Preparing Students for a Career in Digital Media

PGCC and PGCPS Host the 5th Annual Student Media Day

On November 16 and 17, Prince George’s Community College (PGCC) partnered with Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) to host the 5th annual Student Media Day. More than 150 high school and middle school students convened on PGCC’s main campus in Largo, Maryland for the two-day event.

The event is designed to help encourage students interests in pursuing careers in mass communications. My workshop allowed students to see how they could make a career out of social and digital media and maximize the social following they have already developed.

Students also had the opportunity to anchor a live news show produced by PGCC mass communication students, get first-hand experience with the latest in digital video technology, and interact with local media professionals.

It was an exciting day for the students as well as PGCC and PGCPS faculty and staff.

“I enjoyed seeing students actively engaging in the workshops, learning about the magic of digital video technology, interacting with local media professionals and having fun participating in our live newscast in front of the camera as anchors and reporters and behind the scenes as part of our production crew,” said Angela Mathis, senior producer and adjunct faculty, Prince George’s Community College.

Beyond the workshops, Student Media Day provides “an opportunity for students who are taking video production classes in the public schools to visit PGCC’s campus, explore their interests, and learn from professionals working in their field.”

Click here to view more photos from this year’s Student Media Day.

A Modest Proposal for the Future of Online Magazines

Can a daily online-only magazine featuring quality writing and journalism survive without losing money?

Amplify’d from gawker.com

A Modest Proposal for the Future of Online MagazinesFor well over a decade, Salon.com has tried to solve the puzzle of how to put out a daily online-only magazine featuring quality writing and journalism without losing money. They’ve failed. We have just one decent idea for their survival.

Daily journalism—even Salon’s version, with a handful of superstar writers, a small stable of workhorses, and a bunch of freelancers—is expensive. The most comparable operation is Slate, which is nestled sweetly in the sheltering bosom of the Washington Post Company. This is what Salon itself now hopes to find: a large media company patron that will pick up Salon, cover its losses, and let it continue to operate, figuring that its prestige and opportunities for synergy are worth the (relatively small, by big media company standards) red ink it accumulates on a yearly basis.

It’s fair, now, to say that this particular format simply isn’t profitable. No amount of better content would make this particular format profitable. To become profitable in its current format, Salon would have to slash expenses to the point that their quality would suffer severely. Online ad money—even supplemented with subscriptions, which Salon’s tried—just won’t support the level of staff and expense necessary to produce that kind of content on an independent site. (Sorry, all you other startups who had the same idea!)

Gawker Media is a lean, mean stable of diversified blogs that can cross-sell. The Huffington Post is a bare-bones operation that takes much of its content wholesale from other news organizations, and gets another chunk donated for free by aspiring writers. Politico has print ads to bring in cash. Drudge, Perez Hilton, and other successful blogs are tiny operations with nowhere near the staff expenses of Salon. Media models that have proven to be profitable online tend to be cheap, or to have alternate revenue streams to supplement them. For Salon, and others who bring a print-style cost structure to an internet-style ad revenue stream, disappointment is almost inevitable.

And the dream of simply being scooped up by a bigger media company isn’t a sound one. Sure, it still might happen, but for how long? Big media companies have their own problems—namely, that many of their traditional properties are losing revenue to online interlopers. Like Salon! Even Slate’s parent company makes its money off test prep services, not off its namesake newspaper. Big tech companies like Yahoo that want to get into the content business are a better bet in the near term for journalism operations looking to find a new home, but they, too, will inevitably want those content businesses to prove profitable eventually; there is no free lunch at public companies. Only at Conde Nast.

Read more at gawker.com

If You Can’t Beat ’em, Join ’em. Time Warner Decides To Join Forces With Google

A staggering stat (from Google) indicated that YouTube (owned by Google) has more content uploaded in 60 days then the three major TV networks broadcast in 60 years. It would stand to reason then that the networks would want to become play ball with Google. This is exactly what Time Warner Inc. is doing by playing ball with Google Inc. Not to be outdone, NBC Universal’s CNBC network and the NBA also announced they would build Google TV software applications. The plan for Google world domination continues.

Amplify’d from www.wallstreetjournal.com
The chief executive of Time Warner Inc. said he is turning to Google Inc. as an ally in his push to bring cable shows to users across various devices and that the Web giant’s new service for accessing and searching Internet programming on TVs isn’t the threat many television distributors fear.

