Month: May 2014

Is tragedy becoming the new beat?

It’s difficult to accept, but we live in an era of senseless violence. Horrific events such as the Sandy Hook and Virginia Tech massacres, the Aurora movie theatre shooting, the Boston Marathon bombing and, most recently, the mass shooting that killed 6 and injured even more in Isla Vista, Calif., are begging to bring to the forefront arguments involving gun control, mental illness and a slew of other issues. Journalists have always covered wars and mass deaths, but as of late, tragedy is being redefined. Tragedies have become less about where the violence occurred and in what context and more about what we can do—as progressive people—to stop this violence from happening. Massacres are becoming far too commonplace. When is enough, enough? Unfortunately, there are many who believe that these mass killings are indirect works of the media. People like this Thought Catalog blogger believe killers strive for attention and journalists give them the stage upon which to become a star. This is a cry from sects of the American public for journalists to remember their ethical standards in a time of tragedy. Journalists should continue …

A list of good journalism

Just like sports players have their ‘fantasy league’ teams, writers deserve their own list of industry MVPs. Sure, there are Pulitzer winners each year but some of the best work by the average Joes and Janes of journalism often goes unnoticed. The other day I stumbled upon an article: “Slightly more than 100 pieces of good journalism” by The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf. In the short introduction, I learn that Friedersdorf sends out a bi-weekly email containing great journalism recommendations for readers. (Sign up here). Then, each year, he compiles the pieces he’s highlighted into a “Best of Journalism Awards” list. This list has become my manifesto for good journalism. What I like most about Friedersdorf’s list is that he doesn’t interject his opinion. He provides a publication, article title, author and a short excerpt—leaving further exploration and judgement up to readers. The cool thing: No. 1 on the 2013 list? Center of the Universe, the piece published in Orange Coast Magazine that I recently blogged about. A small reassurance that I, too, have an eye for good journalism. It’s resources like this list of worthy journalism …

How to be an intrepid journalist

My reporting professor calls us intrepid journalists. An intrepid journalist is someone who is brave in their reporting and writing. An intrepid journalist is audacious enough to get that interview, to have that conversation, to write that story. An intrepid journalist is courageous and dauntless. As an aspiring journalist, I’m always admiring journalists who are exceptionally intrepid in their pursuits. I like to think there are even a few different ways to be an intrepid journalist: exposing oneself to danger or discomfort to capture a story that must be told telling a controversial story that must be told sharing personal details to recognize universal truths Each of these types have one common denominator: telling a story. Recently I was scanning Twitter and a tweet by Orange Coast Magazine led me to an incredible story. Click to find out why this story is STILL getting read all over the world: http://t.co/jotgtsMNUL Seduction and a serial killer… — Orange Coast (@OrangeCoastmag) May 12, 2014 The feature piece, Center of the Universe, was published last September and written by Jay Roberts. After reading it, I learned why it’s …