Hi. My name is Adam.

Suggested list of twitter users to follow

Posted in daily news, Eastern Iowa, Iowa City, social media, social networking, twitter by adambsullivan on December 2, 2009

I’ve organized my favorite twitter users into my primary niches so you can easily determine which ones would be helpful for you to follow.

Iowa City:
@DrDaily is The Daily Iowan’s personable web presence. He’s modeled after The Chicago Tribune’s @ColonelTribune. (Full disclosure: I’m Dr. Daily’s primary muse).
@bergus is one of my primary web/journalism mentors. In addition to being a great media and food critic, Nick offers lots of fun commentary about Eastern Iowa.
@thebstiles is, without exaggeration, probably the very best Hawkeye football reporter in the nation right now.
@hidama and @sebhar are delightfully social and exceedingly friendly…usually.
@seanathompson is an IC native, UI employee, runner, Hawkeye sports fan, and all around good guy. Sean knows what’s going on; he’s very involved in the community.

Journalism nerds:
@bergus gets double-mentioned. He’s one of my primary web/journalism mentors. In addition to being a great media and food critic, Nick offers lots of fun commentary about Eastern Iowa.
@stevebuttry is The Gazette’s 3C’s innovation coach. In addition to “getting” how communication works, Steve touches on the business side of the news business.
@mashable is seldom more than a feed of headlines from Mashable, but it still offers useful info on social networking and how it pertains to news.
@ryansholin is the Director of News Innovation at Publish2. He knows a lot about journalism innovation, but isn’t out of touch with regular people like most newsies who know as much as he does. Ryan is also very accessible; he’s responded to my tweets more than once.
@10000words does a great job of aggregating lots of the hot topics in the journalism discussion.
@NYT_JenPreston is The New York Time’s Social-Media Editor. She doesn’t have all the answers, but she does a decent job of collaborating/discussing with other twitter users.

Weekly email: Be cognisant of what medium best conveys what information

Posted in convergence, daily news, The Daily Iowan, twitter by adambsullivan on October 25, 2009

By Adam B Sullivan
Here’s an excerpt of my weekly staff email:

This week’s goal:

Have something with every story: a video, a graphic, a list of related links, audio of your interview. Be cognisant of what medium best conveys what ideas/information — being able to do that will get you a job someday.

This week’s best:
1. Lots of you have really excelled at putting links in your stories. Ops’ Shawn Gude and Justin Sugg stood out this week. They both put useful links in their Point/Counterpoint.
2. Photogs Julie Koehn and David Scrivner did an excellent job shooting and updating from the road this weekend at the Michigan State game.
3. Metro reporter Katie Stinsom did some good live tweeting from the City Council forum last week. Check her out on twitter.
Something from the pros:
Check out these local twitter users:
METRO: Nick Bergus
OPINIONS: John Deeth
ARTS: Don McLeese
SPORTS: Dave Schwartz
TV: Joe Winters
PHOTO: Todd Adamson

Journalism students: How to get a job…someday…maybe

Posted in education, high school, job market, journalism by adambsullivan on October 22, 2009
By Adam B Sullivan

I am delivering a lecture to high school journalism students next week titled “How to get a job…someday…maybe.” In preparation, I solicited tips via facebook and twitter. People mostly said something like “give up on journalism.” But there were also some very useful responses. Here are some of my favorites:

• “Look at skills to develop, rather than careers you want to enter.” — Justin Sugg, Daily Iowan editorial writer

• “Blog. Learn a Web craft. Become an expert at one thing analog and one thing digital.” — Ryan Sholin, Director of News Innovation at Publish2

• “I’d encourage students be open, social & entrepreneurial. May not get journalism jobs, but will be employable.” — Patrick Thornton, editor of beatblogging.org

• “My advice to journalism students: Elevate your career: http://bit.ly/3N5nKn Build your digital profile: http://bit.ly/ApePG.” — Steve Buttry, Gazette Communications innovation coach

• “Maintain connections with professors/teachers for advice and recommendations, stay connected in general (facebook, twitter, blogging, etc), apply to anything and everything you’re remotely qualified for even if you think it’s above or beneath you, and take a diverse range of classes in school so you’re experienced in different newsroom positions. Oh, and pick a school (like the UI) with a solid student-run paper…Oh, and some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten: It’s your first job, not your last job. it’s amazing how easy it is to forget that.” — Maggie Voss, Daily Iowan/UI alum, graphic designer

• “Learn how communication works online (it’s social); experiment and take risks; become a good writer.” — Nick Bergus, UI multimedia instructor, media blogger

• “Gain experience across the board — print, online, video, design, photo.” — Jason Brummond, former Daily Iowan editor-in-chief

Twitter tips for journalists

Posted in social networking, The Daily Iowan, twitter by adambsullivan on September 2, 2009

1. Gain followers:

• Follow lots of real people: students, local residents, and people who are interested in your area of coverage. Don’t follow lots famous people (@johncmayer and @the_real_shaq) or automated accounts (@nytimes and @andersoncooper).

• Interact with people. Respond to people who way interesting things.

2. Get story ideas:

• Do searches for “Iowa City,” “University of Iowa,” “Hawkeyes,” etc. Tune into what your communities are talking about.

