Sharif Durhams came to visit #loweclass #sports last Thursday to discuss the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's coverage of sports, and how the newspaper has used online and social media outlets to get their stories out to the public. Durhams is the social media editor for the Journal Sentinel, and is also one of the breaking news reporters for the paper.
Durhams started to his presentation talking about how sports is a business, and many people forget that. The Journal Sentinel found out after doing a little research that the difference in revenue from the Packers winning the Super Bowl to them losing the Super Bowl is about $1 million. The Journal Sentinel on the online front, has to deal with websites such as Bleacher Report (which I proudly write for #shamelessplug), which was recently bought out by Turner Sports for $200 million. Sports networks are realizing how important it is to have an online presence, and the newspapers have to combat that.
The Journal Sentinel has decided to combine the old school of journalism, meaning the print version that is reads as a story, and the new school of journalism, meaning the story is meant to be a conversation between the writer and the audience. Ways the Journal Sentinel has done so is by creating a live blog for Packer games, where Tom Silverstein will give live analysis of the game, and then return to answer any questions the fans have after the game. Other inter actives include "Pick the Winners", where fans can poll whether the Packers will win or lose which game on the schedule, and a map where fans can see the location of "Packer Bars" around the country. Durhams has had a helping part in creating each of these interactives.
Durhams, being a member of the breaking news desk of the Journal Sentinel, follows how breaking news affects the traffic to the jsonline.com, the newspaper's website. During class, there was news that Greg Jennings was going to have groin surgery. This became the second most visited page on the Journal Sentinel's website during class, where there were about 10,00 visits to the site. During the Brookfield Mall shooting, that number was doubled. When people find out about breaking news, he says they then turn to the Journal Sentinel to confirm the rumors they are hearing. The website has to have information ready to go so that the people keep coming back to get their information on breaking news stories.
Durhams visit to #loweclass was another very entertaining speaker. He clearly knows his stuff about social media, online media, and how it relates to getting a story out to the people. He acknowledges the fact that a journalist's job never really ends; it's a 24/7 commitment. I'm looking forward to listening to the experiences that other #loweclass