New England battles Baltimore

December 4, 2007

By: Aaron Oberlin

The Baltimore Ravens play host tonight to the New England Patriots. They bring a four-game losing streak against the Patriots who are undefeated this year. The Ravens are in jerseys that are all black. New England is wearing white tops with blue pants.

Before the kickoff, there is a moment of silence to remember the former Washington Redskins’ safety Sean Taylor. The 24-year-old was murdered last week in his Miami home.

8:40- Baltimore kicks the ball off. It is a touchback.

8:44 – 42-yard pass by Tom Brady to Donte’ Stallworth. There is a face mask penalty at the end of the play resulting in half the distance to the goal.

8:47 – Penalties continue to plague the Ravens. It is first down on the Raven’s 2-yard line.

8:48 – Ravens stop a run to the right to make it third and goal. The crowd is loud and lively. Ravens call a timeout.

8:51 – Brady has plenty of time to throw, but Ravens eventually apply pressure. Brady scrambles to the right and throws to Heath Evans who drops the ball in the back of the end zone. Field goal kicker Stephen Gostkowski kicks a field goal.

8:54 – Gostowski kicks the ball off to Yamon Figors. A short kick is returned to their own 29-yard line.

8:55 – Kyle Boller is the starting quarterback.

8:56 – Running back Willis McGahee runs it twice for a first down.

8:59 – After three plays for nothing, Baltimore punts it to wide receiver Wes Welker who does not return it.

9:02 – Brady starts the drive from the 12-yard line. The wind is apparently high as Brady’s pass wobbles. One minute later, Brady’s pass is deflected on third down. New England will punt. Baltimore’s Derek Martin hits a man out-of-bounds during the return for a fifteen yard unsportsman-like conduct penalty. It takes the Ravens to their own 30-yard line.

9:08 – On third down, Boller scrambles and throws to wide receiver Devard Darling for a 53-yard gain. The pass advances Baltimore to New England’s 18-yard line.

9:14 – Boller passes to WR Derek Mason for a touchdown. Matt Stover completes the extra point. The score is 7-3 in Baltimore’s favor.

9:16 – New England’s Ellis Hobbs returns the ball to the Patriots’ 27- yard line. First play is a sack by Fry for a loss of six yards.

9:19 – It is the end of the first quarter.

9:21 – Second quarter starts with an incomplete pass by Brady to Jabar Gaffney on third down. New England punts and the ball is downed on Baltimore’s 34-yard line.

9:25 – After a Boller first down pass to Mason, McGahee breaks off a 15-yard run to New England’s 31-yard line.

9:27 – Ravens go for it on fourth down with six yards to go. Boller throws to Mason for a first down.

9:30 – New England’s Hobbs is down with an injury. Trainers run onto the field to check on him.

9:32 – Stover kicks a 29-yard field goal. The score is 10-3.

9:35 – A line drive kick to Heath Evans starts New England on their own 40-yard line.

9:38 – Patriots get a first down and go no-huddle.

9:40 – A holding call on Baltimore’s cornerback Corey Ivy gives new England a first-and-goal from the 10-yard line.

9:42 – Cornerback Chris McAlister commits pass interference on Randy Moss to give New England a first-and-goal from the one.

9:43 – Heath Evans runs to the left for a touchdown. It is his third of the year. The extra point is good. The score is 10-10.

9:47 – The Ravens start on their own 22-yard line.

9:49 – There is 3:52 left on the clock as the Ravens punt to Welker who gets no gain on the return. New England gets the ball on the 32-yard line.

9:53 – Baltimore gets a three-and-out by stopping tight end Benjamin Watson one yard shy of the first down.

9:54 – Baltimore starts on their own 12-yard line. A short run by McGahee takes the game to the two-minute warning.

9:58 – Junior Seau stops running back Musa Smith in the backfield to bring up fourth down. New England takes a timeout with 1:13 left. Shortly after, the Ravens punt to Welker who fair catches at the 35-yard line.

10:01 – Baltimore safety Ed Reed intercepts the ball. During his run back he is hit by Kevin Faulk who forces a fumble. New England’s Watson recovers the fumble on the New England 27-yard line.

10:04 – It is Halftime. The score is 10-10. 36, 89 67, 92

10:18 – New England kicks off to Figurs to start the . Ravens start on their own 27-yard line.

10:21 – Three straight runs by McGahee give Baltimore a first down.

