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Week 10: Journalism 2001. April 7, 2008. Review of last week’s news. Hard News: (murders, city council, government, etc.) Major local stories Major national/international stories Major sports stories Soft News: (retirements, school programs, human interest) Local stories

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review of last week s news
Review of last week’s news
  • Hard News:

(murders, city council, government, etc.)

    • Major local stories
    • Major national/international stories
    • Major sports stories
  • Soft News:

(retirements, school programs, human interest)

    • Local stories
    • National/international stories
    • Sports stories
announcements
Announcements
  • Next week we’ll review final project
    • Bring copies of stories to upload to eportfolio
sports story review
Sports story review
  • More impressive stories!
  • Easier when have exciting game/match to cover
  • Remember that the score is the “what happened” for a sports story
  • Quotes strongest high in story
  • Background information helpful
  • Watch tense
    • Team: its or their?
  • Style errors:
    • Time element
    • numerals
slide6
CLOQUET, Minn. - The Duluth Denfeld boys’ hockey team fell just two goals shy of the State Hockey Tournament, losing to St. Cloud Cathedral 3-1 in the section 5A final before a capacity crowd at Cloquet Area Recreation Center.

INT’L FALLS, Minn. – The International Falls Bronco boys basketball team beat the Cook gophers 71-53 before a huge crowd Friday night at the Falls High Gym.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – On a high from winning one of the longest series against Minnesota State, University of Minnesota showed no weakness as they went on to beat St. Cloud State University 3-2 on March 20, 2008.

upcoming stories
Upcoming stories
  • Sports Reporting Assignment
    • Will review/rewrite story in class tonight
  • Community Journalism reporting assignment
    • Final article due next week: April 14
    • Any problems?
  • Feature Story Assignment:
    • Story pitch due: April 9
    • First draft due: April 21
    • Final article due: May 5
feature story ideas from last week
Feature story ideas from last week!
  • End of year: Where students will live in summer, types of jobs
  • Proposed North Shore Scenic Railroad extension from Two Harbors to Biwabik
  • Spring hiking trails in area
  • UMD athlete profile
  • Impact of tuition increase
  • Summer grilling/food
  • Plays, cultural activities
  • Study abroad programs
let s brainstorm more feature ideas
Let’s brainstorm more feature ideas
  • Common jobs for students in the summer
  • Play review/analysis
  • Duluth resident reaction to Leatherheads
  • Nursing home resident
  • Chinese student adjustment
  • Bicycle riders on Munger Trail
  • Duluth Zoo
  • Aquarium
chapter 24 in depth investigative reporting
Chapter 24:In-depth & Investigative Reporting
  • In-depth article
    • Goes beyond a basic news story
    • Detailed information on subject
    • Investigative articles
    • Civic “watchdogs”
    • Months or years to complete
    • Need to remain focused
reporter as investigator
Reporter as investigator
  • Dig beneath the surface
  • Subject important, significant
  • Original work, not a handout
  • Go beyond the news release
  • “Smelling” a story
steps in gathering information
Steps in gathering information
  • Conducting research
    • Introduces a reporter to the language of a complex topic
    • Helps reporters find sources from different stories
    • Helps to formulate a list of questions
    • Provides other articles written on the same topic
    • Uncovers good/bad things to look for in interviews
    • Sources of information: Internet, newspaper library, databases
slide14
Interviewing
    • Talk to everyone you can
    • Interview as long as you can
    • Ask sources for names of additional sources
    • Know the answers to incriminating questions before you ask them
    • Use a tape recorder for in-depth or particularly sensitive interviews
    • Interviews from the outside in
    • Smoking-gun interviews
    • Double-checks and triple-checks
    • Confidential sources
writing an in depth story
Writing an in-depth story
  • Finding the right lead
    • Summary lead
    • Lead block and nut graph
  • Use bulleted paragraphs to summarize findings
  • Use anecdotes and observations
  • Finding the thread
  • Writing a first-person article
chapter 26 law
Chapter 26: Law
  • First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.— The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

reporters and their sources
Reporters and their sources
  • Shield Laws
    • Statutory laws to protect reporters from revealing sources
    • Each state has different interpretation
    • What does Minnesota have?
fair trial vs free press
Fair trial vs. free press
  • Conflict between First Amendment and Sixth Amendment
    • Sixth amendment: Rights of the accused to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury
  • Why would there be a conflict?
  • Jury Duty
where to learn more
Where to learn more
  • Minnesota statutes
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Federal circuit courts
  • Online legal research
libel
Libel
  • Libel: Communication of false information that damages an individual in his or her profession, business or calling.
    • Six requirements for libel action:
      • Publication
      • Identification
      • Defamatory nature of the story
      • Proof of falsity
      • Proof of fault
      • Actual damage to reputation
classes of libelous words
Classes of libelous words
  • Words imputing the commission of a criminal offense

Avoid:

John Doe was taken into custody Wednesday for murdering Sally Smith Tuesday night.