Jeffrey Bewkes, who oversees a company that includes the TNT, TBS and HBO cable networks, also predicted a “massive amount of competition” for Netflix Inc. and Hulu LLC as more content owners make their TV shows available through operators on demand and online and as cable and satellite companies improve their experiences.

“When all of the content on the big screen works like the content on the little screen what will happen? The programming will trump the interface,” he said.

[BEWKES] Bloomberg NewsTime Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, shown in May, says content is still key.

Mr. Bewkes’s comments come as media executives are agonizing over which new Internet distributors to supply shows to and whether to pursue new digital distribution methods on their own. Hulu and Netflix had no comment.

Time Warner has been championing a model it calls “TV Everywhere,” allowing cable and satellite subscribers to watch the TV shows they pay for in their traditional TV bundles online, free.

Tuesday Mr. Bewkes said that Time Warner, which already has deals to enable Comcast Corp. and Verizon Communications Inc. subscribers to watch shows from its cable networks online, has or is close to finalizing similar deals with Dish Network Corp., DirecTV Group Inc., AT&T Inc. and other cable operators as well.

Monday, the company also endorsed the Google TV technology, saying it would optimize some of its television websites, including those of TNT, TBS and CNN, for viewing on TVs carrying Google TV. It said it would do the same with its HBO GO website, through which some viewers who subscribe to the premium cable channel can watch its shows online. The arrangement isn’t a business deal.

Google is working with several partners to build televisions and boxes carrying its software. Logitech International SA plans to discuss its set-top box running Google’s new software Wednesday.

NBC Universal’s CNBC network and the NBA also announced they would build Google TV software applications that provide access to content like financial news and sports scores. Other television networks—including the major broadcast networks—have largely been mum about whether they plan to work with Google’s service.

Read more at www.wallstreetjournal.com

 

How an App Store Could Revolutionize the TV Industry

Did I get out of the television industry just in time or could my two worlds… that of new media and traditional media… be coming together in an Apple App Store? I’ll be watching the development of Apple TV very closely but in the meantime, I’ll stand by one of the very first blog posts I ever wrote “content is King” (or as someone pointed out… Queen… or Emperor… or whatever dictator name you feel appropriate to insert)

Amplify’d from theappleblog.com

This week’s media event could finally confirm (or scuttle) rumors of a new Apple TV device. If it’s based on iOS 4, like many pundits believe, there’s strong potential for this device to feature its own App Store. If such a future came to fruition, Apple could be facing another round of tough negotiations with content producers like it faced when it introduced the world to digital music and movie downloads. If it’s successful though, Apple could revolutionize the television content marketplace.

The Current Marketplace

Consider how you currently watch TV, which could be through broadcast or cable television. If you watch cable, you pay a fee to a provider (like AT&T), which allows you to see certain channels based on your subscription (though that model doesn’t seem to be panning out so well anymore). The providers pay a portion of your subscription fees directly to the networks (an average of about 26 cents per channel). Networks make additional money with the ads they run on their channels as well. If a network doesn’t show ads, you can expect they charge the cable provider substantially more than 26 cents per channel, and the opposite is true if they show an average amount of ads. This is all relative and pretty much a standard business model.

How Apple Could Shake Things Up

With the introduction of the App Store, we’re starting to see how some industries are shaking up the status quo. For instance, consider the magazine industry. Wired now provides its app directly to consumers, and can sell a digital version of its magazine at a comparable price (per issue) to the newsstand price. Yet, without having to incur the printing costs behind it, and even while giving Apple 30 percent of the revenue, Wired pockets a lucrative profit.

Can the same model work for the television industry? Network providers already provide their content through iTunes, and, through negotiation, have arranged to sell content at $2-$3 per episode. Rumors of 99-cent TV shows have been rampant but unfulfilled, simply because of the tough negotiations required to make it happen. Could the solution be to simply bring an App Store directly to the TV? If so, similar to the Hulu or Netflix app, a network provider like HGTV (s sni) could provide its own app for free and charge within for in-app content, like episodes of a show. If it wanted to provide streaming content of the past few episodes for free, it could do so. As long as it approves of the 70/30 profit split with Apple, it would maintain a lot more control over its content and pricing. The networks would be happy, and Apple would be happy. Networks could still run ads as they wished and earn even more profit.

