OnPoint by Keith Ng

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OnPoint: H4x0rs and You

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  • john Drinnan, in reply to James George,

    If that's your real name - congratulations for having the courage of your convictions

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    It's not the truth, it's your opinion. I think it's a glib and poorly-founded generalisation, but you're entitled to it.

    +1.

    This is a surprisingly rancorous discussion.

    In an attempt to add something new, can I commend theconversation.edu as really welcome media development. It's the joint effort of a half dozen or more Australian universities that neatly bridges the blog/amateur v MSM/journo divide by publishing academics on topical news issues like hacking for example.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2273 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Paul Williams,

    I commend theconversation.edu as really welcome media development

    Same. Have been enjoying their Twitter feed. Firm commitment to standards doesn't prevent strong advocacy pieces either.

    A recent one on the conseqences for fact-impaired radio jock Alan Jones and his employer seems relevant to this thread. Imagine if our regulator had the balls to demand similar for Lhaws and his ilk?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Theconversation looks great. Too much reading!
    Australia could give us a few heads up in journalism and broadcasting. ABC provides some standards for television. (I bet the radio is good too- but so is RNZ.) There's a robust blogosphere (here too) but also ventures like Crikey, which I don't subscribe to, but if I were in Aussie I would like a shot.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2110 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    I've been absent from NZ for too long to really know how NZ broadcasting compares with Australian but certainly the existence of ABC television is a major point of difference (SBS too - Russell and others, you'd love Rockwiz). ABC radio is superb, but not better than RNZ (except there's more off it with both national and state-based frequencies). Scale and the commitment of public funds for a genuinely public broadcaster does mean good local content - news and other content (that said, my seven year old loves Kaitangata Twist which ABC broadcasts).

    Firm commitment to standards doesn't prevent strong advocacy pieces either.

    Indeed, that's another element of its appeal. The capacity, by design I'm guessing, to have strong debate both between authors and through comments. The serialised pieces are also good.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2273 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to dave crampton,

    Perhaps some of you could try going to work at 8:30am, coming up with a story idea, writing the story and having 500 words done by 10am by which time you are working on the next story,.

    I havent yet commented to any extent on this thread.
    I will base a short comment on my personal experience earlier this year.
    Journalists can put a deliberately wrong skew on a story.
    I write a quarterly column for my tribe’s magazine “Te Karaka”. 2 issues ago, I wrote about my love for Okarito, and the fact that I will be selling my home & leaving the place I’ve lived in for over 38 years – because the human population
    has changed, and the nature of the community has changed (among other salient factors.) A journalist at the “Grey Evening Star” was alerted to the column, spoke to me over the ‘phone for less than 8 minutes, and her piece appeared in the next edition – and was promptly copied by quite a number of SI newspapers (none of which ever got in contact with me.) She used the words “is leaving ’nasty Okarito’” – which occur NOWHERE in my column. The Grey Star editor (whom I know) gave her the additional, totally wrong, info that I had been ‘briefly employed as a proof-reader on the Grey Star.’

    Actually, I was a card-carrying journalist on the Grey Star
    for a year&a half.*


    I have been interviewed literally hundreds of times – mainly MSM, but also radio & tv. Journalists have made a lot of errors in the articles I’ve read or viewed – but that snide little ‘news’ item takes the sick-up cake.

    *Started work at 8am, had to have your story/ies filed by noon (or preferably waaay before), and filled your afternoon work with interviews or your round-writeups…

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Littlewood,

    How are journalists trained these days? Is it an undergrad degree or diploma? Could the quality of journalism be improved if it were postgrad and would be journalists did a degree in something else first?

    I can only speak for myself, but I did the postgraduate course (Grad Dip.J) at Canterbury University (better known for years as "Jim Tully's course") in 2008, and that course had been running in that format (or something similar) since 1987 (it wasn't held this year due to a number of, largely earthquake-related, factors, and will return next year). Massey University's is also a GradDipJ.

