If you are a blogger, hope to see you in Vegas! I am helping organize the workshop below.

Citizen Journalism Workshop

An Exclusive Event at BlogWorld & New Media Expo 2008

Date : Sept. 19, 2008 – 10:00AM – 4:45PM
Location : Las Vegas Convention Ctr.


As blogs take their place as legitimate and respected sources for news, information and analysis, BLOGWORLD & NEW MEDIA EXPO 2008 introduces a new Citizen Journalism Workshop.
There are about 112 millions weblogs worldwide, and while many are blogging for casual reasons or for just a short time, others, especially news and information bloggers, are serious about their blogs’ success in the greater marketplace of ideas.
How can someone “break in” as a news, politics or current events blogger and build a readership, get attention from major bloggers and mass media, and more important perhaps, affect or influence the traditional press agenda, politics, and public opinion?
Traditional news media outlets and bloggers have not always had the best relationship. And yet traditional media has tried to learn from the blogs. In 2008 most mainstream media outlets have blogs, or have their journalists blogging independently.
Now it’s time for the bloggers and other new media journalists to mine the history, tradition and most importantly, the knowledge base of traditional journalists.
In 2008 BLOGWORLD & NEW MEDIA EXPO 2008 is introducing a journalism training certificate workshop for bloggers seeking to deepen and broaden their skills. This workshop focuses on tools and skills news and information bloggers can use to improve the quality, and impact of their blogs.
Bloggers will learn techniques of traditional journalists, including styles of opinion writing, investigative reporting techniques and fact-sourcing, avoiding legal pitfalls, and tips on what makes a post most likely to get one quoted or cited by larger blogs and even the mainstream media.
The instructors for the sessions are accomplished news & information practitioners and educators who have established skills in practical and applied areas of professional journalism training. Participants will receive a Citizen Journalism Certificate and Web icon that will allow them to display their dedication to improving their journalistic skills, and providing them with a distinct brand differentiation from the millions of other news and information bloggers.


10:00AM – 11:15AM
Journalism Content & Style: How to Write & Sound for Impact (CJ1)
[Professor Steve Berry, U. Iowa]
You’ll learn why substance and clarity trump flash and flair in the battle for readers. This session will teach you how to give your writing the power, lively freshness, style and needed to win hearts and minds. We’ll talk about how you can focus your writing to a specific audience, how broadcast, print and website writing differ and why; and how you can use this knowledge to better target specific groups. We’ll also examine the rhythms, structure, and succinctness of superior writing and provide you with examples of how the best writers make people see instead of just read.

11:30AM – 12:45PM

Finding What’s Out There: Searching, Sifting, and Selecting the Best Information Online (CJ2)
[Professor Jay Perkins, LSU]
Finding information isn’t a problem anymore, but avoiding suffocating under all that information can be. Investigative journalists know that government collects a ton of information that most people never find and that Google and Wikipedia can’t touch. This session will look at some of the free, hidden treasure chests of information. You’ll learn how to assemble a background profile on someone from public records, how to trace property, cars, boats and other transactions, and where to go to find people who can help you find these items. You also will learn how to obtain information from local and national federal agencies through the Freedom of Information Act and how to get around the bureaucrats when they bar the front door and refuse to hand over the key. We’ll also talk about fact-checking and source-credibility strategies that will keep you on the path of accuracy–and hopefully, out of someone else’s blog.

2:00PM – 3:15PM

Top 10 Ways to Blog Your Way Into a Lawsuit (CJ3)
[Nina Yablok, Law Office of Nina Yablok]
A fast paced romp through the biggest legal risks that both individual and group bloggers face. Emphasis will be on recognizing problems early, assessing risks, self-help measures to minimize risk, when not to call an attorney, and when to make the call and how to use attorneys efficiently. Detailed legal analysis will not be provided. This is very much a “how to reduce risk in the real world” program.

3:30PM – 4:45PM

Getting Mainstream Media Attention: How to Reach Out to Journalists (CJ4)
[Professor David Perlmutter, U. Kansas]
In a crowded online world, how does an independent blogger stand out and be heard? Being cited, quoted, published or used as a source by mainstream media is a significant way to build a larger and wider audience. We will review the basic selection techniques of how journalists deem someone an “approved source” or expert; we discuss how bloggers can enter the Rolodex of reliable sources for major media. Second, we show ways to have blog content picked up by traditional media, from blasting out a press release to writing and submitting an op-ed to contacting and working with mainstream reporters on stories. Finally, we will look at the ethical issues that affect how your blog is perceived by mainstream media.

Originally posted August 28, 2008 at PolicyByBlog

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