Through the posting of frequent news update articles (at least five throughout the course of the exercise) on the student’s blog and the completion of at least one summary news article relating the major events of the exercise (which will also be posted to the student’s blog within +/- five minutes of the end of the exercise) students will demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of journalistic skills, including appropriate use of inverted pyramid style, narrative voice, news judgment, ethics, interviewing, synthesis, and clarity.
- One week before the exercise: Prepare a simple blog that can be quickly and easily updated. A tutorial for building a blog on Blogger can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnploFsS_tY
- Three days before the exercise: Submit your blog’s url to your instructor.
- At the designated starting time, log onto the exercise homepage at: http://breakingnewsexercise.blogspot.com
- Check back in at the exercise homepage frequently. Throughout the exercise, you will receive a stream of updates, tips, suggestions and reports on a breaking news event happening in your community. It is your job to respond to these events with timely and appropriate news articles, published to your blog, using what you’ve learned in your journalism class to guide your decisions.
- If you want information that is not provided to you on the exercise homepage, you may contact a “shadow player” by sending an e-mail to an address designated by your instructor.
- An example of a shadow player might be the town mayor or a victim’s family member.
- The e-mail should state clearly the title/position/relationship of the person (i.e. “I would like to speak to the mayor”) who you wish to contact and ask no more than three very specific questions.
- Your instructor, playing the role of the person with whom you wish to speak, can choose to respond to the request in an e-mail, ignore the request completely, or contact you to set up a phone conversation, in which you will be able to exercise your live interview skills.
- You will receive a designated number of shadow player requests. Use these requests wisely.