Tag Archives: media

Memo to Staff: An Exciting Future For Mashable


Earlier today we announced a big milestone at Mashable – bringing on Jim Roberts as our Executive Editor and Chief Content Officer. Jim will be instrumental in growing Mashable’s audience, as well as our newsroom team. I wanted to share my message to the team about what this means for Mashable, but even more so, where we see media going. It is also a good time to mention that we will be hiring soon…!

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Team Mashable,

Today we are announcing an important and exciting addition to our family – Jim Roberts. Jim joins our team as Executive Editor and Chief Content Officer.

Many of you may know Jim from Twitter as @nycjim, from his work as Executive Editor of Reuters Digital, and from his years at The New York Times where he was most recently Assistant Managing Editor, overseeing the digital newsroom including video, social media and breaking news.

Jim is a journalism giant and social media star. He deeply understands the intersection of news, culture and the social web. He was early in the space and has continued to be a steady and authoritative voice on media innovation.

He will grow our editorial operation, including expansion into new coverage areas, storytelling formats and ways of interacting with our community. Working alongside Lance Ulanoff, he will also push Mashable deeper and broader into its existing areas of award winning coverage, including technology, business and web culture.

Mashable is always about what’s next.

Eight years ago when this all started out, ‘what’s next’ was the exciting promises of the new consumer internet. Today understanding ‘what’s next’ means bringing our audience content about the coming trends in social media, technology, culture, business, entertainment and society.

It’s an incredibly exciting time to be where we are and doing what we do.

Now more than ever, we have a deep commitment to our mission of empowering and inspiring people around the world by telling highly sharable, inspirational and informative stories that define the importance of digital innovation, in all forms.

In the last year Mashable has grown our community and the ways we connect with them. Our edit team has charted the birth of wearable tech, chronicled deep debate about the future of online privacy, and connected with our community members in Egypt, India and Brazil to share stories.

What’s next in our world is coming faster than ever, and it has never been more important to be great at what we do. We are entering a new era.

This is a time when journalism is needed more than ever; when community curation is no longer a luxury, and verification is critical. Mashable has always played a role in interpreting what’s next, and now we have both a huge opportunity and responsibility to report on this next era of innovation.

Jim joins our already incredible team, which deeply understands what it means to build a company that creates real value for its community. He has been pushing these goals for a long time.

Just a few of his accomplishments:

  • Jim presided over rapid expansion of NYTimes.com, helping build and lead a staff of interactive and multimedia specialists, placing aggressive emphasis on real-time news response, and aggressively growing the audience.
  • He was the top editor of NYTimes.com with responsibility for day-to-day and (minute-to-minute) presentation of news on nytimes.com and long-term planning of digital coverage of major news events and long-term reporting projects.
  • Jim was a vocal advocate of The Times’ video strategy, and helped lead the build-out of live video coverage of the 2012 Presidential campaign.
  • He encouraged innovative digital storytelling and news-presentation techniques, including dynamic data-driven graphics, multimedia, social media and user-generated content.

Jim is an ideal editorial leader for what’s next at Mashable. He will join us in November.

Here is his first byline on Mashable where he shares his excitement for our future: http://mashable.com/2013/10/30/jim-roberts-mashable/

Please join me in giving Jim a proper social media welcome to the Mashable team!

-Pete

Posted by:Pete Cashmore

 

It’s good to share. So share!


MATTER readers now have the tools to share stories for free with their friends.

There are many problems that journalism struggles with at the moment — some of them important, some of them sideshows. But one of the biggest, knottiest issues that tangles everyone up time and time again is the dilemma of payment versus visibility.

That is: if you don’t give your work away for free, nobody sees it. But if you give it away for free, it’s very hard to pay for the journalism you’re making.

It’s a Catch 22. On the one hand, you can operate at massive scale and chase dwindling ad revenues with ever-greater traffic (hello, Buzzfeed). On the other, you find a form of cross-subsidy that helps pay the bills a little (this is where I wave to The Guardian). Then there are those who come from the opposite end: struggling to get visibility from behind a subscription barrier. That’s why you see so many variants on the so-called “leaky paywall”: it’s free if you come from Twitter, it’s free for the first 10 or 20 articles, and so on.

Oh wait. That’s three hands. Don’t worry: stick with me — and my trio of mitts. We’re getting there.

Here’s what we think:

Being visible doesn’t have to mean being cheap

At MATTER, we’re not playing the volume game. It’s fine for some people, but we don’t think it would support the kind of time-consuming, expensive, in-depth work we do. And that means we’re faced with the same payment/visibility problem as other people.

So what are we doing? We’re giving you the tools.

