Week 4 – 2. Inquiry: Review the two pieces

Review the following two pieces and respond to the questions on your blog.

a. What do you think could be the main issues with this poorly written entertainment news story?

‘Robert Pattinson talks about his new film, The Rover, with Dave O’Neil’ by Dave O’Neil, for The Sydney Morning Herald

Firstly, I honestly think that this may have been the worst article featured on a major newspaper website that I have ever read. O’Neil was obviously aiming for witty and interesting, but unfortunately for him, he missed completely and instead fell into boring and cringe-worthy. The headline ‘Robert Pattinson talks about his new film, The Rover, with Dave O’Neil’ suggests an interview, however the content of the article includes a lot of illogical and unnecessary descriptions and observations of the location and to bodyguard accompanying ‘RPatz’ – as he so annoyingly refers to him. The article completely ignores the idea of providing the essential details and relevant information in clear and succinct paragraphs (Ames, 2015).

The other main problem is that the article is far too self-focused. Robert Pattinson barely gets a word in for this so-called interview. In Eve Fairbanks’ interview with AJR, she says that first-person journalling can be a very easy way to lose the interest of the reader, and forget to include the average person’s view (Levy, 2014). O’Neil’s problem is that he tried too hard to make himself the focus or the article which goes against the rule that Ames (2015) states, that a journalist’s job is to be objective, and to not allow themselves to become the news.

Overall, I think the first-person approach to this article, the lack of an actual interview, and no real facts are the main issues that lead to this being such a poorly written article.

b. What do you think is good about this well-written media release?

‘Drought worst in living memory: AgForce survey’ by AgForce

There are many things that work in this article, but I think the main point is that the writer uses short sentences and paragraphs, which sticks to the general rule of one idea to a sentence, and one sentence to a paragraph (Ames, 2015).

There is also the use of well researched facts which as Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith (2012) suggest, provides credibility for the newspaper or company backing the article. The five Ws and H are clearly introduced and continually discussed throughout the article.

Unlike O’Neil’s article, there is no first-person journalling, and opinion is kept out of the story all together.

Overall, it is a very strong article, and I would not be able to suggest any changes that would improve its quality.

Reference List 

Berkman, A 2015, ‘Drought worst in living memory: AgForce survey’ AgForce, 20 May 2015, viewed 7 August 2015, http://www.agforceqld.org.au/index.php?tgtPage=news&id=view,478

Ames, K 2015, Week 4 – Writing news, course notes, COMM11007 Media Writing, CQUniversity e-courses, http://moodle.cqu.edu.au/

Levy, Dustin, 2014, ‘Vice, and the Trend of First-Person Journalism’ Accessed 7 August 2015, http://ajr.org/2014/12/01/vice-trend-first-person-journalism/

O’Neil, D 2014, ‘Robert Pattinson talks about his new film, The Rover, with Dave O’Neil’ The Sydney Morning Herald, June 16 2014, viewed 7 August 2015, http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/robert-pattinson-talks-about-his-new-film-the-rover-with-dave-oneil-20140619-zs99j.html

Whitaker, W. Richard, Janet E. Ramsey and Ronald D. Smith 2012, Media Writing: Print, Broadcast, and Public Relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.


Week 4 – 1. Practical: Practical: Plan your Stories and Prepare for Assessment 3

a. Identify two possible events that you could cover for Assessment 3.

The two possible events that I could cover are the Bundaberg Multicultural Festival (30th August, 9am-4pm) and the Bundy Flavours Festival (13th September, 9am-3pm). I think that I shall attend both of these events and cover both, and then choose which one I was able to collect the best content for. These are their websites:

Bundaberg Multicultural Festival

Bundy Flavours Festival

b. Plan how you will cover each event. Do some research and write a background paragraph on these events. 

