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith (2012) backgrounders are lengthy serious features which provide the reader with the information on:

  • businesses
  • people
  • events and a number of other things.

I would have liked to have seen more of the show in the video Cirque du Soleil (2015) provides or even in the press release however it is structured and formatted this particular way for the journalists and public relations audience (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith 2012).

Reference list

Bainbridge, J, Goc, N & Tynan, L 2011, Media & Journalism, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne.

Cirque du Soleil 2010, Kurios Cabinet of Curiosities press kit, viewed 1 September 2015, https://static01.cirquedusoleil.com/en/~/media/press/PDF/kurios/kurios-presskit.pdf

Cirque du Soleil 2015, Kurios Cabinet of Curiosities, viewed 1 September 2015, https://www.cirquedusoleil.com/en/press/kits/shows/kurios/creators.aspx

Whitaker, R, Ramsey, J & Smith, R 2012, Media writing: print broadcast and public relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.