We’ve decided to give readers the ability to share stories with friends right on our pages. On every single article, you’ll find a new feature that gives anyone who reads a MATTER piece — people who have bought one-off singles, our Members, our Kickstarter backers — the ability to share it with other people. For free.

That’s right. Paying 99c gives you access to our great journalism, and a bunch. But it also gives you the ability to let other people read our stories too.

Each story now includes this little box of magic.

Sharing is straightforward. You just enter your name in the box, plug in the email address of the person you want to send it to, and hit “Invite”. They get an email that invites them to read the article, and you get a namecheck. And, importantly, they don’t pay a cent: it’s the equivalent of letting a friend read over your shoulder, or lending them the book you enjoyed.

For us, it’s a way to try and get through the visibility barrier. For readers, it’s a way to spread great ideas.

So please, give it a try.


MATTER is a micropublisher that got its first footing on Kickstarter and became part of Medium — the site you’re reading now — earlier this year. It produces award-winning, in-depth, longform journalism on science, technology, and the ideas shaping our future. Each one costs 99c in web, ebook and audiobook form, or you can subscribe. Go and take a look!

Written by

Deep, intelligent journalism about the future.

 

Journalism Might Actually Be Dying, BECAUSE OF COURSE


The Huffington Post is ruining everything

Don’t get me wrong, I love that content creators and publishers are starting to understand how people like to consume all forms of media. However, within the last few weeks it has become clear that the race for the all-mighty “click” has started to genuinely ruin the written word.

On the heels of major success and virality over at BuzzFeed, news outlets have jumped on the bandwagon of adopting more human-like lingo to draw in readers. At first, I welcomed this more digestable way of consuming information. One specific phrase though has really jumped the shark.

“Because of course.”

After noticing it pop in a few headlines from The Huffington Post in the past week alone, I did a quick search on their website to see if it was popping up a little too often.

And it was…


Because of course.

Because of course.

Because of course.

Because of course.

Because of course.

Getting annoyed yet?


Because of course.

Sorry, I’ll stop.

While these headlines are just a few examples of the overuse and abuse of this phrase, it is also representative of a larger problem in the industry. Media companies will sacrifice quality and integrity for a few temporary clicks and eyeballs. More importantly, it shows a total lack of creativity and originality in how they are choosing to go about obtaining said eyeballs.

If you think about it, abusing popular phrases in headlines is the journalistic equivalent of a parent saying things like “bestie” to win the approval of their children’s friends during carpool.

It’s not a good look.

Don’t let this happen to you, news media.

So, as most kids do in response to a humiliating parent, I beg you (my friends) to ignore these articles and avoid giving sites like The Huffington Post reason to believe they are a “cool” news source.

Let’s force them to be a bit more creative.

Written by

“I am interested in the way that time records itself into things and people.” www.JohnBuysse.com

 

Newsprint as a canvas


there’s one place newspapers can still beat mobile.

there’s one place newspapers can still beat mobile.

I’m at a journalism conference right now, which inevitably leads to contemplation about the future of the industry.

At a session on circulation and distribution an editor from a college newspaper in Montreal asked for advice in expanding distribution to Metro stops in the city.

“Well you’re going to get a massive increase in circulation,” said the distribution expert.

On its face this notion makes sense. Commuters are bored, held hostage by their busses and subways. Numerous publications are founded—or at least sustained in large part—for and by such commuters. A defining feature of these papers is their size, with most printed as tabloids for easy transit reading. Even most major metro newspapers have shrunk their widths to be more “reader friendly.”

The supreme irony is that the more “ convenient” print tries to be, the faster they herald their utter demise. A newspaper aiming to be convenient will always fail when faced with cellphones, e-readers and tablets.

One publication bucking the trend—and earning accolades for doing so—is The Grid, Toronto’s alternative weekly. The relatively new publication (born a little over two years ago out of the ashes of Eye Weekly) has put a premium on beautiful design. Their photo editor and graphic designer spoke at an inspiring session at the conference today. The editor explained:

“We’re trying to change the paradigm of what a print publication can be.”

What that means for The Grid, which is admittedly light on actual news, is a heavy visual emphasis.

“When my viewer looks at my photos I want them to see, smell, hear. They should feel like they are at the event.”

The Grid has become known for their multi-page spreads. Bringing 35 chefs together for a massive group photo of them lined up in front of a food cart, for example. Or taking eight pages to give a vivid 365-degree view of a boat for a story about the revival of Toronto’s harbor.

