Summer is undoubtedly the season of weddings. It seems as though every time I turn around, someone I know is getting engaged or planning their wedding. If you are among these lucky ladies and gentlemen, I'm sure I don't need to emphasize the importance of easing stress and making wedding planning and your big day less complicated. I've found some ways that technology can make your dream wedding easier to achieve and long lasting in cyberspace.
Although the wedding photographer will have some great shots, it is great to see the photos your friends and relatives captured. Create a hashtag (example JenandRickWedding2014) and put them on cards. Pass them out to guests so they know to hashtag their wedding photos. After your big day is over, you can type in the hashtag on twitter or instagram, or other social media you use and view the photos all together in one place!
Creating a website for your wedding using free software can be a way to reach your guests with ease. You can even invite your guests on your phone without mailing a single invite. Although you may want to send out paper invitations, mobile apps such as YAPP (www.yapp.us) can allow you to stay more connected. You can create a guest list, make a digital invitation and share with friends, share the event on social media, and add your own photos. Your guests can even use the app to get driving directions to your ceremony.
Wedding planning apps such as Wedding Wire allow you to access every aspect of planning at one place. You can view your budget, keep track of guests, create inspiration boards, view your vendors and even keep an organized checklist. Wedding planning apps can help you stay organized and make sure you are on track.
If you have friends or family who cannot attend your wedding, one way to make them feel like they are a part of your big day is to create a live stream of your wedding. They can watch you say “I do’s” from wherever they are. There are many websites out there that you can use to create a live stream.
Editing my peers' work in my Journalism III class has presented some challenges. Many of the stories were unfinished, while others ran too long. Some of the stories did not have artwork, or had a photo that was out of focus and difficult to edit. It is difficult editing someone else's work without them being present because in a lot of circumstances because some things were unclear and I had to figure out a solution.
In writing their next piece, I would recommend keeping the syntax short and to the point. I would also recommend using action verbs and avoid using clichés, which I had to eliminate a few times. Since there were three different kinds of articles -- a scholarly article, opinion piece, or first person narrative -- I think it was more difficult to write for a similar audience. I would recommend also including their own art work or photos to stand for the piece they are writing.
Trimming down the stories to make sure they fit onto one page is very difficult. A lot of the stories are very well written and interesting in their entirety. It's hard eliminating something from a story that the author worked hard to come up with. A frustration I've had is trying to keep the stories overall point without eliminating the most important parts and keeping the author's voice.
In the photo/art area, I would recommend students to work on getting a good photo to illustrate their story. A photo of a source, a photo of a phenomena the story is about or a creative photo/illustration would be best for a story.
When there is no photo available, it requires the editor to either find a photo, find a photographer to take a photo or let the story run without any artwork. Without artwork to pull a reader in, their story has less of a chance of getting read. When there is a photo available but it isn't credited to anyone, editors get even more frustrated. Either the editor must get in contact with the writer or eliminate the photo. If the photo is not an original and has photo credit, it still isn't ideal because the source has to be cited. The best available option would be to have a visually appealing, edited photo to give to an editor. However, I think editing photos is some of the fun work that editors get to do and wouldn't mind doing it myself.
Working as an editor allows a lot of room for creativity. It is a challenge, almost like a puzzle that needs solved but there is no specific, right answer. It is fun working with somebody else's story and slightly enhancing it. Seeing a bunch of stories and photos turn into to a finished magazine through the editors working with layout and design is a cool thing.
Headlines are especially challenging because there is such a limited amount of space to sum up an article and get the readers' attention. Editing photos is also difficult because once again, I don't want to be altering someone's work too much. Another challenge was organizing the stories and deciding what goes where. Finally, trimming down a story is the hardest part. It is difficult spotting every error especially with a limited amount of time. If there was more time, I think it would be interesting to really get creative with the layout and jumping stories and getting some different artwork. On the other hand, there never seems to be enough time in this field because there are always deadlines to meet. It is challenging to work quickly and precisely but rewarding to see the finished product.
Tony Norman's article, "Some prefer civic wrongs to civil rights" is overall well written and uses good quotes, such as those from Ms. Buchanan. He supports his opinion of overall equality by tying it together with what was going on in Arizona. After quoting news hosts and conservatives who are intolerant to homosexuals, he relates this ongoing battle with the battle for civil rights in the 1950's. I would say that was a great point to make supporting his argument. He uses these quotes, along with the following quotes from Buchanan, to emphasize his point of why civil rights laws are in tact and the whole idea of allowing discrimination is absurd. If I was his editor, I would ask him to go more in depth on the subject and dig deeper into the paradox that is being argued about. Overall, this piece was well written by Norman because rather than just stating his opinion up front, he discusses the other side's argument and disproves it. He feels strongly about the matter and it is shown through his writing. Some may find Norman aggressive with his writing, but he is nonetheless a great journalist writing about important matters.
