As many online news media outlets that are out there, very few have mastered what it takes to attract an audience in the right way. As crazy as it may seem, an honest news story doesn’t always attract an audience. Many online publications are aware of that which is why they will taint certain news stories that they are reporting so that it will be more appealing. They may do this in the headlines of their stories to entice readers to click on them. This can be misleading but it is better than altering the content of the news story. Although, there are some online publications that will change their stories to set themselves apart from other online publications that are reporting the same story. This also serves as a trick to the audience to make readers think that a particular online publication is more knowledgeable than the others. Online publications can also attract audiences with follow-up stories because it keeps their readers coming back for more. This enables online publications to establish a relationship with their audience because readers can rest assured that when their favorite online publication is in the know on a particular subject matter, they will be too.
They can track how many people are viewing their site by a variety of things. It can partially be tracked by how many comments or likes a news story will get depending on how the online publication is set up. Overall, page views and unique visitors determine the tracking of viewers. This is attributed to Google Analytics for many online publications and businesses. Google Analytics can track viewership by a monthly or yearly basis. This has definitely made it easier for online publications as opposed to if they had to track these statistics themselves, which would take a lot longer and would be more expensive.
Blogging has become a platform for anybody to voice their opinions and express their interests while incorporating what they think will be appealing to their readers. Blogging doesn’t really have a code of ethics for bloggers to adhere to, meaning more often than necessary, certain blogs that are really popular will appear very unprofessional or amateur. Although, there are some good blogs out there where it is obvious that they are ran by someone who has educated themselves on the appropriate manner in which it should be done. Below are a few blogs that I think are good and bad.
A good blog that has earned my respect is Perez Hilton’s blog. He is somewhat of a veteran in the blogging world and has had his share of ups and downs as a blogger. He originally had a messy approach to blogging where it wasn’t really filtered. This resulted in lawsuits and the burning of bridges, leaving him with a few enemies. He has since recovered from that and has a team of professionals under him that is constantly pushing his brand to newer heights. One thing that I personally think is cool about his blog is he has photo shoots for some of the people he interviews as opposed to just pulling their image from Google. I support what he has become in the media and how he has evolved as a blogger.
A bad blog, that I must admit I can’t get enough of, but is in dire need of reconstruction is, MediaTakeOut. Their stories are appealing , but they are often not accurate. That blog has little to no credibility and they are not afraid to step on someone’s toes to get information in regards to a certain celebrity. The primary stories they report revolving around entertainers lack class and depth. The writers and editors at the blog don’t appear to be qualified because there are often misspelled words in the headlines and content of the stories they report. They also don’t appear to have any boundaries either because they will bash children or will contribute to racial tension with their stories glorifying certain races while making others out to be inadequate in the beauty department. The concept of the stories they report are not too bad, but the way in which they deliver their stories needs to be revised.
A good blog that is pretty interesting is Necole Bitchie’s blog. What I admire about her as a blogger is that she has formed a lot of great relationships with the people she blogs about. When she reports on certain entertainers, readers can trust the credibility of what is being reported to them. Readers are assured that she has no ulterior motives other than giving them the tea on what they would like be informed on when she blogs. She rarely reports in a negative manner despite what the context of the story may be. She focuses on truth when reporting and keeps her personal opinions to a minimum. She is an unbiased blogger even though she has a platform to voice her thoughts in any way she pleases. She is a passionate blogger and has an inspiring story on how she entered the blogging world.
A blog that I have little to no resect for is TMZ. This blog has the tackiest approach to how they get their stories. They stalk celebrities for information pertaining to their personal lives. They report on celebrities being dead before they die. They constantly have to update their blog because they didn’t do the proper research the first time. There have been people who have lost their lives trying to get stories for TMZ. They just aren’t professional and offer little remorse for the people their stories affect. Their blog is the perfect example of one selling their soul to get ahead.
The power of statistics, especially online stats, is so cool. Any random internet journalist can gather and quote a litany of statistics on anything in the world and they will immediately appear to be knowledgeable. The crazy part is that most people won’t even check to see if the statistics they have been informed on are even accurate. When we see journalists reporting statistics, we take it at face value and we don’t question it because we trust that they wouldn’t lie to us and that they have our best interest at heart. The use of statistics, either through word of mouth or graphically, is such an effective way to report or argue an issue which is why many journalists, particularly internet journalists, will take that approach when covering topics dealing with teen pregnancies, sex trafficking, dating, bullying, poverty, or unemployment just to name a few. It can be like the blind leading the blind sometimes because journalists and society as a whole aren’t motivated enough to do research on these statistics. Broadcast journalists usually read statistics that have been given to them either on a teleprompter or a sheet of paper. Print journalists often cite statistics from other sources, and then store them in a database. Those sorts of things will have one questioning themselves on if they should even trust any statistics a journalist provides. Of course statistics are news worthy and they capture society’s attention with their numerical importance, especially in this digital age. But is the sole purpose of bar and line graphs designed to visually manipulate readers into adopting the perspective of the journalist reporting them? Some journalists will use statistics to their advantage by simply scaring their readers into changing their views on a promoted issue, throwing accuracy out the window.