    Here's a good website with the list of available academic courses in journalism in NZ, as you can see it's a mix of polytechnic and University options.

    http://www.journalismtraining.co.nz/NZJTO/Careers/Journalism-Schools

    My honours degree was in the Arts (English Literature and German), I'm not sure what percentage of the journalism DipGrads held arts degrees, (at a glance), but I wouldn't be surprised if it were a majority or pluarity.

    Today, Tomorrow, Timaru • Since Jan 2007 • 449 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Islander,

    Surely starting work at 8am was the easy bit? Finding something that had happened in Greymouth in the past 24hrs that didn't reflect badly on the advertisers, your own or the editor's friends and family would be the hard bit.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Finding something that had happened in Greymouth in the past 24hrs that didn’t reflect badly on the advertisers, your own or the editor’s friends and family would be the hard bit.

    With all due respect, you have no understanding of smalltown journalism what so-ever-

    Y’know, the GES was locally fearless: it was privately owned. Had a distinct leftish drive(coal mining shareholders) and didnt give a fuck about editor’s family/friends/people who could direct matters but were easily over-ridden:-the advertisers had GES or the tiny Hokitika Guardian-which was genuine local-area competition- and nothing else.

    And you obviously have NO idea how much goes on in small towns
    – which is of huge interest for all of us small – area- dwellers-
    0r how omnivourously we are interested in…us.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Pete Sime, in reply to Islander,

    how omnivourously we are interested in...us.

    Quite. I was looking through the Grey River Argus on Papers Past. The outbreak of World War One merited page 5 coverage.

    Dunedin • Since Apr 2008 • 171 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Islander,

    Rich of Observationz-

    you actually dont know ANYTHING about small-town papers, do you?

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Pete Sime,

    HEH!
    A well-known West Coast joke - "We have repeatedly told the Kaiser-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Matthew Littlewood,

    Here’s a good website with the list of available academic courses in journalism in NZ, as you can see it’s a mix of polytechnic and University options.

    http://www.journalismtraining.co.nz/NZJTO/Careers/Journalism-Schools

    Thanks, Matthew. I’m reading, digesting, wondering…

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Caleb D'Anvers, in reply to Pete Sime,

    how omnivourously we are interested in...us.

    Quite. I was looking through the Grey River Argus on Papers Past. The outbreak of World War One merited page 5 coverage.

    Totally. PapersPast has been an amazing resource for opening up that forgotten (and surprisingly outward-facing) world of print, and there's some interesting stuff being written about it at the moment. Tony Ballantyne, in particular, has been producing fascinating analyses of the role of local newspapers in forging communities in 19th-century Otago: e.g. Reading the Newspaper in Colonial Otago and Books and Civic Culture in Milton.

    London SE16 • Since Mar 2008 • 482 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Surely starting work at 8am was the easy bit? Finding something that had happened in Greymouth in the past 24hrs that didn’t reflect badly on the advertisers, your own or the editor’s friends and family would be the hard bit.

    I’ve edited the abuse out of Islander’s responses but I do feel bound to observe that this is a glib and patronising comment.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Rowan Atkinson supporting the idea that you should be allowed to insult someone.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Ross Mason,

    Rowan Atkinson supporting the idea that you should be allowed to insult someone.

    The question of whether insults should be subject to legal strictures is quite, quite separate from the question of how Russell chooses to moderate discourse in his own online space.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Islander,

    Quarto master...

    the GES was locally fearless

    My uncle Andy used to work there,
    I still have the lead slugs he gave
    us kids with our names on...

    the ability, at age 9,
    to reproduce your name
    from a machine artifact,*
    stirs something...

    ...something I have yet
    to satisfactorily assuage.


    * well, with a stamp pad, and paper...
    a regular stationery engine-driver!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I'm sorry to have offended anyone, I'm sure that the journos of Greytown do a conscientious job.

    In fact, I think that pretty much everyone in NZ comes to work and feels that they are doing a decent and useful job. That includes my own field of IT.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Hmmm....in my usual way of dumping things into threads I obviously forgot - again - to say the link was a "current affair" rather than it being a shot across the Russell's bow. Aplogies.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    I'm sorry to have offended anyone, I'm sure that the journos of Greytown do a conscientious job.