Who would stand to lose from this? At the outset, nobody, but if such a solution were to become mainstream, then cable providers could begin to see a dip in subscriptions. Why would most consumers pay a monthly fee of $30 to over $100 if they only want to watch a certain show or a certain network? Instead of paying for needless extra content that consumers never watch (based on their own viewing habits), they can pay for content that matters to them. The providers are aware of this, which is why many of them also provide internet service (think about Verizon, Comcast (c cmcsa) and AT&T).

Read more at theappleblog.com

The Huffington Post is profitable, although just barely.

According to Newsweek, in an engaging profile of Arianna Huffington, the popular and expanding Huffington Post generates little more than $1 per reader each year. So while it is clearly the winner among Internet media companies a new business model may be in order.

Amplify’d from www.newsweek.com

Charles Ommanney / Getty Images for Newsweek

Arianna Huffington at her home in July.

If you had to declare a winner among Internet media companies today, the victor easily would be Arianna Huffington. Her site, The Huffington Post, attracted 24.3 million unique visitors last month, five times as much traffic as many new-media rivals, more than The Washington Post and USA Today, and nearly as many as The New York Times. HuffPo’s revenue this year will be about $30 -million—peanuts compared with the old-media dinosaurs, but way better than most digital competitors. And HuffPo has finally started to eke out a profit.

Those numbers, however, don’t fully convey the site’s place in this new-media world. What began five years ago as a spot for Huffington and her lefty celebrity friends to vent about the Bush administration has become one of the most important news sites on the Web, covering politics, sports, entertainment, business—along with plenty of tabloidy stuff to drive clicks, like photos of “Jennifer Aniston’s topless perfume ad.” HuffPo’s mission, Huffington says, is “to provide a platform for a really important national conversation.”

Read more at www.newsweek.com

The Huffington Post is profitable, although just barely.

According to Newsweek, in an engaging profile of Arianna Huffington, the popular and expanding Huffington Post generates little more than $1 per reader each year. So while it is clearly the winner among Internet media companies a new business model may be in order.

Amplify’d from www.newsweek.com

If you had to declare a winner among Internet media companies today, the victor easily would be Arianna Huffington. Her site, The Huffington Post, attracted 24.3 million unique visitors last month, five times as much traffic as many new-media rivals, more than The Washington Post and USA Today, and nearly as many as The New York Times. HuffPo’s revenue this year will be about $30 -million—peanuts compared with the old-media dinosaurs, but way better than most digital competitors. And HuffPo has finally started to eke out a profit.

Those numbers, however, don’t fully convey the site’s place in this new-media world. What began five years ago as a spot for Huffington and her lefty celebrity friends to vent about the Bush administration has become one of the most important news sites on the Web, covering politics, sports, entertainment, business—along with plenty of tabloidy stuff to drive clicks, like photos of “Jennifer Aniston’s topless perfume ad.” HuffPo’s mission, Huffington says, is “to provide a platform for a really important national conversation.”

Read more at www.newsweek.com

New York Mag Links Up With Foursquare. Have you checked in lately?

A magazine taking advantage of location-based social networking. I have to say this is genius. I can see an immediate link between an actual venue an geo-location sites… but a magazine? Hats off to their digital, marketing or whatever department came up with this partnership.

Amplify’d from www.mediaweek.com

mw/photos/stylus/112207-NewYorkMagM.jpg

New York magazine’s Web site nymag.com has linked up with Foursquare,becoming the latest in a rash of traditional media companies tohook up with the location-based social networking service.
 
Users of the service can “check in” when they visit localbusinesses, alerting friends of their location while earning pointsthat can be redeemed for perks at the business. In recent months,The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Time Out New Yorkhave partnered with Foursquare to distribute news and othereditorial content.
 
New York magazine is using Foursquare to grow the audience for itspopular restaurant, bargains and nightlife listings, data thatcurrently drive 10 percent of its Web traffic.
 
New York’s followers on Foursquare—which number 7,000—will haveaccess to tips from the magazine’s online database that includes5,000 restaurants, 1,600 bars and 5,500 stores.Read more at www.mediaweek.com

Huffington Post well on it’s way to becoming an Internet Newspaper

At a time when traditional newspapers and publishing as a whole are facing some of their most challenging times, the Huffington Post has found a way to remain relevant. Positioning themselves as an “Internet Newspaper” is a brilliant idea in my book or rather… iBook.

