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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Whirlwind tour of web2 journalism at eFest

Here's me sharing my Facebook page (among other things) at the eFest education conference in Auckland earlier today. The picture comes courtesy of Thom Cochrane, academic advisor at Unitec, who was in the audience, snapped the pic on his Nokia n95, posted it to his blog and referred to it in his presentation which followed.

Thom and colleagues have armed Unitec design students with n95s and encouraged them to use the phones to blog, vlog, articulate and collaborate as they study. You can see an outline of the programme on a wiki Thom used during his presentation and get a feel for his teaching/learning style at his blog. It's worth a visit.

My presentation constituted a whirlwind tour of the bigger changes we've seen in the news media since 1975, a year when we woke up to Merv Smith on 1ZB, put an ad in the paper on Saturday if we wanted to sell something, and came home at night to Dougal Stevenson's dispassionate delivery of the 6pm TV news.

These are my slides. I didn't manage to attach the notes to them, though, so who knows whether they'll make any sense.

Stephen Harlow, my co-conspirator in introducing a group of Wintec communication students to web2.0 tools and concepts, then took over to talk about how we're encouraging our students to blog, link, use keywords, experiment with audio, video and images, try out tools such as and RSS readers, and get used to talking to each other online.

There are many challenges in starting a course like this. Among them are knowing what to introduce first, having the patience to let new bloggers find their voice, being persistent in encouraging more considered writing, and waiting for the penny to drop about the value of things like RSS feeds, social bookmarks and good use of keywords (hard concepts to understand if you generally only look at five websites and don't go looking for anything in particular).

But we're well on the way, learning as we go, and enjoying watching the likes of Media Witty (aka Rhys's blog) and Sarah Byles' Motorsport blog develop.

Watch this space.

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