Technology ultimately holds the upper-hand over print. Moving graphics, interactive features, video and audio are all impossible to put on paper. But if for no other reason than ad revenue, publications are going to have to keep putting out a print product for a long time—and they hold one supreme advantage over consuming news on screens: size.

Cellphones have now mastered the art of displaying a scrollable column of text (see image below) which will always be preferable to dealing with a physical newspaper on a crowded subway train.

But it’s possible for dead trees, covered in vivid, large-format images, to succeed. It’s possible for newspapers to stop cramming five or six stories on their front page and begin using newsprint as a unique canvas for well-curated and visually engaging news.

Even the best newspaper websites still lag behind the best designed papers. This is because they’re locked into templates that while necessary for managing the content flow, are visually uninspired. That will change one day, but for now the sooner newspapers realize their comparative advantages over mobile apps and websites, the better their chances are for thriving over the next few years.

Written by

Features Editor at The Ubyssey, Western Canada & Pacific NW Correspondent for JTA. Love writing, soccer, Ethiopian food.

 

Stop Complaining about Your PR Firm. Here’s How the Media Works


Publicist - 3
Publicist – 3 (Photo credit: Isabelle + Stéphane Gallay)

 

Startups need to stop blaming publicists and journalists for their lack of press and learn how the media works. Here’s a peek behind the curtain.

 

“Journalists are biased.” “Our PR firm just doesn’t ‘get’ our message.” “We need at least one media hit a week.” Oh, and my personal favorite: “Can we review and edit quotes before the piece is published?”

As a journalist who writes about pretty much everything for pretty much everyone (most recently The Wall Street JournalFast Company, and Smithsonian Magazine), all of the above are things I hear on a pretty regular basis.

They’re also indicative of a rather significant misunderstanding of how the media works. That’s largely because both people who work in the media and the PR industry as a whole sort of like to keep it that way, in spite of the fact that they also like to complain about how no one else gets it. Members of the media have had just about everything stripped of us in the last decade—salary, job security, respect—but the one thing we have left is the cloak of mystery surrounding what we do, and so we tend to cling to it. Hey, I may get paid shit, but when I sit next to people on planes and they ask me what I do, that question always leads to several more because at least what I do is interesting and that counts for something, right? Right?

Publicists have an even clearer cut reason for keeping their knowledge of the media to themselves: It’s the product they’re selling. If you know how things work, the thinking goes, what do you need them for? You can just craft your own media strategy and hire a few interns to execute it for you. Unfortunately, that logic keeps publicists from educating their clients, which only makes their job—and mine—harder.

source

read more -> https://medium.com/on-startups/ba600f39a13d

 

 

 

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Tara Reid Shows Off Bikini Body In Ibiza !!!! (PHOTO)


The following excerpt is from the Huffington Post!

It’s always Taradise when you’re Tara Reid. That’s right, the 37-year-old “Sharknado” actress is back at the bikini-in-an-exotic-location game again, this time posing in a rainbow-colored two-piece on what appears to be a boat in Ibiza.

Let’s hope that Reid didn’t see any whale sharks while sailing the Spanish waters. Judging from her incoherent explanation of marine life recently, she may not know exactly what to do if she did. “So I look up ‘sharks’ on the Internet and I see ‘whale sharks,’ so I’m like, that must mean that a whale and a shark have sex. And then I think, ‘Well, how do a whale and a shark have sex?’” Reid said two weeks ago on a Discovery Channel talk show.

She continued: “No, there is a thing called whale sharks, and then I realized whales are mammals and sharks are animals, so they have nothing to do with each other.”

BRzrCtmCQAAP6Ew

Shilpa Shetty

Shilpa Shetty thanks well-wishers on Twitter !!!


The following content is from IndiaTimes!

NEW DELHI: Actress and Rajasthan Royals co-owner Shilpa Shetty on Sunday took to Twitter to express her happiness after her husband, Raj Kundra, was absolved of fixing charges by the BCCI-appointed two-member probe panel.

Reacting to the news after Kundra was cleared of all charges, Shilpa tweeted, “there is a God:) love u..and TRUTH PREVAILS. Thanku tweetos for all the unconditional support love and prayers.”

The social networking site was also swamped with congratulatory messages from the well-wishers to the celebrity couple.

Shilpa Shetty

Two Words Can Make All the Difference

The Future of Facebook


Facebook CEO Zuckerberg addresses the audience during a media event at Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park

Facebook is a hugely popular social networking site dedicated to bringing friends and family closer together. No one, not even Mark Zuckerberg (one of the main creators of Facebook) could have imagined the company to be where it is today.

One sixth of the worlds population Is currently registered as having created an official Facebook account since 2004. There are roughly six billion people worldwide and seven hundred million websites on the Internet.

