#StudentPressFreedom Day: Issuu's toolkit for rising journalists 1/29/19

Issuu has published a new resource for up-and-coming student journalists to get informed of their rights for Student Press Freedom Day this Wednesday, Jan. 30.

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UF's 'Fresh Take Florida' to provide news coverage of state government 1/29/19

The University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications has announced the launch of Fresh Take Florida, an effort to provide coverage of Florida state government at a time when state capitals are increasingly under-covered.

Six student journalists, all graduating seniors, will be covering executive-branch agency operations as well as legislation throughout the 2019 legislative session. They will focus on covering topics of particular impact to the North Central Florida area and the University of Florida community, including higher education, healthcare and environmental protection.

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Putting captions in their place 1/15/19

By Ed Henninger

Good news design is the practice of understanding how readers read – then using that understanding to make your newspaper easier, faster and more comfortable for readers to follow.

Part of that calls for proper placement of captions.

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ProPublica picks 14 newsrooms and investigative projects for Year 2 of its Local Reporting Network 12/17/18

By ProPublica

ProPublica has named 14 newsrooms and local reporters who will participate in the second year of the ProPublica Local Reporting Network, a program aimed at supporting investigative journalism at local and regional news organizations. Seven of the projects will focus on state government, while the rest will cover a broad range of subjects.

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Turning your design around 12/11/18

By Ed Henninger

Sometimes a design just goes stale. Over the course of even just a few years, inconsistencies creep in, color use gets out of hand, odd typefaces appear. Stuff happens.

But you can turn that around. You can bring a crisp, clean, compelling look to the tired face of your newspaper.

Here are ten steps to guide you.

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If you fail to plan ... 11/13/18

By Ed Henninger

Those who have read this column over the years have probably seen this quote before:

"If you fail to plan ... you plan to fail."

I believe that so deeply that it has become embedded in my DNA.

But I'm preaching to the choir. You already have plans.

You have a business plan. An advertising plan. A circulation plan. A production plan. A personnel plan. A growth plan.

But (with rare exception), no design plan.

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Audience engagement could be key to a more satisfied newsroom: 4 takeaways to consider 9/18/18

By Matt Dulin, Community Impact Newspaper

A recent survey of more than 100 journalists shows that journalists are more satisfied and find their work more meaningful and significant when they practice audience engagement as part of their job. Unlike other tasks that have been piled onto journalists that might contribute to burnout, audience engagement has the ability to actually rekindle the flames that keep journalists going.

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Tread carefully when requiring down payment for democracy 9/18/18

By Jim Pumarlo

My hometown newspaper instituted a new policy requiring that readers "pay" for the First Amendment right to express, and explain why, who or what they support or oppose at the voting booth.

The newspaper is sadly is not the first and won't be the last to begin charging readers for election endorsement letters. As a former editor, I appreciate the arguments presented for enacting the policy. It's still disappointing, and I respectfully disagree.

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Who's your friend? 9/10/18

By Ed Henninger

I'm a friendly guy. Most people who know me genuinely like me ... and I like them.

I can be a strong friend. I can stand by you when you need me to. I can help you when you've got a problem. I can just be there by your side when you need support.

But ... I can also choose to not be your friend if I think it matters.

So, let me get this out there briefly and clearly: I am not a friend of writers ... or designers.

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The power of the podcast 8/21/18

By Jane Nicholes, SNPA Correspondent

When 5-year-old Noah Thomas disappeared in rural Pulaski County, Va., in 2015, a massive search ensued, accompanied by intensive news coverage. Four days later the body of the child was found in a septic tank with an unsecured lid, 10 feet away from the basketball hoop outside his home.

The boy's mother, Ashley White, said she was taking a nap and Noah was gone when she woke up. The home situation was less than ideal, and instead of community sympathy for her loss, White was the object of a backlash of condemnation fueled by gossip, rumor and social media.

"She didn't grow up with a silver spoon in her mouth," said Lee Wolverton, managing editor of The Roanoke Times. "She struggled like a lot of people in that area have. People are pretty quick to judge people like her."

By the time she was convicted of child abuse leading to an injury as well as two lesser charges of neglect, White had been in jail for more than a year. Released on time served, she appealed the main conviction. It was overturned by an appeals court and the Virginia Supreme Court allowed that ruling to stand.

This spring The Roanoke Times released a multi-part podcast, simply called "Septic," that told the story with a focus on the mother. Much of it is audio based in large part on courtroom recordings that were released to the newspaper. It also includes recorded interviews, photos, documents and some video.

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