Welcome to the Digital Newsroom! (JRN 300)

This blog is a kind of living syllabus. It’ll be the home for assignments, reading responses, and more. If you have questions about what we’re doing, check here first.

In our first class, we created blogs in WordPress. This week, you should pick a topic for your blog, write your first post, and create an About page.

Part 1: Pick a topic

Give your blog a title and describe its focus (in about a paragraph) in a comment to this post. Make sure you comment as your WordPress identity so that I can find you! Your blog must have a clear MEDIA focus that goes beyond your own opinions – it can’t just be a diary or your movie reviews. Also, no:

  • cat/dog/cute animal pictures
  • recipes
  • sports, entertainment, fashion/health tips, and so on. You CAN use these subjects if your focus is clearly on their media angle – for example, if you cover issues in sports journalism – but your focus should not be on, say, whether the Patriots played with deflated footballs.

For inspiration, you could check out some other media-oriented blogs like Nieman Lab, Digiday, and Poynter’s Mediawire.

Part 2: Write your first post

Write up a good first post for your blog. You might describe different arguments being made about a subject relevant to your topic, linking to each argument. Don’t just list, though. Provide evidence and synthesize something new: what are the bigger themes?

Other requirements:

  • Come up with a good headline – make it something that would catch YOUR interest.
  • Include at least one high-quality link in every post. This means links to CONTENT, not to Wikipedia, Facebook, or the New York Times homepage.
  • Report on the conversation. What’s being said? Can you get at the heart of the discussion and tell us something new about it? Use links and evidence strategically – it doesn’t need to be long.
  • Post between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Part 3: Create an About page

Your blog needs a place to explain to readers what it’s about. You could do this as a first post, but over time, this will get buried under a bunch of other posts. Instead, create an About page.

In your dashboard:

  1. Pages > All Pages
  2. Click “About”
  3. Write some appropriate “about” content to replace the default content
  4. Publish!

What’s appropriate “about” content? You could include:

  • What’s the blog about? (Duh.) But this may not be such an easy thing to spell out, since you’re just getting started. Give it a shot anyway.
  • Who’s the author? Tell us your background. What are you studying? What are your interests and accomplishments?
  • Where can I find you? Let interested readers know where they can hear more from you, such as your Pace ePortfolio or Twitter (if you’re not on there yet, you will need to be soon!).

For other ideas on what makes a good “About” page, check out this read from Ramsay Taplin (aka the Blog Tyrant).

Due by the beginning of our next class.


22 thoughts on “Welcome to the Digital Newsroom! (JRN 300)

  1. better late than never — I will focus my blog on advertisements. In other words, how we as humans are manipulated (whether it be in a good or bad sense) by the advertisements that are shown to us daily as Americans. I won’t only focus on current events, but past advertisements. My blog might become somewhat satirical, because I feel that using advertisements (well, the ones I see) to manipulate the masses is wrong.


  2. Hello! My name is Andrea and my blog is called Music and the Media for now. I’ll be discussing how different media sources (tv, magazines, websites) report on issues related to music and how this may influence the perception of each viewer. And sorry this is late, i just joined the class and just got the hang of what i should be doing.



  3. In a broad sense, my blog topic will be media ethics, which will give me certain leeway on the specific issues I cover. More specifically, I want to write on moral and ethical issues as covered by the media. I will also write on how the media covers religion and science. I am still working on my blog’s name.


  4. Hello! My blog (for now) is called “Redefining the Fashion World” because I decided to focus on the relations between social media and how it has shaped the fashion industry – specifically with Instagram and Twitter. I want to address the positive and negative factors social media outlets may have on fashion, and vice versa, as well as the evolving marketing strategies and how consumer/producer engagements have expanded. Here it is: https://nihalaq.wordpress.com/ – thanks!


  5. My blog is titled Thinking outside the box of Entertainment and what I plan on talking about is music, television, and video games. Some of my content will be about controversial issues related to each of my subjects and some will be about how they have changed over the years. What I want to do is allow my readers to look at the everyday things like music videos and certain video games and try to get them to have a different perspective on things that they currently have.

    my blog link is xavierarterberry.wordpress.com


    1. Entertainment is a pretty broad area… remember, you want people to read what you’re writing. There are lots of other bloggers out there writing about these kinds of topics… how will you distinguish yourself? Since you’re such an avid consumer of videos, maybe that’s a potential focus?


