For the final data newsday, I suffered the consequence of not being in England to work through the project. This definitely took a toll on my ability to be present for the three newsday meetings considering the obvious timezone difference, which meant I had to communicate with my group members after the meeting to find out my role. With that being said, I made sure to volunteer myself to do any of the work required before the final Friday newsday, and in this way my group members could have some weight taken off them.
More specifically, after the first of the three Friday newsday meetings I got in contact with Brett, our project manager to find out what I could do before the following Friday. Thus, I did the fact checking on our excel spreadsheet to ensure that all the data for Brett’s MP’s were correct and could be worked with for the next stage.
After the second Friday newsday meeting I got in touch with Amelia as her, Caitlin and myself were going to be working on creating a story from the MP’s who employed one of their family members. Because I am not able to call any UK number as I am home, I did all the email contacting for mine and Amelia’s MP’s to ask them the questions for our final article. Unfortunately, only one MP responded, however the depth they went into in their response gave us some great quotes for our article.
As difficult as it was to try and work through this task considering the distance, I am happy with my contribution and effort to assist my group members the best I could before each Friday meeting.
Before the start of week 8, Amelia and I were once again lucky to have thought of a story before the actual Newsday. As the weeks have gone on, it is very evident how much of a difference it can make to come in prepared with all of our sources and main idea so the entire day can flow.
Our story this week was on recent Beckett graduates struggling to find a job in their field with the major impact of covid. I was able to get in contact with two journalism graduates who sent us great video footage discussing their experience over the course of the last eight months.
Furthermore, Amelia was fortunate enough to hear back from the careers team who gave great information on how different the end of the last academic year has been in terms of the negative impact the virtual recruitment process has on recent graduates.
Our story really came together with both media elements – our bar chart showcasing the different concerns graduates are facing – as well as our video package with our interviews. We were both extremely pleased that our end product had contrasting views from both recent graduates and the Beckett careers team. The day once again could not have gone better and we are both happy with our publication.
The best part of finding a news story is when you do not have to search for it as it ends up on your doorstep. For Amelia and I this week, this is exactly what transpired as planter pots were placed just outside Amelia’s house and all through Hyde Park.
Before Friday, we did our best to reach out to councillors to be able to speak to someone about the planters as a great source. By Friday, we heard back from Councillor Al Garthwaite who ended up calling us – we used the majority of the call for our audio package. Our featured image and Vox pops we conducted were done just outside our doorstep as the planters were not far away.
We conducted a survey using the app Survey Monkey which in the end enabled us to look through over 500 responses. These were in turn made into graphs on the app automatically, and we then took the numbers, inputted them into a separate pie chart on flourish, and used the graph as another multimedia element for our article.
We were really pleased with the end result of both our article and audio package which represented a local, engaging story.
This week’s Newsday came the day after a session with Katie where we explored the use of graphs and charts in a news story. Using the site ‘Flourish’ we did a draft run through of a graph of covid cases in Yorkshire before we went into Friday with our Newsday.
Amelia and I did not want to generalize our story by making the second lockdown the focus, but rather take an angle from it and develop our story from our sources. We decided to do our story on Christmas retail shopping and how this month of lockdown is prime time for Christmas shoppers to get a head start on shopping for their family and friends.
This week we really noticed the impact and challenge finding sources for a video element would be given the lockdown circumstances. Thus, we decided to stick with our housemates who have retail experience anyway.
By the end of the day, we managed to put together a great video package as we went into town for video and photo footage, as well as the interviews we filmed. Furthermore, we created a graph of the footfall counts to add another media element which we learnt the previous day.
The second week of NewsDay’s coincided with the national event of Halloween. For both Amelia and I, it seemed as though it was a ‘no-brainer’ to create our story around the holiday.
Because we planned this from the beginning of the week, we were able to get all of our sources – except our Vox pop interviews before Friday. This truly set the pace for the day and we were much less stressed knowing that our main tasks were putting together our article and editing our audio package.
I was responsible once again for making our package, while Amelia wrote the article. Still while doing both, we were able to ask questions and help each other giving points on what we should keep the same and what we should change. Working this way can only help each other and lead to a better result of a project, which we felt we achieved. Although we spent most of the day editing, we still had an extra hour we knew we wanted to take advantage of. In this hour we went into town conducting interviews asking peoples plans for Halloween. This really shaped our NewsDay and we were both very happy with our presentation.
The first News Day really set the tone of what the next seven will look like. Although we as both students and tutors are navigating a completely different experience with online learning, the effort made by each of us really proved that it is possible to create a story whatever the circumstance may be.
I went into the day knowing what kind of story Amelia and I were going to tackle, and both of us had a good idea of our sources and interviews. This made the day a lot smoother than if we had not gathered those primary sources. Both Amelia and I worked really well together and made the most out of a situation where we could not sit side by side.
Initially, we knew it would make the day a lot easier if one of us did the visual element, and the other focused on the written piece. Thus, I produced the video package while Amelia wrote the article, and this proved just how much less stressful the day was knowing we each had our role. This is something I definitely intend on doing throughout the next weeks of NewsDay’s and I look forward to producing more stories.