For over 200 years now, the news media has been described as the fourth estate. You know the drill: once, there was the clergy, there was the nobility, and there was the common people, but only journalists could be relied upon to serve as the guardians of the naked truth. With a steady fearless resolve, […]

(With apologies to George Lucas.)

From the telegraph to the smartphone, journalists reporting from the front have always drawn upon the latest gadgets. Every day, though, a different kind of war reporter pushes technology in a very different theatre of war. I speak, of course, of the Internet, where pitched battles are fought by newsrooms across the most unassuming of […]

Edinburgh City of Print

When New Matilda shut up shop two years ago, a lot of people thought it spelt the end of a diversified independent media in Australia. It was perilous out there. This town is only big enough for one player – namely, Crikey – its closure seemed to suggest. Others disagreed. But no sooner had New Matilda closed down […]

Data-driven journalism

If Tim Berners-Lee is to be believed, the news stories of the future will be found not so much by talking to a  source in a bar, but by interrogating relationships in data. Developing the skills needed to understand and manipulate data – to uncover it, interpret it, and then share it with an audience – promises to re-imagine the […]

Picture this: you’re a journalist at a dinner party. All the guests have taken their seats, the wine glasses have been filled, and the obligatory compliments to the chef have been exhausted. Suddenly, there’s a lull in conversation. For one agonising moment the only sound filling the room is the host’s Lighthouse Family CD Vivaldi’s Four […]

The Reddit Edit

When I first heard about The Reddit Edit, I thought it was a nifty idea. It takes Reddit’s functional, information-laden appearance and turns it into a streamlined, colourful depiction of the top trending stories. The top three stories are displayed in an easy-to-use side-scrolling interface, plucked from five popular subreddits: /r/worldnews, /r/politics, /r/technology, /r/science and […]