— Tania Barricklo (@tbarricklo) May 8, 2014
Continuing my series of posts about live coverage, this guest post is from Tony Adamis, editor of the Daily Freeman in Kingston, N.Y., from an email he sent last month about his staff’s recent work, with tweets, links, last names of staffers and a few comments added by me.
The Freeman isn’t one of the four Project Unbolt pilot newsrooms, but illustrates how other Digital First Media newsrooms are applying the techniques of the project. The message came a few weeks after the editors of the company’s Northeast newsrooms met in New Haven, discussing much of what we had done and learned so far in the project.
I like the variety of live coverage events mentioned in his email, especially the sensitive way the Freeman covered a soldier’s funeral.
I’ve blogged before about the importance of praise in leading a newsroom. This is an excellent example, with Tony dishing out specific praise by name to several staff members and then passing the praise up the line to his own bosses.
We’ll start with Tony’s message to me and some other DFM editors:
Much of the work cited here is cloud-based, community-building, real-time, mobile-friendly, multi-platform engagement, and curated efforts.
And, though it doesn’t get a hyphen, it is UNBOLTED, to boot.
Seriously, I feel like we’ve turned another corner. Steve’s encouragement at the New Haven meeting to ScribbleLive more routinely was a good nudge. While the serviceman’s funeral and Kingston Classic races were obvious, the senatorial presser was less so, but gave us a splendid real-time report that was an eye-opener.
Now for Tony’s message to his staff, which he forwarded to us:
Now that I have had a few seconds to catch my breath …
Our two days of coverage of the return and burial of the remains of Sgt. Shawn Farrell II were challenging. The story was logistically difficult — both in the field and in the office — and, yet, all members of the team did splendidly.
Rip Van Winkle council pic.twitter.com/svGla6eHYo
— Tania Barricklo (@tbarricklo) May 7, 2014
Our live coverage is beginning to show real polish and sophistication and is truly a team effort. The reporting from the field had both breadth and depth and was hustled to us by Brian, Ariel and Tania and ably packaged and moved to our readers by Ivan Lajara and Jeremy Schiffres. Paul Kirby pitched in to authenticate material sent to us by Sgt. Farrell’s unit in Afghanistan.
We chose to make the live coverage one of hand selection to avoid the pitfalls of a misstep to an automatically fed ScribbleLive container and Ivan performed this job magnificently while also attending to “one or two” other tasks for which he is responsible at the Freeman. (!!)
Somehow, we also got our print editions out, thanks to Jeremy, Felicia Hodges and Tom Wakeman.
Congratulations and thanks to all.
Before continuing with Tony’s note, I’ll add my applause to the sensitive coverage of the soldier’s funeral, a difficult but important event to cover. I have blogged earlier about livetweeting funerals and advice for covering a soldier’s death.
Continuing Tony’s note to his staff:
I also commend to everyone’s attention two other recent, live, team efforts:
1) The autofed, ScribbleLive coverage of the Gillibrand presser earlier in the week by Ariel and Tania, with full support from Jeremy and Ivan. This is a model for our coverage of most live reporting events and something we should be looking to do routinely. Beautifully done.
— Tania Barricklo (@tbarricklo) May 5, 2014
Press conferences can be big news or they can be trivial, but if they’re worth covering, they are worth covering live. Back to Tony:
2) The autofed, ScribbleLive coverage of the Kiwanis Kingston Classic by Eric Houghtaling, Mike Stribl, Jesse Disbrow, Tania, and Ron Rosner, with technical support from Ivan. The effort raised our coverage to a new level of timeliness, even as the Classic expanded the number and geographical reach of its events.
The Sports staff also provided wall-to-wall, text-based coverage of the Classic, with Touts, and Tania uploaded hundreds upon hundreds of photos to galleries that were a big hit with readers, registering more than 100K page views.
As with press conferences, every sporting event that is worth covering is worth live coverage. I see that even the editor joined in the coverage of the Kingston Classic:
— Tony Adamis (@tadamis1) April 27, 2014
Back to Tony:
Also this week, digital props to Patricia for producing five Touts last night along with her coverage of the DCLeg/Jail story.
Dutchess County Exec Marc Molinaro reacts to committee vote for PODs at jail. Full legislator to vote Monday http://t.co/YhUfznm5uN
— patricia doxsey (@pattiatfreeman) May 9, 2014
Great work all around. Our transformation continues apace and we should all take pride.
Thanks to Tony for sharing this message to his staff. I welcome other guest posts from editors (or other journalists) about your efforts to unbolt from the processes and culture of the print newsroom.