Reading Response #11

This week, read Briggs Chapter 11 as well as these two articles: Engaging Communities: Content and Conversation by Joy Mayer and Lessons in Creating a Buzz on Social Media from BuzzFeed by Drew Sleep.

These readings all relate to ideas about building audiences. What’s the relationship between news measurement and audience engagement? (Or is there a relationship?)


12 thoughts on “Reading Response #11

  1. The most successful stories are the stories that create a reaction from your audience. When it comes to online reporting/blogging, you are writing with the purpose of getting people to respond to your stories. In order to build an audience you have to keep in mind what people re interested in and what they want to hear about. For example, news 12 caters to Westchester and trip-state area news therefore is only relevant to those who live in that area. Buzzfeed and other blog based news sources create posts about content relevant to younger crowds who then share that information on social media because they can relate, which makes these organizations successful. If you can’t get your audience to care about what you are writing or to create a response from people, then what is the point? The purpose of news to tell people something that makes them react.


  2. I think audience engagement and news measurement definitely have a strong connection with one another. When discussing journalism, especially blogging, the most important thing to have is a consistent and growing audience. Although writing can be self fulfilling, your work means nothing if no one is reading it or spreading the word about it. Being able to connect with your audience and have a strong voice that people yearn to read more, makes you a very succesful journalist in my opinion. In Briggs Chapter 11, he talks about how keeping track of everything and being on top of your work and keeping tabs on who is reading what you put out, ensures that there is no room for errors or missing important information. On the contrary, Mayer expresses in “engaging communities” that it’s extremely important to report your topics with objectivity. Although your audience may begin to request specific topics and information, you must stay true to yourself and carry your own voice through your own desired topic. I think taking advice from your auidence into consideration can be helpful, but in the end, it’s your blog and it should be what you want, without being too biased or aggressive.

    Audience engagement is all about your viewers. Who read this and when and how many times. It allows you to track how many views you’re getting which is really helpful. Tied into that is the news measurement which focusses on tracking that information and measuring it and helping you adapt to the results. Using both of these techniques are essential into successful blogging and journalism.


  3. Having an audience for your blog is what keeps a blog alive. however, in my situation (new to blogging, just trying to get the hang of it) audience doesn’t seem that important. i’m just trying to keep my blog under one topic. it can be challenging because i’m rather ADD and like to focus on different things depending on the mood i’m in. it’s hard for me to keep a constant voice throughout my blog entries. however, once the blogger is able to do this — audience starts to pour in. it is helpful to use tags as well to help your potential audience find you out of the millions of other blogs out there. Luke Lewis said something like this in the ‘about Buzzfeed’ article. “A problem with a lot of places is that they try to engage with a lot of platforms.” like me, small blogs need to start small.
    but that’s not the question you asked… “What’s the relationship between news measurement and audience engagement? (Or is there a relationship?)”
    The relationship between the both is apparent.
    “We put out a lot of different stories when we began,” he said, “but we found that the British people really love self-deprecating and class-based humour, so we did more of it.”
    If people weren’t interested in what the article has to say, there wouldn’t be any audience engagement. and if there isn’t any audience engagement, the people posting are much like me — talking to themselves. if one wants their blog to be successful, there has to be a strong link between the two.
    news measurement is an interesting concept these days. because of the amount of teens and pre-teens on the internet, there is a lot more buzz about celebrities, trends, and things that don’t really matter. the younger generation kind of owns the internet in a way… and they don’t exactly have the most interesting ideas or read the most interesting articles. so, if you want high traffic, you can write about useless stuff and get that traffic easily through hashtags and tags. so, just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s important.
    there’s a rift — older people blogging and younger readers.
    so there is a relationship between news measurement and audience engagement, but it isn’t always the best way to figure out what’s most important on the internet.