The Bundaberg Multicultural Festival first began in 1992 and has been expanding ever since. It is a combination of hundreds of stalls selling both handmade goods and foods from varying cultures, and performances from many different cultural groups. Because of the wide range of activities and performances available, I believe that I should have no trouble at all collecting an ample amount of information and media to tweet about and then curate on my Storify account.

The Bundy Flavours Festival is now onto its third year of celebrating fresh produce and supporting local companies. A week long schedule of cooking classes leads up to the one day festival held in Alexandra Park, which will be hosted by celebrity chefs Matt Golinski and Alastair McLeod, and gardener Annette McFarlane. An interview or at least quote from one of these figures would be beneficial to include. The festival also has its own hashtag which will allow me to view media from other attendees.

c. Review whether you need to get accredited for either event (if so, start the process), because some events restrict cameras. It’s usually not hard to get accredited, so we encourage you to do so if needed.

No accreditation is required for either event.

d. Identify the main parts of the event (eg. Speech/launch/game/presentation).

The main part of the Bundaberg Multicultural festival are the performances which generally take place up on the main stage.

Whilst the program for the Bundy Flavours Festival has not yet been released, I believe that the main even will involve the celebrity chefs cooking, or the final of the cooking competition.

e. Identify the people you will try to get a short quote and photo from/of to record on Twitter (eg. one family, one organizer, one participant).

At the Bundaberg Multicultural Festival I would like to get a quote from at least 1 organiser, 2 performers, 2 stallholders and 2 families so that I have plenty to cover.

At the Bundy Flavours Festival I would like to get a quote from 2 organisers, 1 celebrity chef (if possible), 2 stallholders and 2 families.

f. Watch the ‘Why you should plan’ short video on the course website. On your blog, list the three main points from Kate as to why planning is important.

Time flies so planning ahead is super important.

  1. Main events: You should identify the main events ahead of time so that you do not miss covering the parts that would be most valuable to include in your story.
  2.  Schedules: You should obtain a schedule as early as possible before the event so that you can plan out your time spent attending and also, if needed, choose the more important or content rich events to attend if two or more are on at the one time.
  3. Accreditation: Check whether you need formal accreditation to attend the event as someone working in the media! Otherwise, you may not be able to take your camera in and gather all of the media that you need to create a successful story. Even if it is a small, local event, you should still notify at least one organiser so that there is no confusion on the day as to who you are and what you are doing.

g. You should provide a summary of your planning on your blog

Bundaberg Multicultural Festival:

  • Sunday 30th August, 9am-4pm
  • Will attend during middle hours from 11am-2pm (this will be subject to change if the program is released)
  • Will contact Multicultural Festival Organisers to gain informal accreditation and organise to interview an organiser
    (Rotary Club of Bundaberg Sunrise
    PO Box 2485
    Bundaberg QLD 4670)
  • Aiming to interview 1 organiser, 2 performers, 2 stallholders and 2 families

Bundy Flavours Festival:

  • Sunday 13th September, 9am-3pm
  • Will attend during middle hours from 11am-2pm (this will be subject to change once the program is released)
  • Will contact organisers on 1300 883 699 or events.admin@bundaberg.qld.gov.au to gain informal accreditation and see if there is anyway to have a quick interview with celebrity chefs and/or organisers
  • Aiming to interview 2 organisers, 1 celebrity chef (if possible), 2 stallholders and 2 families.

Week 3 – 3. Technical: Complete Quiz 3

Did you find the questions difficult? Did you have any problems in specific areas?

I found this week’s quiz extremely easy, and I was able to achieve 100% on my first attempt. Grammar was always one of my strengths in highschool, and I think that although though I may not know the specific rules, I am always able to think through a sentence carefully and identify what is wrong with it.

Week 3 – 2. Inquiry: Review an event or issue

Review an event or issue of interest to you that has been published in different media – one broadcast, one online, and one print.

Consider the lead paragraph in each story. Are they different? If so, how? Is there a difference in news values? If so, which news values are prevalent in which story? Why does the story interest you?

