Author Archives: charris0930

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Generally whenever numbers are mentioned in anything, I tend to get lost. However, I understand Briggs and how the use of spreadsheets, algorithms, etc. can help the audience get information they want more quickly and that can increase the readers you have.

Technology is constantly changing and evolving, meaning that data driven journalism will become more prevalent and  it’s important to not only be literate in writing but also tech savvy.

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The two chapters by Filak and Briggs meshed well in the way that Filak talked about writing online while Briggs specifically talked about writing blog posts.

Filak talks of giving readers something quick, updating your writing with changes, and promoting your content are all aspects of being a successful online writer. Briggs also highlighted the importance of frequently releasing and updating your content. Briggs says that adding links and graphics can help as well with your reading engaging with your writing.

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Reading this I just felt that it was an extension of the things we’d been taught in writing 1. The importance of style, grammar, and clarity will forever be relevant in journalistic writing. The pace and flow of your writing shows the reader your style.

He also touched on knowing how to cover and event correctly and effectively by highlighting the importance of preparation and fact checking.

Overall, I felt it was all information I knew but it’s always good to have a refresher.

What If It Happens To You?

I remember when I was a child, my Uncle Marcus used to babysit me. I still remember him entertaining me with childish antics, making me laugh, running around with me, and even pouting when I had to leave. In high school I got to know him more as my uncle, and not just a playmate from my childhood. We were a lot more similar than I ever would have thought. We both love writing, poetry, reading, and all genres of music. My mom, myself and Uncle Marcus would always sit in the living room of my house and just talk, laugh, and I’d listen as they reminisce on their childhood and try to teach me some life lessons. I remember him always referring to himself as “the cool uncle.” I never really gave him any validation on the phrase, but now I wish I had.

 

In October of 2016, Uncle Marcus was murdered.

 

He was shot during a home invasion. In a split second, my grandfather lost a son, my mother lost her brother, and I lost my uncle. I remember not being able to recall a time before or after that I’ve ever seen my mother so numb but still trying her best to keep it together. I remember sobbing with my sister during his funeral at the site of him in the casket, as it both really hit us that he was taken from us and is not coming back. I remember constantly hearing the phrases “he needs justice” and “gun violence has to stop” from family members.

 

In 2016, my uncle was only one of more than 38,000 gun-related deaths in America. Now, in 2018, gun-related deaths are already a third of that. Within the first 178 days of 2018, there have already been 154 mass shootings.

 

Thousands of people this year have had to go through the same pain I have, the same pain my mother had, and the same pain my grandfather had.
Gun reform laws have been debated for years. Regardless of which side of the fence you stand on (or if you happen to be straddling it), think of this: Do you put more value on a piece of steel or the lives of children, teens, and adults, that have been murdered? It’s very easy to look at it from only one side, or to take what you’ve been told by those around you and run with it. But, if you take a step back to try and empathize with those who have lost, you’ll realize how easy it is to dismiss gun reform if you’ve never lost someone you love to a bullet. Changes need to be made in our country for not only our own lives but also for the generations that could have been, and the ones that will be. I already lost Uncle Marcus, and with the way things are now, it’d be too easy to relive such traumas again.

Photo Assignment

Students a part of a theatre class gather in the Swanson center to practice scenes/ Jade Vickery

A students taps away on his phone as he waits to enter class/ Wes Turner

The streets of Demorest, Georgia/Cindy Harris

Fallen leaves get trapped in a spider wed/ Jade Vickery

Wes Turner casually sitting/ Davis Barlow

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As Briggs talked about the importance of photography in journalism and how photos can take the place of words, my mind kept jumping back to the things I’m learning in photojournalism. It’s important, when taking photos, to not just aim for a picture but to find the story behind it and that even factors such as lighting play a big part in telling that story.

Photography help push a story along and can sometimes make a story more real with its imagery. I enjoyed reading this chapter and am looking forward to learning more bout photojournalism.

About Me

If there is one thing I know for sure, it’s this: I’ve always had a passion and love for media. When I was a little girl, I adored TV. I watched the screen all day with

IMG_5714my older sister and younger brother. We never switched the channel from PBS Kids, it was our favorite thing to do besides annoy one another and run around accidentally breaking things.

As I got older, we frequently switched the channel to Disney. I’d memorize full show opening sequences and episodes. I always told my mom that I’d be on Disney Channel one day. When I reached my preteen years, I made my first appearance on television. Okay, no, it was not on Disney, but instead my elementary school’s news broadcast as the weather girl. It wasn’t the big debut I probably dreamed about but I loved my position on the news team and always gave the news with a smile.

When middle school, and puberty, came around, I found interest in reading and writing. I was reading a new book every three days, sometimes writing my own sequels or spin-offs to my favorites. I watched movies and thought of ways I could have wrote a scene or an ending better. I tried to think about why a director would record a scene the way they did or why they used certain music or lighting. It was fun for me to try and put myself in the shoes of a director and think of how I’d film a movie.

In high school I put a lot of my energy into the arts, I did choir all four years and even did a couple of school plays. It’s always been important for me to learn, and through these experiences I learned that I loved being a part of a team or collective. We worked together collectively to sound unified in choir and in theater, dozens of people worked hours to make the show an experience for everyone in the audience. During these years, I thought about ways I could bundle up everything I have a passion for (TV, books, movies, and writing) and put it to use for my future. When I discovered Piedmont at a college fair and looked into their mass communications department, I felt that coming here could help me put all of those passions to use.

Now, as a sophomore here, I’m beginning to get more of a sense of what I want and who I want to be. I’ve learned a lot already that has challenged me, excited me, and left me eager to learn more. So, I take comfort in the feeling that I’m going in the right direction.