Alexa, a web traffic agency, assigns each website a popularity rank based on the number of visitors a website receives and the number of quality sites linking in (among other measurements). The websites which fall below the ‘one million’ in global traffic rank on Alexa are considered the internets “one percent rule” (meaning these are the one percent of websites being read by the general public).

Facebook happens to be the second most talked about website (globally) according to the Alexa traffic rank. Google is, as expected, ranked number one on the list.

Facebook is much too popular a network to fall down in the rankings over the next few decades. The founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, has hinted at moving the social network in the direction of an online newspaper of sorts.

Whether this is true or not is yet to be seen but I believe I speak for all of us when I say I am excited to see the continuous evolution of Facebook take place over the years.

(Via. John Teevan – Student)

An illustration picture shows the logo of the Website Twitter on an Ipad, in Bordeaux

Twitter beefs up security safeguards after recent attacks


An illustration picture shows the logo of the Website Twitter on an Ipad, in Bordeaux

(Reuters) – Twitter Inc began introducing new technology on Wednesday to shore up security for users, responding to a spate of recent attacks on prominent accounts including those owned by the Associated Press and Financial Times.

Twitter said in a blog post it has begun to introduce “login verification,” a form of two-factor authentication in security industry parlance. The feature asks users to confirm their identity after a typical log-in, by sending a six-digit code to smartphones that must then be typed in to complete a sign-on.

The microblogging service, considered one of the most important communications platforms today, has not done enough to help protect users’ accounts, critics say. That criticism intensified after a fake tweet sent from the AP’s account in April about a non-existent White House explosion briefly roiled U.S. financial markets.

“There’s a second check to make sure it’s really you,” the company said on its official blog.

Repeated hacking incidents have raised questions about Twitter’s credibility and reliability just as it is beginning to assume a central role in a fast-changing media landscape, with the volume of tweets rising to more than 400 million a day.

(Reporting by Edwin Chan; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

google-music

Google Play Music All Access Review: It’s Not a Spotify Competitor After All


Let’s get this out of the way: Google Play Music All Access is a terrible name, rolling off the tongue like a mouthful of marbles. I’m not sure what Google was thinking here, adopting such a clunky moniker for a fledgling streaming music service whose media-decreed rivals go by punchier handles like Pandora, Spotify, Rdio and Grooveshark. Why not something simpler like Google Music, leaving “All Access” to describe one of the subscription tiers? Even the name Google Play sounds catchier and more appropriate for something that dishes up tunes, but then Google already uses those two words (somewhat incongruously) to describe its entire digital distribution platform, from Android apps, devices and games to books, magazines and music.

google-play-music-all-access

Google Play Music All Access it is then, and I’ll henceforth be referring to it as GPMAA for sanity’s sake (or, as I’ve been pronouncing it out loud, “gup-mah”).

Google unveiled GPMAA yesterday at its annual I/O conference during an over three-hour developer-focused keynote, though of that time, the company only devoted a few minutes to touch on the service’s basic features. As suspected, GPMAA represents Google’s attempt to offer a subscription-based music service, streaming “millions” of songs — intermingled with up to 20,000 more, uploadable or song-matched from your personal library — for $10 a month ($8 a month if you sign up by the end of June). Chris Yerga, Google’s engineering director who steered this part of the keynote, explained that GPMAA would include common music streaming features like curated playlists, album recommendations and a build-your-own-radio-station feature.

In other words, GPMAA isn’t a wildly new product so much as another limb stitched into an existing framework. Google hopped into the music game in late 2011 with Google Music (later, Google Play Music), the company’s answer to Apple’s iTunes music store, the twist being that you could also upload up to 20,000 of your own songs and stream all of that to multiple Android devices. The service never really took off, though, and no surprise: Given the choice between having to curate your own music library (where you’re paying for every song or album and limited by what you own and limited by where you can listen) and throwing a few bucks at something that works on nearly any device, giving you instant listening access to an unprecedented single-source spectrum of music, which would you pick?

For Google to offer its own flat-rate streaming service was thus inevitable, but before we dive in — I’ve been playing with GPMAA on my laptop – I want to point out that those who view Google as simply an imitator (Google+ after Facebook, Android after iOS) are hung up on irrelevant chronology. It’s not about who builds first — Blizzard’s online game World of Warcraft is brilliantly imitative and Apple’s first tablet arrived nearly a decade after Microsoft’s Tablet PC — it’s about who can build better while at the same time capturing the public’s imagination.

google-music-hands-on1_2040_large_verge_medium_landscape

It’s also, occasionally, about playing catchup — and that, unfortunately, is how you’ll probably feel coming to GPMAA if you’re familiar with other streaming music subscription services.