The issue that I have decided to discuss is that of Tony Burke’s usage of political travel entitlements, and I have decided to use a newspaper article, a video clip of a news report, and an online article.


1. ‘Come fly with me: Burke’s world tour with the staffer who became his partner’

Lead: Italy and Spain were the favoured destinations of Tony Burke when he embarked on a ministerial travel extravaganza that included first-class flights, with senior staffer Skye Larris, who is now his partner.


2. ‘Tony Burke under fire over family trip’ 

Lead: He led the attack on Bronwyn Bishop’s spending habits, but Tony Burke now admits he’s no saint.


3. ‘Tony Burke to repay $90 but stands by $12,000 family trip to Uluru’

Lead: Labor frontbencher Tony Burke says his family’s $12,000 business class trip to Uluru was “beyond community expectations” but is standing by the claim, although he will repay $90 in travel expenses he claimed to attend a Robbie Williams concert. 

The three leads are all rather different in my opinion, and this is due to the fact that all three of these types of media all put different news values as their priority.

In the first story, which was a print copy of a newspaper article, it can be seen that proximity, impact and prominence are some of the news values prevalent, which aligns with what Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith suggest (2012, p.21). As the Australian is one of the main national newspapers, the proximity has been achieved as the story involves an Australian Prime Minister. The prominence news value is also prevalent as Tony Burke is well known due to his status as a Labor MP and Shadow Minister for Finance (Burke, 2015). The lead is rather long and uses highly descriptive language, as timeliness is not considered of high importance in print media. The language is used to build suspense about what exactly Burke had done wrong, and the reader expects the author to go into detail about the issue, as a print journalist’s responsibility is to act as a government ‘watchdog’ (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith, 2012, pp. 21-22).

The second story was a broadcast of a news story on 7 News. This media highly values timeliness, human interest and conflict (Whitaker, Ramsey & Smith, 2012, p. 21). Timeliness is reflected in the fact that the lead is so short and dramatic, to grab the viewer’s attention to continue watching for more information. The human interest is used as referring to Burke as ‘no saint’ makes the viewer begin to experience negative emotions toward him and his actions. Conflict is also used strongly through the mention of Bronwyn Bishop and how Burke ‘led the attack’ on her spending habits.

When it comes to online articles, Schaudt and Carpenter (2009) suggest that the greater the number of news values present in a story, the more likely that a reader is going to stay and continue reading. Timeliness is present, as the author tried to quickly include the most important facts and figures about the story in as short of a lead as possible. Prominence is also evident with the mention of Burke as well as Robbie williams. The story also relies slightly on proximity to the country of Australia as a whole, with the mention of Uluru, which has significance to Australian citizens.

I think that the reason why this topic interests me is because of the ‘human interest’ news value. It really makes me feel angry and annoyed at politicians who use hardworking taxpayer’s money for their own leisure or for things outside of what their entitlements are meant to include.

Reference List

Bourke, L 2015, ‘Tony Burke to repay $90 but stands by $12,000 family trip to Uluru’ The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 August, viewed 7 August 2015,


Burke, Tony, 2015, ‘Tony Burke’ Accessed August 7, 2015. http://www.tonyburke.com.au/

Cleary, P & Higgins, E 2015, ‘Come fly with me: Burke’s world tour with the staffer who became his partner’, The Australian, 7 August, p. 1.

Schaudt, S & Carpenter, S 2009, ‘The News That’s Fit to Click: An Analysis of Online News Values and Preferences Present in the Most-viewedStories on azcentral.com’ Southwestern Mass Communication Journal, 2009, vol. 24, no. 2, p. 17, viewed 7 August 2015, http://www.academia.edu/204998/The_news_that_s_fit_to_click_An_analysis_of_online_news_values_and_preferences_present_in_the_most-viewed_stories_on_azcentral.com

Whitaker, W. Richard, Janet E. Ramsey and Ronald D. Smith 2012, Media Writing: Print, Broadcast, and Public Relations, 4th edn, Routledge, New York.