  4. I feel like having a relationship between news measurement and audience engagement is very important and it should be a good one. Journalists put out news to inform their audience about articles they can relate to. Articles that are more relatable to a certain group of audience is very important and tend to succeed more than articles that aren’t relevant. In Drew Sleep’s article, “Lessons in creating a buzz on social media from Buzzfeed”, he listed some important factors that should be considered when trying to get your content out and read. When talking about the tone, Sleep said, “Because more funny stories were being shared, BuzzFeed UK decided to approach some serious articles with a more comedic tone.” Setting the tone for the website is very crucial because it’s how the publishers and authors see who come back to see their content and which content brings them back to read more.
    I believe that audience engagement and news measurement should have a great relationship and “Engaging Communities: Content and Conversation” by Joy Mayer makes some excellent points. Editor Grant Barrett of “Voices of San Diego” was working on a six month project about a man who was a refugee who was deaf and couldn’t speak, “To make sure that people who would be most interested and affected found the piece, VOSD reached out to refugee and refugee rights groups, the deaf community, and the public services community.” To make sure he had his audience engaged, he went out and reached out to multiple organizations to make sure to get as much as background information to make his article strong and relatable. This is a great example of a topic that doesn’t get much light, and since many people don’t know much about refugee’s, they will most likely read about it since it’s something new to them.


  5. Audience engagement is an important part of journalism. What you write as a journalist is an important part as well because when you don’t provide content that attracts readers/useful to readers , then they won’t care to comment or feel the need to. Readers who read posts from journalists, typically comment on posts that stand out them or post that provide useful news. Like stated in previous posts, bloggers, journalist, and writers can blog and post as much as they want, but the moment their topic is dull, uninteresting, or unappealing with little to no comments, that honestly what was the point of posting it. the statement ” if no one is reading than what’s the point” is a statement i strongly agree with. The MAIN reason i think journalists write is to share their views to an audience, BUT i feel that they want to interest their readers, engage in a conversation with them, read the feedback, and even agree to disagree with others. Briggs talks about the fact that when you become a journalist, it stresses measuring your information and finding your information and sharing everything with your audience while engaging and connecting with them. There should definitely be some sort of connection going on with you and your audience


  6. I definitely feel that building an audience is crucial when blogging or writing for a news organization because, as a blogger, my goal is to build the conversation about whatever topic I’m writing about as much as I possibly can. Granted, I may not be a full-time blogger or a good blogger for that matter, but my whole point for writing blogs is to receive feedback and other perspectives by my classmates because their comments are important to me.

    However, I feel that there needs to be a topic that is relevant, significant, and eye-catching for blog/news and it needs to be a universally attractive topic to build an audience. So, for example, not many people would probably be interested in where Jennifer Lopez buys her groceries. Therefore, in my opinion, the topics that are being discussed and displayed for everyone to see need to be universally attractive, significant and relevant in order to build an audience and a conversation.


  7. I think that news measurement and audience engagement is a relationship that is connected, like a hand in a glove. Reader interactions have become more and more important for audiences, therefore also more important for the news agencies. This “new” interactive reader have also created more ways for journalists to gather news, for example crowdsourcing that we talked about earlier in the semester.

    Audience engagement is of course really important, maybe the most important factor, but all stories can’t be purely based on number of clicks, views or etc. Just because the story about the “#kyliejennerlipchallenge” will get more clicks, doesn’t mean that the story is more important than a small restaurant fire for example. As a journalist you are the news gatekeeper, meaning you, along with your newsroom, are a deciding factor of what should be in the news picture. So it can be a tricky part selecting stories to cover, you need those high volume click stories, but if you simply focus on those kind of stories a lot of stories that don’t necessarily get that many clicks, but may impact the community in a bigger way long term may get cut out, and that’s not good journalistic work. So I think it’s all about finding a fair balance by giving the audience what it wants and what it needs.


  8. I think that to some extent there is a relationship between news measurement and audience engagement when it comes to journalism. As already mentioned in some of the comments above, the question of “if no one is reading what’s the point” is a critical one when it comes to journalism. After all, journalism is meant for the masses- its meant to inform and to inspire change. And with that audience engagement becomes crucial. Writers and bloggers can promote their work as much as they want, but at the end of the day its the audience that really decides the fate of the story. The engagement of the audience- sharing stories, word of mouth, commenting- is what really drives a story to success. That is why one is important to the other. The BuzzFeed article really shows an understanding of this relationship as it gives tips on how to best maximize engagement with the audience by providing tips such as “directing content” to the appropriate platforms or adding visuals to draw people in.