10:23 – After another first down run by Mcgahee, Boller hits Mason for a 20-yard completion. Baltimore is the 18-yard line. First down hand off goes to McGahee who breaks an 18-yard run for a touchdown. The runs were not flashy. They were aggressive and powerful. The extra point is good making the score 17-10 in favor of Baltimore.

10:27 – With 10 minutes left in the third quarter, New England starts from their own 28-yard line.

10:31 – Brady completes a 35-yard pass to Laurence Maroney for a first down. He got most of the yards after the catch. Immediately, the Patriots run the ball with Maroney on first down for four yards. Maroney is ran three times but stopped.

10:32 – New England goes for it on fourth-and-one. Kevin Faulk runs for a first. Patriots have the ball at the Raven’s 22-yard line.

10:37 – Brady throws a two-yard touchdown to wide receiver Randy Moss on third-and-one. The extra point is good making the score 17-17.

10:40 – With 4:15 left on the clock in the third quarter, Baltimore starts on their own 44-yard line. Figors had a return about 30 yards. First play is a McGahee run to the left. He gains 18 yards followed by a dump pass for a first down.

10:43 – Another first down, this time by two runs from Smith. The Ravens are playing smash-mouth football.

10:45 – There is a measurement in the red zone on the two-yard line to see if Baltimore gets a first down. It is a confirmed first down as the third quarter ends.

10:48 – The fourth quarter starts with a run by McGahee. He is stopped on the one-yard line. Then, Boller throws a touchdown to tight end Wilcox.

10:52 – New England starts their drive frm their own 31-yard line. Brady gets sacked to make it third-and 12. He is then sacked again for a nine-yard loss. The crowd is standing and shouting with excitement.

10:55 – New England punts to Figors who breaks some tackles as he returns it to New England’s 26-yard line. It is a 35-yard punt return. The crowd gets even more pumped up.

11:00 – Boller throws deep resulting in an interception by 36 Sanders who returns it to the New England 43-yard line.

11:03 – With 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter, Brady throws to Maroney for 42 yards. The ball is now on the 26 -yard line. Moss then drops a pass in the end zone. Gosktowski kicks a 37-yard field goal. Baltimore is winning 24-20 with just under nine minutes in the fourth quarter.

11:17 – After a three-and-out by Baltimore, New England starts a drive from their 44-yard line. They have to punt due to penalties halting their drive. The punt is less than 15 yards, which gives Baltimore the ball on their 28-yard line.

11:25 – After a three-and-out by Baltimore, they punt the ball 36 yards. So, with three minutes and 30 seconds, Brady starts from their 27-yard line. He gets two first downs before it goes to the two-minute warning.

11:30 – With one minute and 38 seconds left, Brady scrambles on fourth down to pick up a first and still have a chance to win.

11:40 – On fourth down again, a hold allows New England to keep their drive alive. Then, Brady throws to Gaffney for a touchdown with 44 seconds left. Linebacker Bart Scott then commits two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, which backs Baltimore up 30 yards on the kickoff, but Reed goes offsides during the extra point to make it 35 yards. The extra point is good. The score is in the Patriots’ favor 27-24.

11:47 – Boller throws a hail mary that is caught by Baltimore’s Mark Clayton. He is tackled on the one-yard line. The game ends.

Macy’s Day Parade Live Blog

December 3, 2007

By Courtney Herrig

81st Annual Macy Day Parade: Live Blog

9:10am Parade opened with Broadway Camp’s performance “Making Magic.”

9:15am The children of military parents stationed in Iraq lead the parade.

9:18am Laura Bell Bundie sang a hilarious scene from Broadway’s Legally Blonde.  The cast performed the scene where Elle Woods is accepted into Harvard Lay School.

9: 30am Young Frankenstein Broadway danced and sang to “Transylvania Mania”

9: 40am The Mary Poppins Musical performed “Supercalifajalisticexpialidocious”.

9:52am The 72 famous legs slow danced to “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” originally sung by Judy Garland in “Meet me in St. Louis”.

10am Dolly Parton, 61, performed like a youthful Carrie Underwood.

10:11am New floats in the parade this year will be William Steig’s swamp-loving ogre Shrek, Sesame Street’s fairy-in-training Abby Cadabby and Hello Kitty Supercute, the cape- and tiara-wearing feline superhero.

