Monday morning presentation

Opening Slide

Here’s the Monday morning Powerpoint presentation that I gave at the AUB workshop. The movies and many of the images are now link directly to websites. I’ll upload the text I spoke from as soon as I have a chance to look at it again.

Online Journalism Atlas

Online Journalism Atlas

Paul Bradshaw of the Online Journalism Blog has started an atlas of online journalism. Who volunteers to submit information for Lebanon?

Disclosure

Since we talked about whether to disclose or not disclose our funding sources in class, I thought I would show an example where well-known blogger Rebecca Blood has disclosed her relationship with Amazon, where you can find her book(s). Click on the image to get a better view.

Rebecca Blood’s disclosure

Audacity: And now we’re back…

Adham Laughing

Apologies, again, for the technical difficulties. I raced home and installed version 1.2.6 on my husband’s computer and edited Adham Najdi’s interview down to about 1:44 and saved it at three different bit speeds so that we can evaluate the trade-off between quality and download speed. Now I am ready to reintroduce you to the wonderful world of audio. Here are the steps I took to edit this piece. The photo is of Adham and was taken by Gabriela Bulisova.

  1. Project–>Import Audio, located the Adham_Najdi_dup.wav file
  2. File–> Save Project As…
  3. Click next to track beginning to enlarge waveform.
  4. Duplicate track in case anything goes wrong. Mute original track. Adjust gain to +15dB.
  5. Insert cursor at about 2:51, “What were you studying in school?” Edit–>Select…”start to cursor.” When the selection is highlighted, Ctrl+X.
  6. Save
  7. Edit–>Move cursor to track start.
  8. Tap the space bar to play and pause and play again.
  9. Where you hear an “uhhhhhhhh,” select that area and zoom in. (Use edit–>Select…move cursor to end of selection to try something new.)
  10. Play again, noting precise times and where to cut.
  11. Use hand selector tool to refine your selection.
  12. Cut the section between about 8 seconds and 22 seconds.
  13. Start again around, “Why were you studying that?”
  14. Cut from about 11.8 to 15.6.
  15. Split 45.837 to 51.46.
  16. Solo original to hear the cut that we’ll have to deal with later when we refine transitions.
  17. Select Tariq’s “umm” response with shift+arrow key. Cut.
  18. Zoom all the way into 1:53:827 “ghalaT” to get the last bit of the T.
  19. Edit–>Move cursor to selection start.
  20. Edit–>Select to end. And cut.
  21. Now it’s time to go back and deal with the transition. Edit–>Select cursor to end and split.
  22. Delete unnecessary tracks.
  23. Select a bit of the end of the first track. Go to the Effects menu and choose Fade Out.
  24. Fit in window to get a sense of where we are.
  25. Zoom in again.
  26. Select timeshift tool. <–>
  27. Move second half of track to where the first half will overlap it a bit. Select a bit of the initial audio. Go to the effects menu and choose Fade In.
  28. Go to the Effects menu and select Fade In. Repeat if it’s not sounding quite right.
  29. We need to even the volume out a bit. But first let’s condense the two tracks into one. Select them both by shift+click. Then go to Project–>Quick Mix.
  30. Select the volume envelope tool. Create and drag points to adjust the volume where necessary.
  31. Listen to the whole track and make sure you like it.
  32. Save. Set your streaming speed in the Preferences menu. Go to File–>Export to MP3. That’s it!

We’re learning about image sizes for the web

dsc06242-1.jpg
100 pixels wide

dsc06242-2.jpg
200 pixels wide

dsc06242-3.jpg
300 pixels wide

dsc06248-100px.jpg
100 pixels

Digital Audio & Video Editing

There are two main distinctions between editing digital audio and video and analog audio and video (you know, magnetic reel-to-reel tape and celluloid film).

The digital editing process is:

1. Nondestructive
2. Nonlinear

Editing both audio and video comprises a sequence of decisions that will produce an infinite number of unique variations that vary according to the author’s voice.

There are three discrete parts in the post-production process:

1. IMPORTING

Source files/clips are imported to a storyboard or tracklist.

2. EDITING

Then, a rough cut is assembled via cutting out unnecessary data and arranging the clips according to a storyboard or script. Next, we apply transitions and effects to the rough cut, reflecting our tone and/or style.

3. PUBLISHING/ARCHIVING

Once we have finalized the piece, we prepare it for sharing, i.e., distribution and/or archiving at places like archive.org and ourmedia.org.

First, we’ll loosely follow along with this audio tutorial shared by Mindy McAdams on her amazing blog Teaching Online Journalism, which has been posted to the blogroll.

Then, we’ll work with your video clips in Windows MediaMaker, according to instructions shared in Journalism 2.0, a resource made possible by the Knight Citizen News Network that no online journalist should be without—and that some enterprising Arabic speaker should translate to share the wealth.

Below I’ve transcribed the audio of the photoessay we saw on Monday, Continuous War: Cluster Bombs in South Lebanon, to give you an idea of how many words (267) fill 1 minute and 44 seconds of airtime.

Rasha Zayoun is a 17-year-old teenager from Maraka, south Lebanon, who lost her leg to a cluster bomb. One that was tangled in a bush of wild vine and unwittingly brought home by her father. As Rasha started sorting through the herbs, she was attracted by a bell-shaped object. She thought it was a toy. She picked it up. It vibrated. She dropped it. It exploded. Rasha still has nightmares about the incident but she puts on a brave face. Inside she’s very upset. She wants to be with her friends, to walk, to go to school, to see the world. But she’s ashamed of her leg, so she stays home. The young boy she’s in love with stayed by her side and that made her love him more. More than the whole world, she says. Rasha feels that everybody is more concerned with how she lost her leg than they are about her. From when she was young, Rasha always wanted to be a dressmaker. Without the limb, for her, that would be difficult. The limb is her ticket to independence. To not feeling ashamed. To not feeling different. She’s scared of the future. Of being able to get a limb. So many thoughts run through her mind. What if the limb costs money? They have no money. That would be totally crushing. I might as well die, she says. In the future, when Rasha has children, and she hopes she will, she won’t let them out of her sight. She’ll keep them close to her, to try and protect them from a fate like hers.

Finally, anyone who wants to know more about producing and writing for audio, should visit Transom.

Writing for the web

  1. Write concisely.
  2. Compose headlines that will mean something to everyone.
  3. Use active voice.
  4. Break up gray matter.
  5. Link, link, and link again. But make sure your readers know where they’re going.
  6. Attribute. A lot of these tips were paraphrased from an article by Robert Niles, the editor of the Annenberg School of Communication’s Online Journalism Review.
  7. Spell check, apply punctuation and style consistently.