  6. My blog is called “Disorderly Media” and will focus on the media’s portrayal of and influence on mental illness. So far, I have a good amount of ideas to work with, but am open to broadening it to general psychology in the future. I think as the semester goes on, current events will play a big role in which topics I choose to discuss.

    The link to my blog is disorderlymedia.wordpress.com.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My blog topic is pretty broad at the moment. I’ve focused it on how the media covers fashion and entertainment through all different media channels (social media, magazines, video, print). I think from here I’m going to focus not only what they cover but also the positives and negatives that this media coverage has on our everyday lives. I need to pick my brain a bit more…

    Here’s my blog link: https://ellesfashionblog.wordpress.com


    1. Yes, this probably needs to be narrowed down a bit. Also, can you confirm who are? You don’t identify yourself by any other name but “Elle” in your blog and I didn’t see any “Elles” on last week’s index cards…


  8. Hello! I’ve been thinking a lot about the topic I will be doing for my first post and I have decided to do it on social media’s effects on human interaction and behavior. I plan on researching what technology does to the human brain and why people depend on it so much. I think what caused me to want to pick this topic is because I have two little cousins that are eight and ten years old, who are totally invested into their iTouch’s. I’m not sure what the title of my post will be yet, but I am thinking of something along the lines of simply “Social Media’s Affects on Human Interaction and Behavior.” I usually write my blog first before I choose a title, so that title may change. Stay tuned!

    My blog link: ltassinari1.wordpress.com


  9. The Topic I have decided to blog about is NASA and it’s new findings in cosmology. I will focus on missions that are taking place, new findings regarding other planets, scheduled astronomy nights, and I am going to try to incorporate how social media handles some of this information. In my opinion, space is one of the most fascinating things known to man, so I want to share and educate people on upcoming news as well as provide fun pictures and videos to really grab my readers attention. The title for my blog is simply “NASA 2015” because I find simplicity to be most effective, however if I can come up with a catchier line I will most likely update this.

    to access my blog, click https://kaycelee.wordpress.com/


  10. My blog is entitled “Journeying Journalism.” It will cover the relationship between media and the travel industry. Media coverage is essential to the travel industry because it is a major outlet for the sharing of travel information, stories and photography. For my blog, I plan to discuss how travel is covered by the media, how the media affects consumer travel decisions, and other important travel journalism topics. The link to my blog is: journeyingjournalism.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hey! It’s Courtney here. Being how indecisive I am, I am sure I will tweak my blog’s title and focus with time. For now, I am thinking of titling my blog as, “In the Moment of Social Media.” I really want to focus in on the impact social media has on our lives. Like it or not, social media has advanced us in so many different ways. I know I should be more specific in less or more words. I would like to discuss social media fame, how social media has become a source of income, the personal connections/disconnections, etc. I really want to go more into detail with discussing how different society is today with the use of social media outlets. I am very much into entertainment and keep up with a lot of entertainment news on a day to day basis, so I may want to shift my focus further towards hollywood and it’s relationship with social media. Just a thought! I am still new to wordpress so I will post my link here anyways, https://courtneycabsmedia.wordpress.com/ Hope to discuss this further in class.


    1. Social media is a pretty broad topic. I think you’ll be able to show the impact of social media better if you focus it a bit more. Even social media and Hollywood might be a little too broad. Try to think of something that will provide a steady stream of things to write about but is focused enough that you can establish a good niche for your writing.


  12. My Blog topic is going to be media and how it relates and affects the Film Industry. Social media has had a large impact on the film industry which is also, in my opinion, the middle of a digital revolution. We will see a lot of change in how media interacts with film in the coming years, so this to me is an interesting topic to cover. I think it would be too specific to cover a specific genre in film so I will focus on the Industry as a whole.


  13. I’m going to stay with my old wordpress site and I’m going to focus on sportsjournalism and how the media covers, reacts and even impacts the sportsworld with their stories and reports. I’m not quite sure how many sports I will cover, but I feel certain that it will at least include soccer and the NBA.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s