September 26, 2013
This week, we used Twitter to report. This week, we’ll use another popular app, Storify, to condense the best of those Tweets into a narrative that can accompany a news story or serve as a stand-alone narrative (this assignment is adapted from Dave Burdick’s tutorial)
- Go to Storify.com and log in with your Twitter handle
- Once in, browse through the stories to get a feel for what’s possible
- Click the “Create Story” button at the top right of the screen and create a Storify page (choose Public Story) of your team’s scavenger hunt – each member creates one.
- This must be curated – not just a list of tweets – so include explanatory written detail, links, maps, and other information that fleshes things out
- In the left panel, add a title and description for your story in the blanks, then write some intro text in the main frame.
- In the right “Media” panel, click the Twitter icon (the little blue bird) and type in “#WVUblogJ”
- You can search users and keywords too, but start with this for now)
- Drag tweets and images from the right panel to where you want them in the left panel
- You can click “Images” to just display images to use, “Timeline” for tweets a single user sees, and “User” for tweets from that user
- You can also include elements from Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Instagram & Google by clicking the relevant tab on the right panel
- You can embed links to specific sites as well – just click the little chainlink icon, enter the URL, and drag it to your story (OR highlight the text to link, click the chainlink icon, and paste in the URL)
- Add text by mousing over blank areas before or after your content links. A yellow bar will appear. Click on any of these to enter text
Publishing your story
- At the top right of the left-hand window is a big, friendly blue “Publish” button – click it
- You’ll get a window with a Publicity message that lets you send this to Twitter or Facebook and also inform people you quoted
- You can change these from their defaults to something better
- You can skip this and send it later by clicking “Notify” at the top of your story panel
- This is a great way to publicize what you’re doing to the people who helped you do it!
- If your Storify is associated with an actual news story (e.g., something in the DA or WVU News), and you’re embedding the Storify at the end, switch the default link to that of your story
- NOTE: You can’t embed this code in a WordPress-hosted blog, but you can post to there by clicking “Export” (at the top)
- To embed: Click “embed” (below the headline of your story) and copy/paste the resultant text to your story (or blog post).
In-class assignment (9/26/13): Storify your scavenger hunt and publicize, adding #WVUblogJ and #JRLweb tags. Post link in comment to assignment post.
September 25, 2013
In keeping with this week’s Twitter Mega-assignment, we’ll be reading up on the work of your peers from around the country and world. All of the links provided are to classes who will either be scavenger hunting alongside you, or who are about to embark on that selfsame journey in the near future.
The other participating schools and their hashtags are below. All are posting this week unless otherwise noted:
- Auburn University at #AUJclass
- University of Maryland at #J361JD
- Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville (Mark Poepsel) at #MC202p
- Utah State University at #JCOMSocial
- American University in Cairo at #JRMC202
There are three parts to this assignment (the first two parts MUST use the #JRLweb tag to count):
- Retweet at least five posts from students at these other schools. They can be scavenger hunt items or something else relevant to the course. It is preferable that you add some of your own (brief) perspective where possible, so you’re adding to the conversation.
- Respond to at least five separate posts from students at these other schools. This is different than retweeting – you’ll need to make contact and open up an actual conversation.
- Post a comment below describing the experience. Yes, you must still read the Briggs chapter in the syllabus for class this week, and if you can integrate that into your post, god bless you, but I won’t require it.
All these things must be completed by noon, Monday, September 30.
September 19, 2013
Ordinarily we’d kick this one off in class, but as of this morning, my voice has completely left me. Instead, I’ll walk you through today’s exercis via the magic of the internet! In next Tuesday’s class, we’ll be doing a special project with several other schools – you do NOT want to miss class, for a variety of reasons – so today we need to get to know Twitter (if you already do, congratulations, this will be super easy). This “in”-class assignment will get you started (if you’re not already). The requirements are simple:
- Create a Twitter account and post your handle as a comment to this page. You may use your existing account if you have one, or you may create a new account if you’d like to keep your existing account private. Due: In class (by the end of the day), Thursday, September 19.