    In fact, I think that pretty much everyone in NZ comes to work and feels that they are doing a decent and useful job. That includes my own field of IT.

    So what would be the IT equivalent of confusing Greymouth with Greytown?

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    So what would be the IT equivalent of confusing Greymouth with Greytown?

    Trusting autocomplete to choose your variable name.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Writing code that orders a metric fucktonne of coal in place of a dozen frocks and a box of shoes. It's <strike> Monday </strike> Tuesday, all my inputs require QA.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Corp PR,

    Some personal observations on media trends: While the landscape is rapidly changing, I think paid media is still the main channel for delivery of news and current affairs in NZ.

    As in many things, you get what you pay for. As a few people including Russell have pointed out the increasing disconnect between corporate media and the advertising revenue that is essential to pay for quality journalism is a problem.
    Media is a business that is as affected as any other sector by the pressures of globalisation, digitisation, commercialisation, commoditisation, competition etc. and is in transition to a new age; the problem is that it is not a good thing for any of us if media businesses cannot afford to pay for the time needed to develop quality, well researched, journalism. And we should be prepared to pay for it so that the financial model works and quality journalism can be sustained.

    Many current financial models for media are unsustainable. Business drivers are largely economic and based on market consumption patterns – ratings, circulation, advertising revenue; online hits etc. – we haven’t totally figured out yet a business model that rewards quality ahead of consumption – which as we all know is not always the same thing (although can be).

    The lines are blurring. Corporate media is now news, entertainment, advertising, public, private, online, print, free to air TV, pay TV, radio, social media, professional media, op-ed contributions from ‘non-journalists’ such as academics. People get their news from many different sources now, blogs, newspapers, radio, TV, social media. These changing media consumption patterns in society are having real consequences on corporate media – i.e. how do they get revenue from it?

    Media ownership is a powerful factor - but I really don’t know what is the perfect model for who should own it – public or private – what is the best mix – can it be both?

    New Zealand has a thriving online news community, PA being a great example, and a media and politically savvy blogging community that are eating away at paid media - The rise of ‘citizen-generated’ media has only added to the business pressures on corporate media. Some of this online community offers very high-quality writing, news and analysis (the crème always rises to the top) and some just offer a bunch of people shouting at each other in a race to the bottom.
    The sources of media content are also rapidly changing (PR, lobbying, advertorial, promotions, blogs, Twitter).

    Media businesses must take some responsibility in cultivating a quality news environment. The flipside is that because media is largely consumer driven, it is also the consumer's responsibility to avoid, and not reward, media product that is poor, and to reward good journalism by being willing to pay for it.

    By global standards NZ has a free media environment and a lot of great journalists. Vast majority of journalists want to do a great job – that’s why they work in such a challenging industry. But any business model that has lost its main source of revenue and is incentivised to grow reader or viewer numbers in order to attract advertising (that is usually aimed at a small slice of the overall demographics) in a world where people have a million sources of free news, opinion and information, has a major challenge on its hands.

    Since Oct 2012 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • andin, in reply to Corp PR,

    The flipside is that because media is largely consumer driven, it is also the consumer’s responsibility to avoid, and not reward, media product that is poor, and to reward good journalism by being willing to pay for it.

    So how does that work when it comes to TV news? Which has been going downhill for a while now. It cant be all the consumers fault or responsibility. The spoken language it is presented in has slowly been bowdlerised so as not to upset the delicate souls amongst us. I think it gets to the point of irrelevance pretty quickly and then just carries on relentlessly, mind numbingly in fact. And presenters becoming celebrities just reinforces how pointless it has become. Yes its the "old model" but it still has a reach and influence which, depending on your POV..... well I dont want to go there.

    Media ownership is a powerful factor – but I really don’t know what is the perfect model for who should own it – public or private – what is the best mix – can it be both?

    Editorial control not dictated by the owners might be an aspect to look at. Not just the money, that can only lead to disaster IMO

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1890 posts Report Reply

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