ONLY IN THE TIMES OF LONDON

Files under General | Jun 30th

vuvuzela

Today, in a letter to the editor:

“Sir, Has the World Cup been a disaster? Yes, it has. My parrot has learnt to mimic the vuvuzela”

Dr. Alun Stedman Stevenage.


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BRONZE NEWSPAPER BOYS

Files under General | Jun 28th

Paper boy

The latest addition to my collection of less than $40 per unit newspaper boys collection.

Any tips about more pieces like this one are welcomed!



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JAMES DAO, THE NEW YORK TIMES AND WHY YOU WILL PAY FOR UNIQUE REPORTING

Files under General | Jun 28th

NYT JAMES DAO

Yesterday’s New York Times front page story was a “tour de force” and a reminder of how it pays to invest in real reporting.

While the Afghanistan war coverage normally gets hidden by the usual “big news” of the day (England exits the Soccer World Cup, the last Lady Gaga silly provocation or the G20 staged event where thousands of recording-journalists play the sources game), James Dao, The New York Times national correspondent starts his dramatic “A Year at War” chronicles.

A one year coverage that starts now but will continue on print and on line.

With pictures and videos that you will not forget.

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Welcome to the real world.

Welcome to real journalism.

That’s The New York Times as its best.

Investing in new narratives in a very moving way.

Just read the comments and you will realize how powerful is the story.

Or the “reader submitted” pieces, like this one.

Kudos to the multimedia team that includes the reporting skills of James Dao; the photography and videography of Damon Winter and Rob Harris; the production of Gabriel Dance, Nancy Donaldson, Catrin Einhorn, Andrew Kueneman and Meaghan Looram.

And if this is not enough for you, just read Frank Rich‘s fabulous “The 36 Hours That Shook Washington” column with a devastating indictment to the Washington press corp.

This Sunday edition was, believe me, a “collector’s issue” or a textbook about the journalism of the future.

Not about gadgets, technology, magic tricks, branding, and other disturbing distractions.


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BP OIL SPILL REPORTING: MEDIA LESSONS

Files under General | Jun 27th

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Media has failed to cover, before, during and after, the Gulf spill in such a dramatic way that some lesson must be learned.

1. If you get too close to your sources, you follow their agenda.

2. PR dominates and controls business and financial coverage more than ever.

3. “Embedded journalists” get access but a high credibility cost.

4. Online and social media networks react to the news, but are unable to anticipate or prevent them.

5. Politicians and local authorities are trap and neutralized by the constant lobby efforts

6. If you want to report these mega-events you need to be there: virtual journalism is not enough.

7. Filtering, double-checking, asking questions, going back to the past, leaning from similar disasters, and using visual journalism techniques are essential to deliver reliable and compelling news and stories.

8. Avoid to become an activist, fair coverage includes to check with all the involved players.

9. Be aware that PR intoxication is becoming very sophisticated with online webs, search engines, and social networks.

10. As always, report the facts before the opinions. As INNOVATION’s Andrew Mango said: “facts are expensive, opinions are cheap”.

The BP big story has to be told in a different way.

Just some revealing cases to understand how the media missed the story:

•  The New York Times Andrew Revkin reports about “a wild bit of faux journalism recently concocted by BP as part of its  public relations efforts related to the gusher in the Gulf of Mexico. On his blog, a BP “reporter,”  Tom Seslar, describes  a two-hour helicopter flight over the gulf with a team charting oil patches… He somehow finds space in his post to describe the scope and vital importance of the oil industry and the beauty of the coastal marshes. He fits in a plug for the  Louisiana Shrimp & Petroleum Festival scheduled for early September… and includes the festival’s promotional line describing “the unique way in which these two seemingly different industries work hand-in-hand culturally and environmentally” — with no hint of the deep irony, of course… But he doesn’t include a single line describing the spreading gulf slicks that the flight is supposed to chart.”

Just search anything including the word BP and you will get in the top a “sponsored link” with the BP Oil Spill Response.

Oild Florida reports that “Florida has received $75 million to date from BP Keys get BP money, Key West Citizen, June 26, 2010: The Monroe County Tourist Development Council announced Friday it will receive $400,000 for an advertising campaign to counter the misconception that the Gulf oil spill is fouling Florida Keys beaches and waters.”

(Picture by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)


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FIRST POLISH EDITION OF OUR INNOVATIONS IN NEWSPAPERS WORLD REPORT

Files under General | Jun 23rd

IIN Polish cover

A first!

The first Polish edition of our Innovations in Newspaper World Report is almost ready thanks to Adam Wojdyło, president of the Polish Readership Survey) and the efforts of our friend Marek Miller.