For the longest time, news was only served in print form. If people wanted to be informed on current events, previous incidents, or even future projections, they could “read ALL about it” in their local newspapers. Eventually, news in print form expanded to magazines, which could be issued to people all over. The best part about news in a magazine, other than it including things not pertaining to just the local areas, was the colorful pictures. These colorful pictures were all readers had to relate to the story that these pictures were based off of. That is until many years down the line, digital media established itself as a video based medium.
When news audiences are informed about a particular story, they can get a glimpse of what may have occurred by a simple video displaying locations, interviews, and objects. These videos can sometimes be edited so well that even if the TV is muted, one can still get a gist of what is occurring or what had occurred. Without these videos, viewers would probably find it difficult to identify with the stores being reported to them such as they do now. For example: If a news station reported a child missing and they only displayed the child’s picture, name, personal information, the general public may have some level of sympathy for that child and their family but that alone doesn’t build a connection to the story. However, if there is a video being shown displaying the missing child’s family crying or talking about how much they miss the missing child, that may ignite some emotional connection between the viewers and the missing child.
The incorporation of videography in news has taken broadcasting to a much higher level. I personally can’t imagine watching the news without it. The world has become accustomed to being spoon fed their news and what better way than to just show them through video. As humans, many of us are visual learners. As news trends have shown, we want to associate video with what we receive in our news. It’s no longer enough to have the facts simply conveyed to us through words.
When I think of Twitter, I ask myself, how did it get to be so popular? Yes, Twitter allows you to upload pictures or even share them via Facebook and Instagram, but who knew that millions of people would join a site solely designed for its users to express their thoughts and feelings. I suppose that the more followers you have, the more interesting your heart and mind must be. Myspace and Facebook offer a variety of features including the opportunity for its users to posts their thoughts and feelings. However, Twitter is a place where people can not only express their deepest thoughts but be given a platform to talk to people they never would have been able to otherwise without the limitations of knowing who they are. Twitter has played a role in formalizing and unfortunately demolishing marriages, divorces, careers, education, finances, as well as the relationships of family and friends. Overall, Twitter is an impactful social networking site that almost seems timeless in our culture.
Twitter, a social networking site established in 2006, is a reelection of the levels of advancement in our communication system. It can compete with not only the traditional telecommunication outlets but the journalistic ones as well. Also, those traditional journalism outlets have embraced Twitter as an alternative avenue to inform, and even entertain their respective followers. People have the opportunity to tweet those that they may not have access to via phone, address, or email. They can receive news fast that they may miss on the radio or television due to their lack of access. Although, it has its perks, it paralyzes the language of its users when it only allows tweets to be limited to 140 characters. In many cases you have to “dumb” down your tweet if you want to get a really good point across or if you have a lot to express on your mind. Facebook and Myspace aren’t limited by characters or content in the areas of posting your thoughts and feelings. What makes Twitter so great in comparison to Myspace and Facebook?
With there being so many different forms of print media out there because of the advances of the internet, they can all sometimes begin to seem the same, especially if they are all covering the same topic. Many news organizations pride themselves in their attempts to stand out even in the smallest of ways. Some of these methods are geared to result in a more interactive format between the readers and the news outlet. This can sometimes be done through contests where news organizations will have citizen reporters submit stories, and whichever one is the best will be featured in their paper or on their website. This is called crowd sourcing.
Many news organizations have become aware of what blogging has done for many news readers out there, such as, giving them a voice. So they strive to afford readers a platform to have their opinions and thoughts heard on a more known and respectable scale. Simple things that give spotlight to individuals and are often seen on many websites and magazines/newspapers are featured in categories, such as, best dressed in a particular city or state, single person of the month, or Good Samaritan in their local area are designed to reel in more readers. The goal is to establish certain contests for readers to enter so that they can see themselves in the spotlight leading to a more loyal relationship with that particular news media.
One method mentioned in the reading how journalists can forge a closer relationship with their readers is called beatblogging. Perhaps, readers only care about a few stories instead of everything that is in the paper or on a website. This is especially useful for major news stories that are talked about for entire weeks. For example, imagine if Jay-Z and Beyoncé were to get a divorce. That would be a story the whole world would be talking about. An entertainment reporter for E! News or BET would be smart to interact with the many readers interested in the story by creating a beatblog or Facebook page, entirely devoted to the story.