10: 23am Abby Cadabby makes her debut at the parade. Sesame Street’s Abby Cadabby, is the first new female muppet on Sesame Street in 13 years and is a playmate of Elmo, Zoë, Baby Bear and the gang. Being the new girl on the block, she is meant to bring a further opportunity to share lessons on the differences of people from different backgrounds.

10:30am Jonas Brothers sang the pop song “ Hold On“.  Jonas Brothers, the newest Hanson, use rock instrumentals and vocals but with less rebellious rock undertones.

10:42am Utah State band champions played as Hello Kitty, a new float this year, drifted above their performance.

10:50am Bindi, 9, and Terry Irwin danced and sang Animal Planet’s “Animal Wonders” float.  The Ronald McDonald float drifts behind the Bindi performance.

11am Rachel Smith, Miss USA, from Tennessee and the bobble head founding fathers floated in front of Virginia Tech’s marching band.

11:12am The second band to perform was “Lifehouse”.

11:20am The ever-popular “Hairspray” sang to “You Can’t Stop the Beat” at a quarter till 11.  After the John Water’s Broadway remake, The National Dance Institute choreographed a fun routine to an Irish Folk song.

11:25am Jeff Koons, well-known American artists, 1985 sculpture, “ Rabbit”, was remade into a helium version for the 81st Macy’s Day Parade.   The balloon is a post-modern design, just like the sculpture.

11: 28am Ashely Tisdale performed “Last Christmas” sans Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgen – her High School Music costars. There has been many tabloid references made of the absences of the lead co-stars at high profile events.

11:35am The Mr. Potato Head balloon was wearing tennis shoes to promote fitness and healthful eating by the National Potato Association.

11:38am Jordon Sparks snag on the Pillsbury float alongside the doughboy himself.

11:44am Foot juggler drops his partner on national television . . .

11: 45amWillard Scout ushered the queen of the day  – She is a hundred years young!

11:50am Wynona Judd performs “I’ll be home for Christmas.”

11:56am Santa Arrives! The holiday season has now officially begun.

Chip Scanlan: 4 Lessons in Conducting an Interview

December 3, 2007

By Courtney Herrig

The course on NewsU, Reporting, by instructor Chip Scanlan was very useful because no one ever teaches the journalist how to conduct an interview. I actually took a different course, entitled, 5 Steps to Multimedia, but the course had no interactive features and was not structured logically. However, this course was engaging and informative because the lesson used audio and video to teach the lesson. The course is presented with animation and audio for the interview and video footage of the instructor. The lesson was very cleaver because the instructor calls you one a video phone while you are in an interview and gives you hints and advice to get a better response from the interviewee.

4 Lessons to Reporting
Lesson 1: Always come prepared with questions listed in a notebook. The questions should be audience centered, i.e. ask questions that the reader would ask. I interpret this rule to mean that my line of question should follow my initial thoughts when I was first presented this topic and interview – before I did my research. In my opinion, this is the best way to place myself in the shoes of the reader.

The instructer qoutes John Brody, author of The Craft of Interviewing, “The interview is like a chess player, he says, never moving a piece or asking a question without a greater purpose.” I like this perspective because it demands that the reporter think about the implications of each question and answer. This is not an easy feat, but with time and practice this could be a craft.

Lesson 2: The instructor is quick to point out that interviewing is not an art or science – it is somewhere in between. The reporter cannot aways predict what people say, because humans are unpredictable beings. He says that reporters often ask questions that suppress rather than produce information. Scanlan explains that the most productive interviews are conversations. This rule is closely related to the first rule, if the reporter is not responding to what is said by the interviewee but simply going down the list of questions they are not having a conversation. This can be very off putting and could create an empty story depending the topic.

Lesson 3: Listen with the heart as well as the head. Scanlan says the tape recorder taught him his hardest lesson. I could empathize with this part of the lesson. This exactly how I felt time I listened to my first interview that I had recorded on my new iPod digital recorder. It was an embarrassment. I had been told by my closest friend that I wasn’t the best listener, but I had a difficult time stepping out of my perspective every time I tried to improve my listening skills. The voice recorder put this personal flaw right in my face . . . or rather my ears. Even though I was hearing and listening to what the interviewee had to say, I was not listening with my heart. This is perhaps the hardest lesson of this course. Lesson 2 and 3 are a balancing act; the interviewer needs to talk less, but still keep a conversational environment to the interview.