• Read tweets from Iowa Citians. If something is interesting, ask them to tell you more and get their contact information.

• Once you’ve earned a decent number of local followers, ask things like “What should I write about this week?”

3. Promote your stories:

• Good tweets resemble good web heds. Be descriptive and be specific.

• Mention that your story has extras: “Check out this video about…” or “Vote on this poll about…”

4. Be interesting:

• Be a real person. Don’t tweet the same way you write. Let your personality show.

contributing to the discussion, instead of regurgitating what everyone else is saying. You should say things that no other human could say.

Register cartoonist Brian Duffy said he was escorted from building after being laid off.

Posted in economy, Gannett, layoffs, The Des Moines Register by adambsullivan on December 9, 2008

 WHO TV out of Des Moines aired an interview with Brian Duffy (arguably the most prolific newspaper cartoonist in Iowa, if not the nation who was fired last week by The Des Moines Register).

In the interview Duffy said he’s cancelled his subscription to The Register and he blames the newspaper industry’s hardships on corporations (ahem, Gannett) that buy up local papers, but don’t care about local citizens. Most shockingly, Duffy said his bosses at the Register told him to stay put while they retrieved his belongings and escorted him from the premises.

Unfortunately, Duffy’s cruel firing is just one of more than a thousand in the last few days. Nick Bergus (Iowa City journalist/UI instructor) makes sense of what Gannett has done for the news industry:

So besides the huge color weather map that now adorns the back of every newspaper’s A section, what has Gannett offered the newspaper industry that has been so good to it and its shareholders (to the tune of 40 percent profit margins even recently)? A business model that prevents news companys from caring about news quality instead of profits.

– Gannett continues to kill Iowa’s newspapers, Nick Bergus, Dec. 7


Tribune Co. files for bankruptcy

Posted in Bankruptcy, Chicago Tirbune, economy, Gannett, Los Angeles Times, Tribune by adambsullivan on December 8, 2008

The Tribune Company (the media corporation that owns The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy today. The company holds several daily newspapers as well as television and radio outlets. Additionally, Tribune Co. owns The Chicago Cubs and a couple magazines, among other miscellaneous holdings.

The Tribune’s bankruptcy news comes less than a week after Gannett (the world’s largest newspaper holding corporation) announced massive layoffs at numerous newspapers around the country.

Both companies have publicly blamed their dealings on the current economic crisis. However, the years-long trend of sinking print readership and an industry that is slow to change is more likely the leading culprit.


Timeses fronts are strikingly similar

Posted in Los Angeles Times, New York Times, wire photos by adambsullivan on December 5, 2008

No commentary here. I just thought it was notable that The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times (which use the same flag font) ran identical wire photos in the same place.


Nov. 5 souvenir newspapers featuring Barack Obama for sale

Posted in Barack Obama, ebay, news by adambsullivan on December 5, 2008

Front pages from the day after Election Day are being pushed by newspapers nation-wide as a hot holiday item this year.

The New York Times and the Chicago Tribune, among others, are selling reprints of their Nov. 5 editions, including some framed and autographed copies.

Original prints from those days are already going on ebay, but most haven’t been selling for more than about $10.

But let those prints appreciate for a few decades and you could see a some profit. Don’t expect much, though. Even original prints from Dec. 8, 1941 don’t often earn more than $100 on the ebay market.


Speculation that David Yepsen may leave The Des Moines Register

Posted in Brian Duffy, David Yepsen, Gannett, layoffs, The Des Moines Register by adambsullivan on December 4, 2008

David Yepsen, of The Des Moines Register, could be looking to vacate his spot as the paper’s most prolific political columnist.

The Iowa Independent reported two weeks ago that Yepsen is one of three finalists to run the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at the University of Southern Illinois in Carbondale.
Yepsen’s name arguably holds the most weight out of any byline at the Register. The paper’s publisher announced today that its other most influential editorial figure Brian Duffy is one of 41 employees to be laid off.
Presumably, Yepsen and Duffy hold a faithful readership. Losing both could stand to have an impact on the Register’s circulation.

Des Moines Register fires 41 employees

Posted in Brian Duffy, economy, Gannett, layoffs, The Des Moines Register by adambsullivan on December 4, 2008

The Des Moines Register publisher  Laura Hollingsworth announced today that the paper is laying off 41 employees — roughly 7 percent of its workforce — and leaving an additional 15 positions vacant.

In a statement, Hollingsworth blamed recent economic conditions for the terminations. However, earlier this year, Gannett (the media company that publishes 85 daily newspapers including the Register) announced that it would gradually trim 10 percent of its workforce.

The Register is often regarded as one of the premier publications in the Midwest (it maintains the 50th largest circulation in the U.S.). In fact, in the mid-1980’s, only one newspaper (The New York Times) had won more Pulitzer Prizes than Des Moines-based publication. However, since the paper was bought by Gannett in 1985 it has achieved only two Pulitzers.

The layoffs include editorial cartoonist Brian Duffy. Duffy has long been a staple of the Register’s front page. The Register was likely the last newspaper in the nation to feature a daily editorial cartoon on the front page.

Personally, I’m glad I don’t make enough to be fired.