December 4, 2008

Media Ethics

While searching for media ethics I looked at a number of sites. Among them were the SPJ code of ethics, the Poynter ethics process and the code of ethics from the New York Times. Both the SPJ and Poynter were short (a couple pages) of basic guidelines and procedures to follow to ensure ethical journalism. The NY times had a much more in depth look at basically all of the company's policies when it comes to ethics.

November 12, 2008

Food Writing

The first review I looked at was A.A. Gill from the London Times. I really like his style of writing because it flows very well and seems effortless, like he’s simply ranting at you for ten minutes. The review was very negative of the restaurant, which was in Budapest, interestingly enough. It mixed very vivid imagery of the place and workers, and description of the food with sarcasm and humor, all with a negative spin. I especially like his quote “indubitably the worst concept for a restaurant I’ve ever come across, bad food with intrusive arias in a basement in the city.? Funny, and very persuading. If I were ever in Budapest (not likely) I would definitely not go to this place.

The other article about restaurants I looked at was from the New York Times. It is basically just a quick piece about a few good places to eat in New York City. There is about a paragraph describing each, just keeping it basic with a few fun facts about them. The names of the places are in bold and linked to the actual reviews of the restaurant. This is a nice feature helpful for finding quick information.

October 21, 2008

Opinion Writing

The first bit of opinion writing I read was something that I am interested in, sports. I looked at Tom Powers' (from the Pioneer Press) take on the Vikings-Bears game this past Sunday. His article is titled "Vikings find new, interesting ways to lose" to which I laughed out loud upon reading it. This title sums up the whole article. It is basically bashing the Vikings and saying how they always find a way to screw up. The column has a very negative tone to it, and is also very sarcastic. I think the sarcasm helps to add humor to something that could just be a boring, hateful piece,and makes it much more enjoyable to read. Personally I like when sports reporting takes a side because I usually have an opinion and like to either agree or disagree with the writer.

Another article I looked at was from The New York Times, written by an unknown author (I don't read the Times too much so I'm not sure if this is a usual thing or not). Anyways, the article titled "questions about their health" and is about both of the presidential and vice presidential candidates not wanting to disclose personal health information. It does not really take either side, saying both McCain and Obama (and their running mates) have been giving limited to no valid information. The column also claims this to be a very important issue that the candidates should not be dodging, seeing as their health is vitally important to the position they wish to attain. I like the way this (unknown) author writes and agree with what he is saying, and I like that it is not biased towards a certain candidate.

The last one I looked at was from USA Today, and is in the Ask Matt column. The Matt is Matt Kranz, and it has his picture on the page along with some graphs that emphasize his opinion but don't really do much. Maybe its just that I don't really care too much about all this financial stuff. The question he is asked is will people get their money back from the Fannie and Freddie shares, and his answer is you can kiss that money goodbye (also stated in the title of the article). The column is pretty much just how negative the market is and how you should not invest in Fannie and Freddie stocks. I find this to be pretty boring, maybe just because its a Q and A format rather than his own opinion on a chosen topic. Either way, I like this one the least.

October 14, 2008

Photo Slide Show

On the Time Magazine website they had a variety of slide shows. The one I found most interesting was called “Trader’s faces? and showed various photos of men and women at the New York Stock Exchange. All of the photos show the traders in anguish and frustration, some with their face buried in their hands, others with concerned looks on their faces sitting at their desk. The captions are plain and simple but most have a negative connotation to them, such as “the market has fallen 21% since the beginning of October.? This slide show gives a great visual interpretation of the turmoil going on with the stock market.,29307,1849374_1779304,00.html

The next slideshow I found was on InStyle magazine’s website, it was linked from Yahoo! Entertainment. The slideshow is titled “Men of Style? and shows many male celebrities who they have voted have the best style in the way they dress. This is a lot different from the Time site, which is mainly news, not entertainment, and is definitely geared toward a more specific, primarily female audience. The pictures are all visually appealing, focusing on the men and their clothing. They look happy and well kept, the images are all kind of fun and playful. The celebrities name is on the side of the photo along with a quote that they have said about their own style.,,20170363_20169853_20421548,00.html

On the Pioneer Press website I found a Minnesota Vikings Slideshow recapping Sunday’s game vs Detroit. The images are mainly action shots from the game, focusing on main plays and events from the game. The captions are very simple objective descriptions of what was happening in the photo. I thought it was interesting that this slideshow was placed in the middle of the article written about the game. It is right under the box score and is surrounded by text, making it stand out. The photos are exciting but basic and typical of most sports photojournalism.

September 23, 2008

Financial crisis

The first article I looked at is from Time Magazine, and talks about how the financial crisis of 2008 has now changed the face of this year's presidential election. There are some big changes that will be made to the government simply because of what has happened on Wall St. There will be a massive transfer of power to the Treasury department, and a shift in taxpayer's priorities. With the new $700 Billion bailout plan, taxes will be focused primarily on that rather than new priorities that either candidate may have talked about during their campaign. The article also says that this crisis will benefit Barack Obama and the democrats much more than McCain and the republicans because it favors big government. This is primarily geared at people who are interested in politics and what effect the economy has on the presidential election.,8599,1843213,00.html

Several other articles I have read talk about Congress' $700 billion bailout. This seems to be the main focus of most stories on the topic. In Time Magazine, the articles mainly talk about what Congress and the Federal Reserve are doing to fix this situation. They talk about how Congress may extend their session in order to figure out this crisis, and that the Fed is in the best position to help. The article is purely text, a few pages in length, with a graphic of the capitol and the American flag at the top. On the other hand, an article from the Wall Street Journal on the same topic, has a completely different focus and layout.,8599,1842706,00.html

The article has a lot about Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, and what he has said Congress should do and needs to do. It also talks quotes McCain and other Republicans that say the plan should have limits or are against it. The article continues to have information and quotes from various U.S. officials, members of Congress, including House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank (who is leading negotiations in Congress), and also uses economists and economic advisors as sources. This article uses a lot more sources that Time, and focuses more on the economic aspect rather than political (even though they can often go hand in hand). The Wall Street Journal article also shows a graphic of Sen. Barney Frank, which puts a face to a name and makes the article more personal, and also contains several charts showing a visual representation of what stocks looked like during the crisis, including the effect on the U.S. dollar and oil prices. They are appealing to a more economic based audience where as Time is more broadly focused to appeal to most general readers.