Despite the doom and gloom of the current media environment, I believe that it’s an exciting time for journalists…to have the world at your fingertips, what an amazing gift the internet has given us all. The internet has revolutionised the way journalists gather and distribute news. Information has been made more accessible through search engines like Google and the internet has allowed news to be shared almost instantaneously through social media websites like Twitter and Facebook.
To further explore these new trends in journalism and connect with journalists around Australia, Google will be hosting their first Google for Media Day in Sydney on November 5th. On the Official Google Australia Blog, there is a full agenda and registration form for journalists who would like to participate.
This free day aims to inspire journalists and producers to make the most of Google’s tools in their news gathering and storytelling. Speakers will include Google engineers and experts from around the world in a series of talks, panel discussions and workshops.
These workshops will be targeted at at news professionals of all backgrounds and will cover trends in data journalism, video and social media. The media day will also give journalists the opportunity to learn directly from Google experts and have hands on training using some of Google’s most helpful tools such as:
This tool helps you refine searches. During the workshop experts will teach you tips and tricks to help you become a better Google searcher.
This is a relatively new tool that allows you to retrieve search data to gain useful insights about search trends on Google. Experts will show participants how they can use this tool for news gathering.
Google Fusion Tables lets you discover, visualize, expand and share data tables, charts and timelines. At the workshop you will look at the trends and innovation in data journalism around the world and how publications like The Guardian and The New York use data journalism for effective visual storytelling. Participants will also be given the opportunity to start building their own visualisations using related tools such as Google Refine, Maps and Geo APIs.
Google Refine is a power tool for data management. It allows users who are working with messy data, to clean it up, transform it from one format into another. In the workshop Google experts will show journalists how they can use this tool when creating data visualisations.
The Geo API app is a tool which gives you instant access to billions of data points across hundreds of sources. During the workshop, Google Map developers will demonstrate how journalists can incorporate this tool in their storytelling.
Google Earth is a tool that enables users to to zoom into any location and has become a top mapping choice for broadcast professionals worldwide. The application allows journalists to access satellite imagery of the entire world, hundreds of 3D cities, and archives of historical imagery, all available for media use with Google’s free broadcast license. In the interactive workshop, participants will be shown how to build standard animations and videos, some KML editing and will answer any licensing and permissions questions.
Youtube is a remarkable video-sharing website which has allowed citizens and journalists alike to produce and broadcast their own video content to the world. Google claims that by using YouTube, newsrooms can attract their share of an 800M-strong monthly YouTube audience, and use more and more video to bring their storytelling to life. In the workshop, experts will discuss best practice for news organizations working with YouTube, copyright tools to help manage content online, and how leading newsrooms around the world are using YouTube to attract new audiences to their reporting.
Google+ is a unique social networking site realeased by Google last year. It’s most popular feature has been the Hangouts, which allow people to chat with other users face-to-face-to-face around the world. It was made famous after President Obama answered questions about the State of the Union posed by citizens in the first-ever completely virtual interview from the White House in January this year. Locally, The Age recently brought Julia Gillard together with voters via Hangout. During the workshop, speakers will discuss how media outlets around the world are using it to create content and connect with their audiences. There will also be step-by-step instructions on how to set-up a Hangout and stream it on your own homepage or YouTube channel.
Should you be interested in attending Google Media Day, you can register your details via this Google form. However, due to limited space not all that apply will be able to attend.
For those who cannot attend you will still join in the conversation by following #Google4Media via Twitter or Google+. I for one think this will be an event worth following and commend Google on their efforts to assist Australian journalists to learn new and improved news gathering and storytelling techniques.
For those who attend or follow this event on Twitter, I would love to hear what you think!
‘You’re Invited: Newsgathering and storytelling at Google for Media Day [Official Google Australia Blog]