Lesson 4: No such thing as “off the record”. Scalan discusses that if the interviewee uses this term, explain that nothing is off the record. The term “not for attribution” may be what they mean. He explains that “not for attribution” means the sources information can be used in the story but will not be referenced back to the interviewee.

Live Blog

December 3, 2007

Shantrell Scott

December 1, 2007

Live Blog

USF Total Praise Gospel Dance Ministry

“Gospel Extravaganza 2007 

December 1, 2007 6:18pm: After rushing to the event, Gospel Extrav ( a night of dance, mime and worship) I finally made it to the program eighteen minutes after it was supposed to start. However, there were only maybe 20 people in the whole entire room.  I was in a hurry for nothing.

December 1, 2007 6:26pm: The program still has not started yet. Just sitting, looking at the same 20 people that had already showed up to the ULH building.

December 1, 2007 6:34pm: The opening prayer was done by Total Praise Advisor, Natalie Leonard. 

December 1, 2007 6:38pm:The introduction of the master of ceremonies, Pastor Williams from Harvest Ministries.

December 1, 2007 6: 40pm: Now he is on stage and is talking about why he was invited as the host of tonight’s program.     

December 1, 2007 6:44pm:The master of ceremonies is almost done talking, and is now introducing the first performance known as the “The Dancing Disciples”. I believe that these two girls are sisters and are doing a mime piece to Donnie McClurkin. 

 December 1, 2007 7:02pm:The duo’s dance is over. The audience is cheering for the “The Dancing Disciples” and the girls look so tired and their makeup is running down their faces. Now the master of ceremonies is back on the stage and is ready to introduce the next act, but before he did, they played a little music while waiting for the next performance. 

December 1, 2007 7:05pm:The next group is a rap group called, “Christian Soujaz”. It consists of two guys and one girl. They did a rap and told the audience to do a certain hand clap to the music. It was fun with a good message. 

December 1, 2007 7:17pm:The next act was a poem by the advisor of Total Praise, Ms. Natalie. I’m going to the rest room at this time. I really was getting bored. 

December 1, 2007 7:23pm:The master of ceremonies is now introducing the next person to perform by the name of Brilliance. He was dressed up in a waiter’s uniform and lip sung to a gospel artist’s song. I am not really liking his act too much. He wasn’t really dancing but just squirming around on stage.  

December 1, 2007 7:34pm:The next performance is by the Total Praise mimes, and they are dressed in all black with half of their faces painted white. They are dancing to “Enlarge my territory” by Donald Lawerence. They are actually doing very well.

December 1, 2007 7:46pm:The next guy to perform is known as “Ed” and he too is doing a mime piece. (Why does this whole program consist of mime performances?) Out of all the performances, he is the best one so far. He has a lot of energy up on stage! 

December 1, 2007 7:59pm:Wow, that was awesome. I never seen a guy dance so good and not be ashamed of doing it because he is a male. He was good. I liked his performance.  

December 1, 2007 8:03pm:Man, time is going by so quick. We are now ready for the last performance, but the group is nowhere to be found. 

December 1, 2007 8:08pm:Where is this group? I believe it’s another group from Total Praise and they are running late. The master of ceremonies is now trying to stall and talk us to death. 

December 1, 2007 8:13pm:The last group is finally here and they are dressed in white with red scarves tied around their waste. The young ladies are doing a liturgical piece to the song “East to the West” by Casting Crowns. I love that group.

December 1, 2007 8:19pm:WOW, those girls are strong! They did a stunt where they picked up a girl and lifted her in the air. It was very pretty how they did it where she was in the air acting like Jesus on the cross. I  believe that their dance was the best dance of the night and I’m glad they saved the best for last. 

December 1, 2007 8:25pm:The program is now over and the advisor is praying and calling people up to the stage to receive salvation. However, no one is coming up.  

December 1, 2007 8:33pm: Now it is time to go and I see friends that I haven’t seen in a while. I got to talk with some people that I knew and didn’t know too. Now it is time for me to head home.  

Cleaning your Copy

December 3, 2007

by Priscilla Mader

This is a great class to help journalist to avoid mistakes in grammar, spelling and style.

This course showed me a lot of details to look for in the sentences, in order to avoid mistakes and perform an excellent writing. It also helped me to recognize the areas which I most struggle and make most of the grammatical errors.

I highly recommend this course not only for journalist students, but to anybody.

