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Online journalism

  • Update: Gawker.com will shut down next week

    Update 2, 18 August 2016, 10.44pm: Univision plans to integrate Gawker's assets into its own pop culture website platform Fusion, according to a tweet. This leaves the future of the company's other websites, including the likes of Lifehacker, Gizmodo and Kotaku, in doubt. .@Univision to acquire brands from @Gawker Media + integrate into @FusionMedia Group https://t.co/TTfgIYQywJ pic.twitter.com/maLC3nONXe — Fusion Media Group (@FusionMedia) August 18, 2016 Update 1, 18 August 2016, 10.20pm: In light of Univision's purchase of the Gawker network, Gawker.com announced some industry-changing news on its front page this evening. The flagship site announced that it will end operations next week. Nick...

  • Keep up to date with Panama Papers leak through Reddit

    Reddit is a pretty incredible source of cat photos, but it can also be used to keep current with some of the world's biggest stories. And there's no bigger story this week than the Panama Papers. The world's biggest data leak, consisting of over 2.6TB of sensitive legal data, is currently causing massive waves online, but it's fairly esoteric. While we rounded up the top ten things to know about the leak, if you're looking for up to the absolute minute current information, Reddit is your best friend. The message board site boasts a Reddit Live update thread, in which it's using...

  • Panama Papers: 10 things you need to know about the world’s biggest ever leak

    The term "Panama Papers" is about to become a major part of the global lexicon. That's because it represents something very big: the largest data leak in human history. The data comes primarily from a Panamanian law firm and forms the basis of what describes itself as "a global investigation into the sprawling, secretive industry of offshore that the world's rich and powerful use to hide assets and skirt rules by setting up front companies in far-flung jurisdictions". Bigger than both Wikileaks and the Snowden files, the investigation has revealed "a cast of characters who use offshore companies to...

  • News24 falls for fake Malema Twitter account

    This is awkward. News24, South Africa's largest online publisher, has quoted a Julius Malema spoof account as coming from the EFF leader himself. The falsely attributed Tweet was used in the news organisation's ongoing coverage of admissions by senior members of the ANC that the Gupta family had offered them positions in cabinet. The tweet was not only included in an article, but also quoted in a headline posted on the News24 site as these tweets by advertising news site Marklives show: .@news24 just fell for parody @Julias_Malema account on their live #gupta #jonas feed Not...

  • Toby Shapshak hands over Stuff Magazine editorship

    Toby Shapshak has handed over the editorial reins at Stuff Magazine South Africa some eight years after launching the magazine in South Africa. Taking his place at the helm of the tech publication is Craig Wilson, who has been Stuff's deputy editor since November 2014, a position he previously held at Techcentral for two years. At the same time, Brett Venter has been appointed digital editor and will oversee the publication’s website and digital channels. Jon Tullett, formerly of ITWeb, joins the team as associate editor. All three appointments are effective from 1 March 2016. Read more: Andrew Trench...

  • Andrew Trench jumps ship from News24 to Times Media

    A little under a year after joining 24.com, Andrew Trench has announced his resignation from the position of managing editor of News24. Originally brought in to help bolster the Naspers-owned publishers investigative efforts, and to help set up its wire service, Trench is leaving to take up a position at Times Media. According to a press release sent to Memeburn, Trench said his departure "wasn't planned and it wasn't solicited and my leaving is no reflection of my feelings about the 24-family. It's been an amazing and exhilarating year with exciting plans unfolding for the year ahead." Read more: 24.com...

  • impactAFRICA: $500k African data journalism fund launches

    Code for Africa on Monday announced the launch of impactAFRICA, a US$500 000 fund aimed at providing grants and technical support for impactful data journalism projects across the continent. The initiative comes from a partnership between Code for Africa and the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) and is funded by a consortium of donors led by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), and including the World Bank and CFI Media Cooperation (CFI). The fund, which is already open for submissions, claims to be the first data-driven investigative journalism on the continent. According to a press release sent to Memeburn,...