At first blush, GPMAA looks like a refined version of Google Play Music, the “My Library” views consolidated and new ones like “Radio” and “Explore” given primacy, while the playlist options are where they were before, at bottom-left. Instead of the older version’s blandly all-white background, GPMAA’s selection window now sports a soft gray undertone that’s less garish when viewed in low light while helping to accent the white rectangles that surround images like album art. For those with ultra-high-definition displays (I’m using a MacBook Pro Retina), everything’s much cleaner and crisper, say, than Spotify’s client, where app-native text looks as though it’s being viewed through an out-of-focus camera.

You can still search for music in a box up top, to the right of the Google Play logo, but instead of retrieving music with price tags, you’ll now find clusters of artists, albums and instantly playable songs. Click an artist and you’ll summon a page sporting a brief list of “top songs,” followed by a single-line carousel devoted to “albums” and another to “related artists.” Clicking a song prompts a player to appear at page bottom with conventional player features, including options to repeat or shuffle, adjust the volume and rate a track thumbs up or down.

Google hasn’t said precisely how much music lives in its revamped library — Spotify claims over 20 million songs in its catalog, but Google’s only reference to a number was the word “millions” tossed out during the unveiling [Update: Google lists "18+ million" on its "About" page; also, a prior version of this review criticized Google for a dearth of search results for major artists like Miles Davis and Bruce Springsteen as well as a few confusingly labeled albums -- the same searches now turn up dozens of albums for both artists, all properly labeled -- improvements to the service are apparently ongoing.]

Another feature I’m less than impressed with is Google’s relational matrix. To be fair, the “related” intelligence of every streaming service I’ve used veers drunkenly between competent and “Seriously?” GPMAA is no different: Drilling on “related artists” for Bruce Hornsby, for instance, turns up more era-related than historically interactive or style-related acts; surely an intelligent music search would know to surface Jerry Garcia or The Grateful Dead before Marc Cohn and Sting, or Ricky Skaggs and Bela Fleck before Shawn Colvin. Let’s hope Google’s much-vaunted semantic search engine technology isn’t the underlying factor here, because that’d just be embarrassing.

The “Radio” feature, which lets you create radio “stations” (based largely on the relationships mentioned above, for better or worse), works as you’ve come to expect radio features to since you first fiddled with Pandora years ago — with an interesting wrinkle: You can monitor what’s coming through a “Queue” view or re-initiate the radio mix and stream by clicking on it under the “Radio” view, which is unique, and possibly of interest if you want to curate your radio playlist (as opposed to not having to worry about it). That “Explore” feature, on the other hand, is more “been there, done that,” a view that simply makes recommendations, lets you browse new releases, discover new material sorting by genre or check out featured albums and playlists.

google-music

What about streaming quality? Lossless playback? A universal player? Family access plans? Music catalog certainty, i.e. artists and songs not inexplicably vanishing because a use contract ends or some deal falls through? Google’s settings make no mention of quality, so what you hear is what you get — almost surely compressed, though in what format and at what bit rate is anyone’s guess until Google makes this clear (as services like Spotify do), as it unarguably should. If you want a universal player, alas, you’re out of luck: GPMAA is for browsers and Android devices only, another sign that Google’s only half-heartedly invested in music as an actual service and not just a platform-building exercise. As for family access plans, Google’s not offering one at this time (to be fair, neither is Spotify, though users have been clamoring for one for years); whether it (or others) should or not gets into the economics of service sustainability and fair compensation to artists, which is something Google’s also saying nothing about. It’ll be interesting to hear from artists about GPMAA over time; they’ve certainly had few positive things to say about Spotify’s remuneration model.

What I dashed off yesterday serves as a summary here: Instead of boldly leading, GPMAA merely extends Google’s toe-in-the-water approach to music, adding incrementally interesting features instead of galvanic ones. Unless you care desperately about curating your radio streams, a service like Spotify comes off as decidedly superior here — by wide enough margins that, especially given Spotify’s platform agnosticism, I’m not sure it’s fair to call GPMAA an actual competitor.

It’s a shame, really. Google had — and still has — an opportunity to do something daring in this space, something that can and ought to exist like Google Search exists beyond a single platform like Android. I’m not sure what the holdup is: market jitters, problematic label deals, the economics of profitable music streaming, a simple lack of imagination. Whatever the case, GPMAA is at best thoroughly competent — a diffident “me too” service that comes up short in too many areas to recommend over existing, more thoroughly outfitted alternatives.

(VIA. Techland.Time)