The Earth Pottery 5th Annual Show

December 3, 2007

By Priscilla Mader

The 5th annual holiday pottery sale promoted by the Tampa local artists, Wesley and Takashi started today at Old Hyde Park Village in the Tampa Artist Emporium (the space was formerly Ann Taylor’s).

In addition to all the functional stoneware pottery, they also introduced new wall hangings and also new lines of tile that can be special ordered.

The sales will continue tomorrow, December 2nd (Sun) 10AM – 2PM.

The Old Hyde Park Village is located at 1618 Snow Ave., Tampa 33606

For further information, please visit the website http://www.fromtheearthpottery.com or call Wesley Allen at (813) 727-7341

News U Course- The Interview

December 3, 2007

By Shantrell Scott    

I really enjoyed the course and learned a lot of information on a subject that is known as my weakness as a journalist. The modules were visual and allowed me to receive clear and useful tips on how to ask the right kinds of questions when doing an interview.    

There was some information that I was already aware, one being the pre-interview, which is to construct several questions that gets you to your goal of what you want out of the story.  What I learned from constructing questions is that the questions don’t have to be so long and complex.  The lesson suggests that the reporter ask more short and simple questions in order to get more feedback from the interviewee.      

I also learned that even journalists have to shut up and be more of listeners than always blurting out question after question or cutting the source off in mid-sentence.  The lesson talked about how we should listen with the heart and really be interested in what the person has to say.   

There were also other useful tips from different writers on how to conduct a good interview, especially in sports writing. One tip that I learned is to not allow the source smell your fear. The writer is supposed to be the one to place the fear in the interviewee because their lives and reputation lies in our hands.  

The lesson also talks about how to handle the popular statement from interviewees: “…and this is “off the record.”  I learned to inform the interviewee about what “off the record” means and that when something is off the record, that means that the information is not meant to be used in the story. The course also talked about “not for attribution” where the source may not be attributed, but only the information is used or the source may be attributed in a general way.    

The entire website was a great help and I hope to continue to use it in the future. 

Live Blog of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

December 3, 2007

Christine Wolstenholme
Live Blog

November 22, 2007 9:00 a.m.
The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Pre- Parade begins with 600 kids from Camp Broadway singing and dancing. The parade is held in Harold’s Square in front of Macy’s department store.

November 22, 2007 9:03 a.m.
Meredith Viera and Matt Lauer are hosting the show on NBC. There are 3.5 million people at the parade.

November 22, 2007 9:04 a.m.
Al Roker, also hosting the show, is at 77th & Central Park West with the parade’s executive producer Robin Hall. Hall says there are 10,000 people in the parade, including children whose parents are currently in Iraq. The parade will be aired in Iraq for them. Hall cut the ribbon.

November 22, 2007 9:07 a.m.
An aerial view showing the crowd and floats, while naming the celebrities that will be in the parade.

November 22, 2007 9:11 a.m.
Another aerial view from Central Park West & 2nd Street, showing beautiful, colorful trees and millions of people lining the streets.

November 22, 2007 9:13 a.m.
Matt and Meredith are at 34th & Broadway in front of Macy’s. A “Legally Blonde” skit from Broadway is being performed.

November 22, 2007 9:20 a.m.
Al Roker speaks with Patti LaBelle about her appearance in the parade and her new holiday CD.

November 22, 2007 9:22 a.m.
Another performance from Broadway, it’s called “Young Frankenstein.”

November 22, 2007 9:29 a.m.
Bob Saget is flying over the parade in a helicopter.

November 22, 2007 9:31 a.m.
A “Xando” skit from Broadway is being performed.

November 22, 2007 9:37 a.m.
Al Roker speaks with Masi Oka and Ali Larter from the cast of Heroes.

November 22, 2007 9:38 a.m.
The 5th or 6th round of commercials are airing. There’s too many and they are more annoying then usual.

November 22, 2007 9:43 a.m.
The cast of “Mary Poppins” from the Amsterdam Theatre is singing Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

November 22, 2007 9:51 a.m.
The Rockettes are performing for their 75th year.

November 22, 2007 9:58 a.m.
The Rockettes dance the 81st annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade into Harold’s Square, followed by the NYPD.

Macy’s Great American Marching Band, made up of kids from 50 different schools, is performing “Swing, swing, swing.”

Dolly Parton sings on a 42 ft. long “Showboat” float.

A Plymouth Rock float floats by with pilgrims and a giant Tom the Turkey float.

