Elections 2014: the democratic disconnect in SA

GRAEME ADDISON reflects on the gap between the demands of protestors and the choices made by voters. Media are torn between reporting the upsurge of violence – and perhaps advancing non-democratic causes – while struggling to maintain trust in the legitimacy of a state badly corrupted under current leadership.

In different parts of the world people are taking to the streets aiming to bring down their governments. Today in Ukraine the elected president has effectively been removed. In Thailand and Venezuela crowds rally around symbols of resistance, shaking governments to their foundations.

In Egypt President Morsi was ousted barely a year after being elected by popular vote; and that was after Mubarak had been forced out of office by mass demonstrations. In Syria the protests turned into a deadly Continue reading

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Radio: at the heart of social media

Radio is perfectly positioned to be the ringmaster of social media exchanges within and even well beyond its broadcast footprint area. GRAEME ADDISON offers a bit of theory to back this up.

Radio is limited by being only an audio medium – right? Sure, it’s a ‘theatre of the mind’ but how far does that get you when all trends in journalism and entertainment point to radio digital commonsvisual media? Radio is instant and soon forgotten, right? It can’t sustain attention and pursue investigative details and data? Dead wrong!

Radio connects many dots. Because of its directness, openness and agility, it can position itself at the heart of social media. It can grab the attention of listeners (rather call them users) and send them to in-depth content via its web pages. With digital radio now on the cards almost everywhere, the transmedia power of radio will take a great leap forward.

And radio is not just sound. Using websites and its own social media channels radio can Continue reading

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Maps that raise questions

Quite a lot of new instructional material is appearing online about techniques of data journalism. If journalists are being outwitted by government and corporate number-crunchers it’s because we haven’t stayed on track with digital analytical skills. Most of us are aware of this but not sure how to go about learning them.

Here’s the link to a very good, short (48 page), free PDF that touches all the bases, from how to use Excel to how to visualise the data you’ve unpacked and hand it to readers in a digestible form. http://www.tcij.org/sites/default/files/u4/Data%20Journalism%20Book.pdf
DATA JOURNALISM, by Elena Egawhary and Cynthia O’Murchu (Centre for Investigative Journalism and Financial Times).

Also new is Paul Bradshaw’s “Scraping Continue reading

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