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Re-cap of “Verify your news in a digital Age” weekend chatter

The following post is written by our AAJA Asia member, Yunita Ong. 
Even as new-age digital tools emerge, the media industry mustn’t forget the value of good old-fashioned breaking news reporting in combating the threat of fake news.
That was a key takeaway at “Verify Your News in a Digital Age,” a panel organized by AAJA-Asia on 28 Oct 2017 held at Google’s APAC office in Singapore. Speakers included Samanthi Dissanayake, Asia Editor of BBC News Online; Timothy Go, host and editor of tech360.tv and Irene Jay Liu, news lab lead at Google APAC.
It was moderated by Mike Raomanachai, a senior reporter at Voice TV, and is the second event in AAJA-Asia’s weekend chatter series. Attendees were also treated to an hour-long Google workshop with tools and techniques about how to verify their news.
Attendees learned that “fake news” can really mean many things, running the gamut from information from those who meant no harm but were misinformed, or those with malicious intent knowingly sharing false information. The issue of trust in the media takes on its unique dimension in Asia because of the lower trust in the media here – Japan tops in the region with just a 43 percent score according to this year’s Reuters Institute Digital News Report 2017 Chat apps here are also a powerful medium through which fake news can spread.
Verification is a lot of work, and most people reading the news may not have the mental bandwidth or may be too busy to process and interrogate what they’ve read. That’s why it’s the job of the journalist to do so – and one rule of thumb is: if it’s too good to be true, maybe it isn’t. It’s human nature to confirm what you already believe in.
Those at the session urged fellow journalists to always verify by double-sourcing while paying attention to the context surrounding information one may get from sources. Holding off on publishing unverified news without official notification even if other news outlets are reporting it, such as in the case of a celebrity death, can also gain the news outlet long-term credibility.
There’s a fine balance, though – thanks to the digital age and how ordinary people can post about what they’re experiencing. it would be a disservice to readers to hold back on publishing events like a train breakdown or power outage.
Not all news is reported straight – those that have to have a point of view, such as reviewers, have to be upfront and declare as such to the consumer, while trying as much as possible to have fair reporting by keeping a China wall between sales and editorial, for instance.
Attendees were also urged to check out Firstdraftnews.com, a project of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center, for tools and techniques for online verification.

AAJA-Singapore learns the value of using Google’s tools for reporting

For a journalist in the digital age, sifting through copious amount of online data is an unavoidable part of the job. But it doesn’t always have to be the most tedious part of filing your story. Google can help! One of the world’s most popular search engines provides extra tools streamlined for the media.

The Singapore sub-chapter of AAJA-Asia recently held its first joint event with Google Singapore, “How to harness Google effectively for your reporting,” to highlight some of these search tips to journalists and other media professions. From tapping into resources like the ‘Advanced Search’ functions to filtering out for file types in your search results, to verifying data and images through the ‘Image Search’ function, Google can quickly become a journalist’s best friend. Learning the tools that are readily available at your fingertips goes hand-in-hand with staying sharp in the digital age

Those attending the workshop also learned that Google works beyond supporting existing stories; it’s a powerful tool for discovering original content, by exploring Google’s readily available public data. With simple query terms like “smartphone vs. android”, the presenter from Google quickly whipped up extensive visualizations of search data from around the world. In a couple clicks, we could compare how countries from around the world have searched for android and iPhone related pages, and compare global trends. However, it is also important as a journalist to recognize the selection effect at play: In some countries, Google isn’t necessarily the go-to search engine.

The next presenter from Youtube gave a workshop on optimizing the video-sharing platform for the media. Whether you’re contributing to a company channel or establishing your own brand, these are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • — Become a subject matter expert through generating and curating content. All digital storytellers aim to create engaging content, but if you’re on the go, you can easily share content that you’ve curated, or re-release your previous content under a slightly different packaging (changing headlines, thumbnails, etc.)

  • — Interact with your audience. Cross promote your various social media platforms (Twitter, Google Hangouts, etc.) to give your audience options for interacting with you.

  • — Make use of your analytics. By knowing that the average YouTube user drops off the first 15 seconds, you can be a more mindful storyteller and craft your story accordingly.

There’s plenty more Google tools for media available here: http://www.google.com/get/mediatools/

Seminar: How to harness Google effectively for your reporting

March 21, 2015

10:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Google, 8 Marina View, Asia Square Tower 1, Singapore 018960

Need sources for a breaking news story? Looking for a trend story? Wondering how to build an online profile?

Join us for a workshop conducted by Google, in collaboration with AAJA-Asia (Singapore), on how you can effectively harness Google to enhance your research and reporting skills. More details to follow.

The workshop will be followed by a tour of Google’s premises.