- NOTE: Your profile must be publicly accessible (because I have to be able to read it to grade you)
- Create a Twitter Timeline widget linked to the account you’ll be using for class and add it to your sidebar (in your Dashboard under Appearance > Widgets – NOTE: Use the “Twitter Timeline,” not “Twitter” widget). Due: In class (by the end of the day), Thursday, September 19.
- Start/continue following:
- Follow me (@thebobthe) and each of your classmates (20 of them).
- Follow ReadWrite (@rww) and Mashable (@mashable)
- Find at least 30 other people/organizations/whatever to follow. Yes, that may seem like a lot, but in Twitter terms it’s really not. A good place to start is the blogs in your blogroll – most will have a Twitter handle.
- Due: Noon, Friday, September 20.
- Post at least 10 tweets, each incorporating one or more of the following:
- links (if you don’t have an automatic link shortener, I strongly recommend tiny.url or bit.ly (now requires registration)
- In addition, at least a few of these should include the #WVUblogJ tag (and be relevant to this class!).
- Due: Noon, Monday, September 23.
Even if you’re an established Twitter user, this assignment should have you ready to tweet when you show up for class on Tuesday. See you then!
September 18, 2013
Note: This week’s readings are a bit of a slant rhyme with last, thanks to my inadvertent flipping of the scheduled online readings for microblogging and mobility. Read the assigned Briggs chapter and supplement it with the links below.
These readings have more to do with the idea of microblogging, but their on-the-go nature dovetails nicely with our previous discussion of mobility. First, what IS microblogging? Briggs lays out examples, but what does it mean to you? Here are 10 sites to get you started – some you’ll know, others are brand new. You probably realize now that this is something you already do, but how much a part of your life is the practice? Did it surprise you to learn you’ve been a microblogger for years?
Let’s talk about possibly the most widely known venue for microblogging: Twitter. First, a simple set of guidelines (from Twitter itself) for journalists and mass communicators using Twitter – start using these now. Next, a piece of research on how journalists use this tool (note: this is scholarly research, so SKIM down to the analysis and discussion – except grad students, who have to read it all). How significant are these changes in objectivity and other values? How do you understand the term “gatekeeping” (as used here), and what do you think of the changes it’s experiencing in a microblogging, social media world?
If you’ve been tweeting for a while, you know there’s an art to drawing responses, one that may still be frustrating you. You’re not alone. Check out these two pieces of tactical analysis: How to write “perfect” microblog headlines, and how to write “perfect” social media posts. As part of your response, I want you to apply some of these tactics to your posting. Experiment with time of day, wording, and posting at different times and on different platforms. Where did you see results? What form did they take? Views, likes, comments, retweets … what combinations might net you the interactions you desire?
As always, post your response a comment to this post by noon, Monday, September 23.
September 12, 2013
In this, your second round, we’ll be starting with the foundation from last week and adding lists and styles (you’ve already learned this in this week’s Codecademy module (Web Fundamentals: HTML Basics II):
First, remember these basics for coding and previewing your work:
To preview in TextWrangler
- In Chrome, go to File > Open File… and open “index.html”
- Command-Tab to select TextWrangler and write code
- Command-Tab to select Chrome and Command-R to refresh your webpage
You’ll do the following:
- Use/create WWW folder; create “index2.html”; add structural tags
- Create a comment inside <body> that says “In-class assignment #4: HTML2”
- Create a first-level heading and an intro paragraph
- Create a second-level heading and an ordered list of your top three books, movies, or bands
- Create a fourth-level heading and an unordered list of skills you possess
- Create a nested unordered list inside item #1 of your ordered list (step 3) – make this reasons why it’s #1
- Add a fourth item to the unordered list (step 4) and add an image to it
- Change background color of page
- Change top headline to Verdana font family, a different color, and centered alignment
- Change style of your intro paragraph to 30px, a different color, and centered alignment