Better:

John Doe was taken into custody Wednesday in connection with (or in the investigation of) the Tuesday night slaying of Sally Smith.

slide25
Words that impute infection with a loathsome communicable disease of any kind that would tend to exclude one from society.

Is this news?:

John Doe, who was elected Wednesday to be president of the local chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, was treated last summer for a venereal disease, the Daily Bugle has learned.

slide26
Words that impute inability to perform, or want of integrity in the discharge of, duties of office or employment.

Don’t write:

Public school groundskeeper John Doe is unfit by temperament and intelligence to adequately perform his duties, sources who wish to remain anonymous said Wednesday.

  • Words that prejudice a particular person in his or her profession or trade.

Don’t write:

Attorney John Doe, who will represent the widow in the embezzlement case, is the most incompetent lawyer in town, according to courthouse observers.

defamation by implication
Defamation by implication
  • Implication created by the reporter’s organization of facts.

John Jones was seen entering the Shady Oaks motel yesterday with a woman. The motel is located in a known prostitution area.

quotations
Quotations
  • Reporter/news medium must assume responsibility for the statement if it is used
    • The fact that information was provided by a source does not necessarily mean that it is correct.
    • Beware of off-the-record tips passed along by sources, even high-ranking officials or law enforcement officers.
      • Don’t write: Police said that the alleged crook is in custody.
      • Instead: Police said that the man charged with the crime is in custody.
defenses against libel
Defenses against libel
  • Conditional defenses
    • Privilege of reporting: Fair, accurate reporting of official proceedings
    • Fair comment and criticism: Applies to opinions about matters of public concern
    • Neutral reportage: Report charges made by one responsible person or organization about another when both parties are involved in a public controversy
absolute libel defenses
Absolute libel defenses
  • Statute of limitations
    • Two years in Minnesota
  • Truth
  • Privilege of participant
    • Participants in official proceedings
  • Consent or authorization
  • Self-defense or right of reply
partial defenses
Partial defenses
  • Publication of a retraction: Clear admission of erroneous reporting
  • Facts showing no gross negligence or ill will
  • Facts showing that the reporter relied on a usually reliable source
the actual malice standard
The actual malice standard
  • The New York Times rule
    • New York Times Co. v. Sullivan: 1964
      • Supreme Court: To collect damages, a public official would have to prove the defendant acted with “actual malice;” knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard of whether it was false or not.
    • 1967: Supreme Court said that public figures, in addition to public officials, also have to show actual malice to recover libel damages.

Bottom line:

More protection from libel action if plaintiff is a public person.

libel in cyberspace
Libel in cyberspace
  • Distributor vs. publisher
  • 1996: Communications Decency Act
    • Protects online service providers from liability for publication of defamatory material
checklist for dealing with libel
Checklist for dealing with libel
  • Be aggressive – but don’t take foolish risks
  • Be fair – keep an open mind
  • Seek advice if you are unsure of your turf
journalism ethics
Journalism Ethics
  • “But I thought you were . . .”
    • When a source doesn't know you are a reporter
    • http://journalism.indiana.edu/resources/ethics/handling-sources/but-i-thought-you-were/
out of class assignments
Out-of-Class Assignments
  • Due today: News Release rewrites!
    • Email: lkragnes@d.umn.edu
  • Due April 14: Red Lake Cartoon Reaction article
in class assignment
In-Class Assignment
  • Editing classmate story
    • Make changes, give to reporter
    • Editing form returned to me: Worth 5 points
  • Rewrite sports stories
    • Using all of the editing suggestions, rewrite/edit your story
    • Email final copy to: lkragnes@d.umn.edu
      • Worth 5 points
    • Stories will be posted on class website
egradebook
Egradebook
  • Doublecheck assignments correct in egradebook:
    • http://www.d.umn.edu/egradebook

If grading tonight:

215 and above: A

190-214: B

165-189: C

140-164: D

Less than 140: F

portfolio
Portfolio
  • Store academic information on your Electronic Portfolio. Each student has 100 mb of storage.
  • Access Electronic Portfolio at: https://portfolio.umn.edu/portfolio/index.jsp