November 22, 2007 10:04 a.m.
Cast members and muppets from Sesame Street sing as they float by.

Stephenson High School Band, which has 180 members, plays Medley from “The Wiz.”

A Scooby Doo balloon float goes by.

A “Build A Bear” float with the Jonas Brothers stops so they can perform a song.

November 22, 2007 10:15 a.m.
The float: Barbie the Island Princess stops so Barbie can sing a song.

American Fork High Marching Band from Utah performs.

A balloon float of Hello Kitty dressed as a super hero floats by.

November 22, 2007 10:22 a.m.
“Up with People” performs in front of Macy’s.

Animal Planet presents “Animal Wonders,” a float with Steve Irwin’s wife and daughter performing.

Another high school band from Tennessee dressed as clowns is performing.
McDonald’s Big Red Shoe Car drives by with Ronald McDonald, then the Ronald McDonald balloon float follows behind.

An M&M float goes by with some musical performers.

November 22, 2007 10:32 a.m.
A giant Lady Liberty float goes by with Rachel Smith, Miss USA, along with giant balloon floats of Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington.

Virginia Tech’s Marching Band performs.

The United States Postal Service has a float with stamps from every state on it, along with the band Lifehouse performing a song.

The Snoopy balloon float goes by.

November 22, 2007 10:41 a.m.
Amica Insurance has a float that looks like an old fashioned diner with performers doing a skit from “Hairspray.”

The balloon float JoJo from JoJo’s Circus flies by.

Six hundred cheerleaders rock out to a medley of songs from the ‘60s.

Ne-Yo floats by performing one of his songs.

November 22, 2007 10:50 a.m.
One hundred members of the National Dance Institute are dancing down Broadway.

The Big Apple float goes by with Latin boy-band Menundo performing.

Concord High School Marching Band performs a song from “West Side Story.”

Harold the Fireman, a balloon float, goes by. Following closely behind is a Hess float that looks like the Brooklyn Bridge with a bunch of Hess trucks around it. Good Charlotte is on the float performing “I Don’t Wanna Be In Love.”

The Duracell Energizer Bunny balloon float goes by.

November 22, 2007 11:02 a.m.
Sarah Brightman performs on the Macy’s pirate ship float.

A giant pirate balloon float goes by.

The Paul Laurence Dunbar High School Band performs “The Nutcracker.”
A giant Shrek balloon float swoops over the crowd on Broadway.

November 22, 2007 11:09 a.m.
The Cartoon Network’s “Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends” float sings “You’re My Best Friend” as it floats by.

“Rabbit,” a 54 foot tall helium balloon, goes by.

Albertville High School Band performs “Oh! Susanna.”

Echo Unlimited’s float, Mt. Rhino, goes by with Ashley Tisdale singing “This Christmas.”

Sailing down Broadway is a giant balloon float of “Dora the Explorer.”

November 22, 2007 11:19 a.m.
Cotton’s cornucopia float has the Cherokee National Youth Choir singing “Jingle Bells” in their own language.

A giant Mr. Potato Head balloon float goes by.

The University of Oklahoma’s Marching Band performs as it goes by.

November 22, 2007 11:29 a.m.
The Huesca Brothers perform circus tricks in front of Macy’s.

The Big Apple Circus goes by on foot and float.

A giant balloon float of Pokemon Pikachu goes by. It’s the only float in the parade with illuminated cheeks.

Corbin Bleu sings on a Nasa float.

The Planter’s Nut-mobile drives down Broadway.

Baltimore’s Marching Band plays a tune as it walks by.

November 22, 2007 11:38 a.m.
Willard Scott drives in a 1920’s car with a 100-year-old woman who lived in an apartment above Macy’s department store.

“Give Me The Key To This Wonderful City” is performed by Michael Feinstein and Ankita.

Fifty members of the NYPD Marching Band walk by and play “Silver Bells.”

A snowman balloon float goes by.

A Carebears float goes by with Kay Hanley singing on it.

November 22, 2007 11:46 a.m.
The Tap Dancing Christmas Trees do 4,500 dance steps down Broadway during the parade.

Another marching band goes by playing “Babes in Toyland.”

A Gibson guitar float goes by with Wynonna Judd singing “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.”

A giant balloon float of Kermit the Frog floats 50 feet above the crowd.

