• Media Picks #2

    Media Hack Media Picks Media Picks #2
    Media Picks #2

    Media Picks

    Media Picks #2

    Posted By Alastair Otter

    Missed Media Picks #1? Check out the archives.

    Podcasting is apparently back and there are dozens of excellent podcasts you ought to be listening to (this american life, serial, startup, radiolab, all songs consideredtwit) but now we have an excellent new home-grown podcast in Jonathan Ancer’s Extraordinary Lives. Check out the episodes on Thuli Madonsela and Arthur Chaskalson for starters.


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    From silos to aggregators

    Publishers thought mobile devices might let them retake control of the distribution channel. But they haven’t had as much success as they’d hoped for driving users to their single-source apps. As the initial thrill of iPad apps wears off many are now doing revenue share deals with aggregators like Flipboard and News360. In part this is because the appetite for standalone news apps is waning – readers want news from a range of sources – and in part because they are news organisations, not tech companies. Rather leave the heavy tech to the specialists.


    Someone else saying that news organisations should focus on news rather than building out technology portfolios is Guardian CEO Andrew Miller:

    Guardian CEO: “The idea we will survive by becoming a technology company is garbage”

    “Why do so many of these technology businesses want to become media companies? We are a media company, we are about breaking news and strong stories and holding people to account and the idea that we will survive by becoming a technology company is garbage.”


    Which is not to say the Guardian doesn’t invest heavily in technology, it does, but mostly to make its journalists more informed and efficient.

    Behind the scenes with the Guardian’s analytics tool

    Ophan is the Guardian’s in-house analytics system and Chris Moran gives a fascinating tour of the scope of this homegrown tool and the motivation behind it. “We don’t know enough about the internet as a publishing medium. We know everything about print, pretty much, there’s not many tricks left in the bag, we’ve done it for 200 years and we’re used to it. But the internet’s changing all the time, as much as anything else.”


    And then there are those going it alone and (some are) living the dream:

    Those bloggers earn how much?

    A group of bloggers open up about the money they earn from blogging. In some cases it’s jaw-droppingly impressive. Who said it’s not possible to be a one person media company?

    Someone else building a mini media empire is Ben Thompson who is proving Kevin Kelly’s maxim that it’s possible to make a decent living with just 1000 fans.


    Technology trends journalists should watch in 2015

    When it comes to predicting the future of news Amy Webb is always worth a listen. Her company just released an annual report looking at trends for 2015. This is a great summary of the highlights. If that’s not enough the full report can be found here.


    Surviving media evolution

    This is what happens when you get some of the smartest media people onto a stage together. It’s a little stream of consciousness like but still some good insights from the likes of Ben Hu and Frédéric Filloux.


    The toolbox


    Seeing dozens of things on the internet you want to read but you don’t have time right now? Save it to Pocket and catch up later. Pocket strips the cruft from articles and gives you just the text. It’s also an easy way to collect and organise articles. We use it in our news-gathering process as a way to store articles for review and possible later use.


    Site of the week


    Import.io just gets easier and easier to use. If you need to scrape data from a website then magin.import.io is a good starting point. And if you’re new to scraping then check out this piece for a good introduction to magic.import.io:

    Web scraping in under 60 seconds: the magic of import.io


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    Written by Alastair Otter

    Data visualisation & design, journalist, hacker.


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