    That being said, I think that audience engagement is really the most important factor and a lot of that has to do with not only reaching the appropriate target segment, but also providing content in a way that is attractive and useful for the reader. If its not something the reader is interested in, if its not something that really adds some value to the reader’s life, the reader will most likely not be interested, therefore the story won’t get as much engagement or attention. So while there is an important relationship, I think audience engagement is the most important driving factor.


  9. This week’s topic reminded me of a question I once asked a poet who was speaking in one of my classes: “How do you know when your poem is done and ready to be read?” For writers, whether they be poets or bloggers, there is something very nerve-racking about sharing your work. Admittedly, there are some weeks when I hope that no one reads my post because I’m so insecure about it. Other weeks, I’m so proud of what I’ve done, I want everyone to see it as long as I don’t have to self-promote. Joy Mayer made two specific comments that spoke to these instances. The first, in addressing my desire for blog obscurity: “If a journalism tree falls in a forest and no one hears it, does it do any good?” And, the second, to my desire for people to find my posts for themselves: “With so much content out there, hoping isn’t a sound strategy—it’s an excuse.”

    The first quote was particularly striking. While low readership may spare me some scrutiny, what then is the point? If we look at journalism as having the obligation to tell the truth and keep authority in check (which I do believe it does), then certainly receiving attention for doing so is important. Briggs writes, “An informed discussion of journalism today must include an awareness of new distribution models, efficiency, and marketability.” Mayer and Drew Sleep address this point directly, offering ways to really engage readers. I found Sleep’s analysis interesting in its discussion of generational differences in online readership. His note that 00s nostalgia pieces did better than 90s nostalgia pieces, in accordance with the age groups most active on social media, made perfect sense. It also made me consider the audience that might be interested in my own blog, and if I was effectively reaching them.

    However, while I do think that knowing and reaching an audience is very important in news measurement, I am hesitant to attribute all of a story’s success to how many individuals read it. Kim Kardashian allegedly “broke the Internet” with her nude Paper Magazine cover, but I wouldn’t necessarily call that story one of great news importance. This may be purely subjective–according to Joy, Sleep, and Briggs, the extent to which readers were interested in this story, may instantly qualify it as a great story–but I am still skeptical.


  10. When it comes to blogging or online news reporting, audience interaction is essential. Without readership, what does your blog exist for? This is why it’s so important to build a relationship with your audience and to engage on a regular basis. This week’s reading even suggested tailoring content directly to the interests of your readers in order to better capture their attention. According to Sleep, BuzzFeed is a success story of this and it works extremely well for promoting their articles among their audience. However, as Mayer expressed in “Engaging Communities: Content and Conversation,” it is also incredibly important to continue to report with objectivity. Even though you may get topic ideas from the interests of your readers, that does not mean that you should also report what they want to hear. After all, that’s not what journalism is.


  11. I’m thinking that news measurement and audience engagement does go hand in hand. In Briggs Chapter 11, he talks about that in the news room being able to reflect any acquired information or skills is helpful in sharing the information further with others and keeping track of everything and staying on top is the only way to make sure nothing important is being missed. In the first article, it had mentioned the book, The Elements of Journalism and how it emphasizes a journalist obligation to their audience. I actually am familiar with that book and it is very true. Being a journalist stresses finding and measuring your information and data and sharing everything truthfully and to its full extent to your audience while engaging them in a sort of means of communication where you will know that they are learning from you. There is a further relationship because your audience or readers have the capability of connecting to what you have to share and can further ask questions as well to learn even more.


  12. Building audiences is one of the most important parts of blogging and online news reporting, in my opinion. Having the ability to connect what you are write to the people who read the content is how you build a community and a readership basis. In news measurement you need to be able to track, measure and adapt (Briggs Chapter 11). Newsrooms need to track everything they do in order to see how many posts you are doing, how many videos, and most importantly did your audience grow during the month. I think there is definitely a relationship between news measurement and audience engagement, they work hand and hand. I have often heard that people who write for news organizations and get a lot of views on their news stories/posts will get paid more because they are pulling an audience and are more valuable to the company. But the first article points out how journalists still need to remain objective and not completely be apart of the community they build. I agree with this, it’s important to write fairly and objectively unless it is an opinion piece. Buzzfeed has done an amazing job at connecting news and it’s audience as it easy to share pieces with other people and get the gist of what they are talking about quickly.


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