The English one will be available in a few days.

Like the German one.


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WE NEED LESS INCOMPETENT AND IRRESPONSIBLE LEADERS

Files under General | Jun 20th

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Newspapers must help us to end the lack of leadership of incompetent and irresponsible people like the CEO of BP and the Primer Minister of Spain.

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Tony Hayward is a dead body after going to sail in the middle of the oil crisis en the Gulf of Mexico (I will not join him in any boat), and Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero is a comic phantom waiting for his replacement.

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Clowns are not allowed to play business of politics.

The first is almost killing one the biggest UK companies in the world, and the other sinking the 9th largest economy of the world.

They must exit right now and enter in the Guiness record for some of the worst leaders of this Century.


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HANS DICHAND, KRONEN ZEITUNG PUBLISHER, IS DEAD

Files under General | Jun 18th

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I was speaking yesterday at the Austrian Newspaper Publisher Association annual meeting and a few minutes after my presentation I saw in the streets the first copies of an extra edition of the Kronen Zeitung, one of the most widely read dailies per capita in the world with almost 3 million readers in a country of just over 8 million.

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The black and white picture of Hans Dichand (89) was in the front page just with these dates 1921-2010.

Today’s edition keeps the black and white picture.

I don’t know about the reasons because this is a full color paper.

And the picture is not a very one either.

Better is the coverage in their website where you can lite a virtual candle in his memory, and more than 1.800 people have done it, leaving behind their names and email.

lite a candel

Dichand’s paper has a very poor design but is full of popular content presented in a very small format (Time magazine size), but as always happens with successful newspapers, Kronen Zeitung is an opinionated, newspaper, strong on populist campaigns,  read by the rich and the poor, respected and feared by politicians and businessmen.

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Readers like it, and today’s edition (1 euro) with 88 pages and glossy magazine of 68 pages shows that print media is well alive in Austria.


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NEWSDAY, THE FIRST INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPER LAUNCHED IN ZIMBABWE WTH THE HELP OF INNOVATION

Files under General | Jun 15th

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I meet Trevor Ncube more than one year ago in Montreux during the Swiss Press Congress.

In his presentation, he made a strong case for this project, and I offered him our help as an INNOVATION pro-bono work.

So INNOVATION is very proud that last week NewsDay was able to hit the sreets of Harare.

“Everyday News for Everyday People” is its slogan.

The first 20,000 copies of the inaugural issue were sold our in just a few hours, and now Trevor believes that the paper will double its circulation in less than six months.

INNOVATION’s Pedro Monteiro has been our consultant behind the project, ad he deserves our gratitude.

Thanks also to Dinos dos Santos, the Portuguese typeface designer that gave the entire Velino typeface for free in support of this amazing project.

The Velino type family is still not available to the general public.

As you can imagine, his work has not been easy.

A country in deep crisis.

With no press freedom.

And just two dozens of journalists to produce a daily newspaper…

But the lack of local resources was not a problem because all the NewsDay team had a strong will to produce a real newspaper in a very surreal country where President Robert Mugabe has been in power since Zimbabwean independence in 1980, and a media crackdown saw the last independent daily newspaper banned by his party in 2003.

NewsDay will not win many awards, but I am sure that will win the hopes and hearths of a country needed of real journalism.

As Trevor Ncube said in the first issue: this is not a regular newspaper but the “hope of a tortured nation”.

Trevor Ncube, the founding chairman of NewsDay, was the host of the World Newspaper Congress in South Africa a few years ago and he wrote the preface of that year’s INNOVATIONS IN NEWSPAPERS report.

So we wish to him and the NewsDay team all our best.

The paper needs more help, so if you are willing to support this cause please write to Trevor at:

TrevorN@mg.co.za

NEW DAILY in the Streets

Watch here a video about the NewsDay launch.

Read here a vibrant column written by Trevor Ncube.

Follow its story on Twitter.


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FROM IPHONE TO IMAT, AND NOW THE INNOVATION’S RUBBER IPAD.

Files under General | Jun 15th

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Via Buzzhunt.

Next: the INNOVATION’s Rubber iPad.

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JUST LOOK TO HIS EYES… TIRED, ALONE, LOST, DONE

Files under General | Jun 15th

Antonio Heredia took a great picture.

And El Mundo of Madrid edited very well.

Just look at these eyes… and you will see a political dead body.

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, the Spanish socialist primer minister is a zoombie.

Tired.

Alone.

Lost.

Done.

Who’s next?

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In another great picture of EFE, he seems ready to pray.

Well, it must be the last resource.

For us too.

Let’s pray he understands that he is part of the mess.

Not the solution.

But the problem.


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