AP style seems to be an editor's nightmare. Knowing when to capitalize titles, which ones to abbreviate and when to spell out street or state names can be a challenge. Most of what we have learned in English composition classes does not apply with AP style. For example, if you are spelling out numbers, you must be consistent and spell out all other numbers, right? You would be wrong. Numbers one through ten are spelled out and any numbers higher are written numerically. To make matters more complicated, ages are never spelled out and some other weird circumstances contradict those rules. This would be enough to drive your English literature and grammar professors insane.
I feel as though writing should be more of an expressive art form and less of a tedious task with many rules for each different style. However, English is versatile and there are many different ways to write that are more correct than others. When writing in AP style, the best thing is to not trust your instinct and look up everything that is in question until you are positive it is correct.
A good editor must also be a good writer. Editors have necessary grammar skills and a broad grasp of language itself. They have to be good working with people, but also have a backbone to critique others' work.
Editors constantly read stories; newspaper articles, blog articles, books, and literary journals. They also keep their AP style books close to them at all times.
Good editors make sure to avoid legal trouble at all costs by verifying sources and fact checking. They know that it is better to leave part of a story out if it cannot be fixed. Editors, along with all journalists, must follow ethical and legal guidelines when working with stories.
Editors can work well under pressure and time deadlines. They are essentially leaders, helping journalists work through their stories. Formatting, layout and design, and photos are all things editors work with to bring a story to life. If they are editing for a magazine or newspaper, they must make sure the story meets length requirements, makes sense, all while not altering the journalists work completely. For online publications, editors must have great pictures that jump out at the reader and make sure the facts are chunked together in a way that keep the readers' interest.
Editing sounds like hard work, but good editors take the time to work through stories and get them right every single time. They are analytical and detail oriented, but also work well with time constraints.
In this course, I have learned that police reporting can be daunting. Getting in contact with police officers to cover a story can be difficult, but I've learned that most officers are friendly and cooperative with reporters. I must dig a little deeper when covering a police beat and be careful not to write about things that are unclear.
I believe that covering meetings was a lot easier than police story. It is easy to simply show up to a school board meeting or city council meeting and listen closely at what is being said. It is important to carry a recorder because it can be hard to hear and not everything is clear or makes sense. Covering meetings was fun because you get to know issues that are being raised in your community or surrounding communities. When covering meetings, I learned that I should show up early with a notebook and pencil and ask questions about any unclear material at the end. It is important, if you are normally covering this beat, to be friendly with the school board or council.
Covering courts is similar to meetings because there is a lot of language that is unclear and things you do not know about. There will be a lot of information to ask the judge or district attorney because there will be things you need cleared up. When covering courts, it is beneficial to get colorful quotes, if possible, to give the story life. It is important in court stories, along with police stories, to remember suspects are innocent until proven guilty. It would be distasteful and wrong to say that a man stole a million dollars if he did not have a trial. Court reporting has taught me to listen closely and ask questions.
Overall, reporting is more than choosing what stories you want to write about because they are easy. It is challenging and not always comfortable situations. When reporting, it is important to be persistent and accurate. AP style will never be 100% engrained in my brain and I will have to look up rules when writing. Writing for web is a lot faster to hit the audience than traditional newspaper reporting and good journalists are involved with social networking. They tweet to get their stories to their audience and post stories to blogs, updating faster than a newspaper can post the original story. After this course, I would like to do a little bit of reporting using social networks and a blog.
Future reporting students and journalism students should understand interviewing and listening carefully are what make a good story. Your story speaks through sources and good interviewing. A journalism story is never handed to you and takes work to be good. The AP stylebook will be your best friend. Practice makes perfect, so don't pass up an opportunity. In the end, journalism is fun because you get to speak to people you never thought you'd meet and write about things you didn't know about.
My first court reporting experience began on Monday Nov. 4 at Magisterial District Court 27-3-03 in Brownsville, PA. The court of common pleas was nothing I would have expected. It was a low-key environment with little gavel action and a lot of conversation between the District Attorney and Judge. The cases we heard mainly consisted of minor drug charges, most which were waived or dropped, minor disputes, and theft. Many police officers did not show up to trial. Overall, it was an interesting experience and I learned a lot about how the court system works.