Coming to Terms with My News

I went back and looked at what we have read this so far during this course. I like to do that because the readings always seem to click a little better after class discussion. I went all the way back to the first reading “Coming to Terms” by Joseph Harris. He suggests asking three questions about a reading:

1. Aims– What is the writer trying to achieve?
2. Methods– How does the writer relate examples to ideas?
3. Materials– Where does the writer go for examples and evidence?

I have to confess when I read the news on my laptop in the mornings, I do not really come to terms with what I am reading. Shame on me. It is probably one of the most important times for me to question what I am reading. So, this morning I decided to change my ways and really come to terms with what I was reading.

You have to see it to believe it!

You have to see it to believe it!

CNN is always one of the sources I go to for my news, and the first story I read was about the amazingly hot heat wave in California. So what was the aim of the author of this story? The obvious answer is to inform the public of the heatwave, but it does come right after the presidents speech on global warming. The timing serves to reinforce the warnings about global warming. I am having a little trouble distinguishing between the methods and the materials. They ranged from images to interviews with residents and emergency officials. There was also a mention of the National Weather Services record for highest temperature, 134 degrees, at Death Valley in 1913 (that is just stupid hot). The use of credible sources like the CDC, the National Weather Service, and paramedics and police departments.

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Missed Opportunity and New Images

I was at first uncomfortable using images in my posts. I had no idea how to approach it. I went back and examined my “Did I mention my Pulitzer” post. In the Pulitzer post I saw a couple of places where an image would enhance my writing.

I really want the text to be the focus of this most so I do not think it would have been appropriate to have a picture at the very top. I was torn about this decision because I believe visuals do help draw readers in. I could have incorporated a picture of the Hudsucker Proxy but that may confuse readers because it is not really the subject of the post.

The main place I saw that should have had a picture was in the section about the of winners of the Investigative Journalism Pulitzer. I spend time talking about them and it would help the audience to see who I am describing. The picture should be medium and at the right of the text discussing them. Like so. This way the reader sees the text first and then looks at the picture second to see who I am discussing.

David Barstow and Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab with Lee C. Bollinger.

David Barstow and Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab with Lee C. Bollinger.

My motivation in writing that post was curiosity. I was curious and I figured maybe other people would like to learn what I have learned, so I put it out there. I am not sure if that is a good enough motivation or not. The Pulitzer is a prestigious award, and anyone who wants to be a journalist should be aware of the top writers in this field.

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Exploring the relationship between news media and digital media is the whole purpose of my blog. I found the picture of a hand holding this world of media and though it was perfect. The hand holding the world of information conveyed the message to readers that both they and I hold this world in our hands. Fanpop-all-around-the-world-fanpop-583858_1024_768 Using digital media we can shape our news experience in ways we never could before. The other aspect I liked most was the hand being a glowing, digital looking part of the image. It just serves to reinforce the idea of the reader interacting with this digital world.