Amplify’d from www.thewrap.com

Last summer, when the Huffington Post was prepping the launches of its sports, tech and books sections, Arianna Huffington told me – and anyone who would listen – that her goal for HuffPo all along had been to create an Internet newspaper.

“We always knew that with our core values of news and opinion and community, we wanted to cover more than just politics,” Huffington said. “We needed to speak to more than that, to move like an Internet newspaper.”

On Wednesday, Huffington inched even closer, launching a travel section.

The section, HuffPost Travel, will be edited by Kate Auletta, the daughter of New Yorker writer and author Ken Auletta and former assistant features editor at “WSJ.” – the Wall Street Journal’s luxury magazine.

Read more at www.thewrap.com

New York Mag Links Up With Foursquare. Have you checked in lately?

A magazine taking advantage of location-based social networking. I have to say this is genius. I can see an immediate link between an actual venue an geo-location sites… but a magazine? Hats off to their digital, marketing or whatever department came up with this partnership.

Amplify’d from www.mediaweek.com

mw/photos/stylus/112207-NewYorkMagM.jpg

New York magazine’s Web site nymag.com has linked up with Foursquare,
becoming the latest in a rash of traditional media companies to
hook up with the location-based social networking service.
 
Users of the service can “check in” when they visit local
businesses, alerting friends of their location while earning points
that can be redeemed for perks at the business. In recent months,
The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Time Out New York
have partnered with Foursquare to distribute news and other
editorial content.
 
New York magazine is using Foursquare to grow the audience for its
popular restaurant, bargains and nightlife listings, data that
currently drive 10 percent of its Web traffic.
 
New York’s followers on Foursquare—which number 7,000—will have
access to tips from the magazine’s online database that includes
5,000 restaurants, 1,600 bars and 5,500 stores.Read more at www.mediaweek.com

 

CNN International event looking at rise of mobile journalism

I’m glad a respected, international, news agency is addressing the use of mobile journalists. I only wish I was in London so I could attend the conference. Hopefully, someone on the mobiel journalism side will live tweeting from this conference. Or, better yet, maybe someone will be live streaming from their smartphone.  Isn’t that what we’re talking about here?

Amplify’d from www.journalism.co.uk
Speakers at the Frontline Club, led by CNNi’s own vice-president of mobile Louis Gump, will debate the role of mobile phones in newsgathering and reporting, as well as offering practical advice for journalists on mobile technologies.
CNNi The rise of the “mobile journalist” will be the subject of a free event this Thursday (22 July) hosted by CNN International.

Recent developments, such as the launch of the iPhone 4 and a move towards broadcast quality video via mobile, will also be on the agenda.
The motivation of “citizen journalists” who share and submit news tips and material to organisations will also be considered during the evening, which is supported by Journalism.co.uk.

Read more at www.journalism.co.uk

 

CNN International event looking at rise of mobile journalism

I’m glad a respected, international, news agency is addressing the use of mobile journalists. I only wish I was in London so I could attend. Hopefully, someone on the mobile journalism side will live tweet from the conference. Or, better yet, maybe someone will be live streaming it from their smartphone.  This is, after all, what we’re attempting to address here, correct?

Amplify’d from www.journalism.co.uk
Speakers at the Frontline Club, led by CNNi’s own vice-president of mobile Louis Gump, will debate the role of mobile phones in newsgathering and reporting, as well as offering practical advice for journalists on mobile technologies.
CNNi
The rise of the “mobile journalist” will be the subject of a free event this Thursday (22 July) hosted by CNN International.
Recent developments, such as the launch of the iPhone 4 and a move towards broadcast quality video via mobile, will also be on the agenda.
The motivation of “citizen journalists” who share and submit news tips and material to organisations will also be considered during the evening, which is supported by Journalism.co.uk.

Read more at www.journalism.co.uk

Hats off to Baltimore Mayor Rawlings-Blake who shares the value of social media… on YouTube of course

President Obama used the social media space like no other candidate before him (and none since) to raise money and raise awareness. Here’s a look at Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake sharing the importance of using social media on… what else… YouTube. Our officials are starting to get it!

Amplify’d from weblogs.baltimoresun.com

Watch the video of Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake talking about how and why she uses online social media:

Video production by Storyfarm New Media (www.sfnewmedia.com) and KO Digital (www.kopublicaffairs.com).

See more at weblogs.baltimoresun.com