Continue reading Seminar: How to harness Google effectively for your reporting

AAJA-Asia Uplink: Lessons from the field

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AAJA-Asia will be hosting its first ever multi-city online journalism event on Nov. 29. Two panels with several top speakers and experienced journalists from across Asia will meet, in person and online, to talk shop. Find out where people are meeting in your city and come join the discussion!

LOCATIONS

Tokyo — Waseda University (1-104 Totsukamachi, Shinjuku. Building No. 3, Room 704. Details and map here)/2 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.
Hong Kong — Digital Media Lab, Eliot Hall, University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam Road)/ 1 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.
Seoul — Divine (736-9 Hannam-dong Yongsan-gu, 2nd floor. Details and map here)/2 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.
Hanoi — Bloomberg News (Sentinel Building, 41A Ly Thai To, Suite 522, Hoan Kiem District, 84-4-3938 8940)/12 p.m. to 2:45 p.m.
Singapore — PWC Building, 8 Cross Street, #25-06/07, Singapore 048424

SATURDAY, NOV. 29, 2014

CLICK FOR REGISTRATION FORM

FREE for AAJA members/co-host university students. US$10 per city for non-members.

PROGRAM

[Keynote panel] Confessions from a Veteran Journalist – 60 min.

At this Google Hangout panel connecting speakers in three cities – Hong Kong, Seoul and Tokyo – seasoned reporters and editors from top news organizations will offer their insights on lessons learned through their experiences.

What mistakes have these top journalists made and how did they recover from them? What advice can they give his/her 10-, 20-year younger self? How can journalists be successful and survive in an increasingly lean newsroom environment?

Speakers will each give a short talk. A 30-min. Q&A session will follow.

Speakers: Elaine Kurtenbach (AP, Tokyo), Kurt Achin (Freelance, Seoul), Zeb Eckert (Bloomberg News, HK)

Moderator: Ken Moritsugu (AP, Tokyo)

[Panel 2] Reporting Tools You Can Use – 60 min. 

What’s the latest in news collecting and verifying information? This multi-city, interactive panel will look at the apps and online tools reporters can use. Find out what the next, next Twitter or LinkedIn is, for gathering story ideas and reaching out to sources.

Each speaker will introduce a tool or an app. (5 minutes each.) A 30-min. session follows with other AAJA member cities chiming in and sharing the latest app or tool used in their cities.

Speakers: ClassDo, Chiew Chung (ClassDo, Tokyo). Twitter, Olivia Rosenman (Storyful, Hong Kong). WordPress, Darcy Christ (University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong). Independent Media Outlet Creation, Tae-hoon Lee (Korea Observer, Seoul) & Steve Miller (Asia News Weekly, Seoul). Banjo, Jason Gatewood (NextMedia Animation, Taipei). Deep Web Search, Oanh Ha (Bloomberg News, Hanoi)

Moderator: Zela Chin (TVB, Hong Kong)

AAJA members speaking at Digital Journalism World Conference in Singapore

AAJA National President Paul Cheung and AAJA-Asia President Ramy Inocencio are among the speakers at this year’s first annual Digital Journalism World Conference in Singapore. Paul is the global interactive editor for the Associated Press, and Ramy is a senior producer at Wall Street Journal Digital.

AAJA member in Thailand Asha Philips, Asia Pacific bureau chief at Storyful, is also listed as a speaker.

The event, held on Oct. 7-8 at M Hotel Singapore, will have several big names, including keynote speakers Robert Bole, of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, and Lisa McLeod, of the Financial Times. The program includes panels on news gathering, news distribution and “tools of change.”

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AAJA is listed as a supporting association.

Apply for the Asia Journalism Fellowship in Singapore

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The Asia Journalism Fellowship is open for applications now until October 25.

The fellowship brings around 15 journalists from across Asia to Singapore for three months, March 17 to June 6 in 2014. Supported by Temasek Foundation and Nanyang Technological University, AJF fully sponsors fellow’s participation.

Fellows are based at NTU’s Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information.

The program allows fellows to take part in seminars and workshops designed to sharpen professional skills and deepen their understanding of key trends shaping their profession. Eased of their usual deadline pressures, fellows also get to work on an independent project and pursue their intellectual interests, guided by professors and other experts on and off campus.

Visit www.ajf.sg for details.

Career workshop in Singapore hosted by Jane Horan

Jane Horan, who spoke at a leadership seminar at the New.Now.Next Media Conference at the University of Hong Kong on May 25, is holding a workshop in Singapore on June 6.

The workshop is based on her research with women combined with creative thinking and practical tips.  

The working world has changed, its accelerated and more complex than ever. Successful Career Navigation is an art, something that must be learned as sooner or later everyone faces a career opportunity, challenge or setback. Managing your career is no longer an option, it’s a must!

More on the workshop and how to register here.