7News, 2015. “Tony Burke under fire over family trip” 7News broadcast video, posted August 7, 2015. https://au.news.yahoo.com/video/watch/29202870/tony-burke-under-fire-over-family-trip/#page1

Week 3 – 1. Practical: Register a Storify Account

a. Register a Storify account:

My new Storify account is DanaBishop_.

b. Spend time reviewing other Storify accounts.

CNN Politics is a highly regarded Storify account, as it is run by CNN. Their most recent story ‘Obama tweets at members of Congress over Iran Deal‘ compiles a list of tweets about Obama’s new Iran deal. I was interested to find that there was a lot of tweets, but not a huge amount of  the author’s own writing to link the tweets, which is what I thought was the point of Storify.

ABC News is another prominent account as it is one of the main Australian News Broadcasting Networks. Their story on ‘Australia’s sporting stars, fans stand with Adam Goodes‘ included a bit more of their own writing to link all of the different pieces of media, and was well curated in my opinion.

c. Identify an issue to follow and compile your first story. It doesn’t need to be huge – just a few tweets.

The issue that I decided to compile my first story on was that of the breaking news about the linkage of the discovered debris on Reunion Island to the missing plane from flight MH370. My story can be found here: ‘Breakthrough in MH370 investigation‘.

d. Reflect on your experience on your blog. What seems to ‘make the news’ on Storify? Can you see the usefulness of this as a way to tell stories? If so, how? If not, why not?

Firstly, I thought I would conduct a bit of research into what Storify really is. They describe themselves as ‘Storify lets you curate social networks to build social stories, bringing together media scattered across the Web into a coherent narrative. We are building the story layer above social networks, to amplify the voices that matter and create a new media format that is interactive, dynamic and social’ (Storify, 2012).

However, as Rorabaugh and Stommel (2012) suggest, Storify is actually about organising already existing content from various social media networks, and therefore a layer ‘beneath’ the social networks.

From my browsing, I found there to be quite a vast array of things mentioned as ‘news’ on Storify, from the hard news of war and politics, to the soft news of weather and celebrity activity.

I can fully see the usefulness of this tool to tell stories if it is used in the intended manner.

Baer (2015) lists 5 important things that need to be considered if content curation is to be successful:

1. Identify Your Audience

2. Focus Your Content Sharing

3. Curate Content That is of Impeccable Quality

4. Curate Consistently

5. Brand Yourself, not Your Company

Detailed descriptions of these can be found in the article here.

I think that just compiling a long list of tweets without adding original commentary to link them is pointless as a viewer may just as well log onto Twitter and search a particular hashtag and still receive the same information. It is a very valuable way to express how one believes different parts of a story or issue may link up or provide background information on eachother.

For a journalist, Storify is invaluable, as it can allow them to support their tweets and articles with other reliable sources. From a business standpoint, Cisnero (2014) suggests that ‘content curation’ is highly valuable as a way to maintain an online presence and filter what their audience sees.

Either way, it is a highly valuable tool, and content curation is an essential skill for all journalists to learn.

Reference List

Baer, Jay. 2015. “Content Curation – 5 Ways to Succeed…Eventually” Accessed 6 August, 2015. http://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/content-curation-5-ways-to-succeed-eventually/

Cisnero, Kristina. 2014. “A Beginner’s Guide to Content Curation” Accessed 6 August, 2015. http://blog.hootsuite.com/beginners-guide-to-content-curation/

Rorabaugh, Pete and Jesse Strommel. 2012. “How to Storify. Why to Storify.” Accessed 6 August, 2015. http://www.hybridpedagogy.com/journal/how-to-storify-why-to-storify/

Storify, 2012, “Let’s learn to Storify!” Accessed 6 August, 2015. https://storify.com/madelinep/let-s-learn-to-storify