  • Times Media bolsters digital division with 3 new appointments

    Times Media on Thursday announced that it had bolstered its digital division with three appointments at the senior executive level. The new hires see Riaan Wolmarans appointed Head of Audience Development, Percy Goetsch Head of Product, and Dan Calderwood Head of Multimedia. They will form part of the team directed by Lisa MacLeod, Head of Digital Publishing at Times Media. Macleod herself was poached from Media 24, where she served as GM for Digital Publishing, in June this year. The team will form a core part of positioning Times Media for an increasingly digital future. Their focus will be on...

  • Are selfie sticks and smartphones the future of TV newsrooms?

    Ask any contemporary journalist what pieces of equipment they couldn't live without and chances are most will immediately mention their smartphone. With it, they can take notes, live-tweet, record interviews and, send through on-the-spot footage. We're all pretty comfortable with that kind of journalism, especially in the online space, but is the smartphone about to have a seriously disruptive effect on TV news? Before you scroll straight to the comments section and type a long essay on the vast amounts of user-generated videos TV news channels ram down our throats on a daily basis, that's not what we're talking...

  • 4 things we learned about BuzzFeed from CEO Jonah Peretti’s memo to staff

    If you’ve spent any time on the Internet during the last few years, it would be almost impossible to avoid the content juggernaut by the name of BuzzFeed. Its influence over what we share and the way we share it has seeped into all aspects of online culture. And the numbers prove it: in a new memo to the company founder and CEO Jonah Perretti declares that “Today we are a global, cross-platform, tech-driven network generating FIVE BILLION monthly content views from our site, multiple BuzzFeed apps, and over 30 other platforms including Facebook video, YouTube, and Snapchat.” Those...

  • #FeesMustFall: how SA students are using social to subvert traditional media

    The revolution will be tweeted. It's a refrain which first entered popular consciousness during the Arab Spring, where social media played a crucial role in the organisation of protests which rocked the Middle East and Africa in the early years of this decade. Over the past week it's become increasingly clear that it's a refrain worth applying to the mass student protests taking place across South Africa. The protests, which kicked off at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) last week, started off being about a proposed 11% increase in tuition fees by the institution. Since then, they have...

  • What does the Skye Grove plagiarism incident tell us about ethics in social media, journalism?

    Chris Roper is the former Editor-in-Chief of the Mail & Guardian. He is currently a Senior Knight Fellow at the International Center for Journalists, and the data editor for ICFJ’s Code for Africa (CfAfrica) data journalism initiative in Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Tanzania. Memeburn recently broke news that Skye Grove, a prominent member of the South African Instagram community, had been caught out plagiarising other people's images. Over a number of years Grove, a communications professional, had taken and edited other people's photos before posting them as her own on Instagram. She went on to sell some of those...

  • Code for Africa gets $4.7m boost from Bill and Melinda Gates foundation

    Data journalism and civic technology organisation Code for Africa has received a US$4.7-million investment from the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. According to a blog post written by Code for Africa head Justin Arenstein, the funding will be used to help the organisation's civic technologists work with newsrooms around the continent. "The three-year programme at Code for Africa (CfAfrica) initially targets newsrooms in three regional ‘hub’ nations, in Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa,"Arenstein writes. "It will expand to include Tanzania in 2016, and will also tap into CfAfrica’s digital experimentation in newsrooms elsewhere in Africa". A part of the grant...

  • Has coding become journalism’s most important skill?

    Journalism is changing faster than ever before. The rise of technology has not only changed the business model for media but also its approach to content. Data is the new content. Of course journalism is still about storytelling, but the way those stories are told is changing rapidly. Drones are fast becoming an accepted reporting tool. Computers can also be instructed to write basic stories. They can change stories too. For example, take a look at this story from NY Times Upshot about the best and worst places to grow up in the US and notice how the text...

  • Twitter bot corrects users referring to Caitlyn Jenner as ‘He’

    It's been a little over a week since Caitlyn Jenner, formerly known as Bruce Jenner, introduced herself to the world, but people don't seem to be able to get to grips with using the correct pronoun. An automated Twitter feed stared correcting users who mis-identified Caitlyn Jenner as 'he'. So when a twitter user refers to Jenner using the wrong pronoun, the bot automatically corrects the tweet with the reminder of using Jenner's preferred female pronoun. The account was dubbed @she_not_he. The athlete and TV star 'Bruce Jenner' began transitioning to Caitlyn earlier in the year. She's went through breast augmentation...