Media Insider: Viral Content in the 19th Century, Interviewing Tips and This Week’s Media Moves

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round up of journalism, blogging and freelancing stories from the week.

Photo by jsklz used under CC by 2.0

Photo by jsklz used under CC by 2.0

Listicles, Aggregation, and Content Gone Viral: How 1800s Newspapers Prefigured Today’s Internet (NiemanLab)

Ryan Cordell, a Northeastern University professor, recently spoke at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology about viral content of the 19th century. Writing made up of lists or “listicles,” most popular on websites like BuzzFeed, were a common practice for historic newspapers. Many of these publications consisted primarily of content from other newspapers too, acting more as aggregators than writers of original content.

Cordell also points out that the reprinting of news stories, poetry and fiction ultimately initiated the idea of “going viral.” The full 94-minute talk about Cordell’s research through the Library of Congress’s collection of newspapers is available online.

General Election 2015: Learning From Hyperlocal Sites Across the UK (David Higgerson’s Blog)

UK journalist and publisher David Higgerson offers a unique perspective on the UK elections and how hyperlocal news sites demonstrated impact in their 2015 coverage. Higgerson offers “10 ideas for journalists elsewhere to consider,” including looking at the personal tone and deep understanding that comes with local journalism. Hyperlocal sites also provided fresh candidate profiles and distinctive approaches to data. This piece offers an outlook that journalists covering the upcoming elections in the states should consider in order to stand out.

‘Don’t be boring’ and Six Other Interviewing Tips from Jacqui Banaszynski (Poynter)

Veteran journalist Jacqui Banaszynski offers 7 interview tips on how to draw out the best information from your subjects in order to write great stories. Banaszynski, who won the Pulitzer for feature writing in 1988 for her story “AIDS in the Heartland,” offers advice such as “Ask about senses, not emotions” and to “Use your notebook as a tool.” It is a great read for anyone looking for in-depth information on the art of interviewing.

Quiz: Are You a True Grammar Expert? (Contently)

This is a fun interactive quiz made up of 15 questions that test your grammar astuteness. It asks questions on apostrophes, tests your knowledge on common homonyms and the proper placement of commas, among more challenging grammar issues. Do you dare take the challenge?

Media Moves and News for Week of May 18 (PR Newswire’s Media Moves)

Media Moves keeps you up to date with who went where in the world of media. This week’s edition features multiple additions at The Washington Post and The Washington Examiner, as well as a few moves at CNN.

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Stephanie de Ruiter is an audience researcher with PR Newswire keeping up with media moves throughout the nation with a focus on blogs and online publications.

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