November 22, 2007 11:54 a.m.
The Mike Miller Dance Team makes their 22nd consecutive appearance in the Macy’s Day Parade, dancing to “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”

“Pix” and “Charlie”, two giant elf balloon floats, go by just before a 50 foot sleigh with Santa Claus completes the parade.

News U Course–Math for Journalists

December 3, 2007

By: Jennifer Teuber

First and foremost, I have to say I was confused. I thought the News U course would involve a quiz at the end of each section, which it did not. It was not as interacitve as I expected.

The first few sections of the cousre offered background information and refreshers for those of us who haven’t done much math for the past few years.

Only when it got into percentages, ratios, means, medians, etc. did it actually seem like Math for Journalists. The most helpful parts, I think, were mean, median, and mode. Also, the section on ratio, rank, and rate.

By far I thought the most interesting and helpful section was the last section on Advanced topics. How to estimate crowds seemed exceptionally interesting to me, as well as the other two topics: weighted averages and cost of living.

All in all, the News U course was good reading, but I would have liked more involvement to keep it interesting. I got bored.

News U Reflection, Approaches to breaking news: Hurricane Katrina

December 2, 2007

By: Natalie Shultz

This course was broken up into different interactive sections. It displayed how different media outlets broke the news on Hurricane Katrina and it gave really good tips, whether you are a writer, editor, photographer, etc. Some themes across the board were keeping it short, keeping it simple, letting the viewers speak for themselves and always being prepared for anything.

1. Citizen journalism: Nola.com

-Be the hub of breaking news in your community: this site had blogs and forums about events like Mardi Gras in new Orleans, then it became a place for people to share stories about hurricane Katrina as well.

-Preparing for the worst: Nola’s servers are in New Jersey, which was important when the storm hit because they were still able to publish remotely.

-The collective consciousness and wisdom of the crowd: Donley (the editor)  turned his blog over to the city, where he posted stories sent to him about hurricane Katrina and the aftermath. Hearing people’s stories in their own words has a greater effect on people.

-The blog that saved lives: e-mails were sent to nola.com and a team of people were monitoring the site and forwarding the emails to the missing persons forum. The military monitored that forum and then would send rescue crews out.

 -Nola.com designers in NJ redesigned the site, removing mostly everything so that people wouldn’t have to sift through so much to find important information in the aftermath.  Reporters from the local newspaper posted their stories in blogs on the site also, which has made many of them change permanently to online.

 -Forums need to learn to accept problems: Stories need to be told by the people and everyone should at least experiment with forums, blogs, and community content management tools.

 -Now that people are rebuilding, the site has had to rebuild as well by adapting the site to remain relevant to the lives of new Orleans citizens.

 2. Resource usage, L.A. Times

-Brainstorming and research are essential.

-Small team of designers had one of first interactive maps up on latimes.com a few hours after storm

-Production, testing, publishing

-Lessons learned: Keeping it simple for speed’s sake, standard fonts and do not use new version of flash until 6 months after its release

3. Blog reporting, MSNBC

-Looking for a new way to tell the story: Sent live dispatches with slideshows, video, stills and audio to a blog.

-Be prepared: Bring more than one laptop and pocket pcs for internet connection.

-Send teams of 2 (one multimedia producer and one writer).

-Personal stories with the reporters written into the story worked well.

-Short is fine; casual updates throughout the day; don’t need to polish story like in print, don’t be formal-immediacy is the key; comment feature for readers.

-Make good use of photos, videos and audio: Nat sound, slideshows with audio sometimes can be more effective the video for storytelling purposes.

-Comment became a problem: Such a big load that they had to be moved to general comment area. Felt blog was being watered down and people not actually reading the content.

4. Video Documentary, Washington Post

-Perfecting the art of telling a story with 3 minutes or less of video: Digital recording equipment, laptops, lots of batteries; Need multiple communication options with newsroom; Needs to update often; Panoramic photos give a sense of connection to the location; Avoid narration; Interviews, footage of subject doing what they do, interaction; Keep it simple.

5. Use of templates, USA Today

-Timely redesign of hurricane package; Designed a flexible template; Used audio interviews with field reporters because it was quick; Gave it a super digest page with its own url; Pop up flash presentations made it easy for team to adapt.

6. Sounds and stills, Magnum in Motion

-Talk to the heart, not the brain; Multimedia presentations combining interviews with photographers and their photos; Didn’t want breaking news, put personal experiences and emotions; Photographers are natural storytellers; Find balance with ambient sound; Powerful images and real dialogue.