THE BRITISH LIBRARY

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6 posts categorized "Images"

08 June 2016

News is beautiful

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Today's news may not always be happy, but it is often beautiful to look at. A new book, Visual Storytelling: Infographic Design in News, by Lu Yikun and Dong Zhao, shows how the rise in data journalism and reusable data sources has led to an explosion in infographics and data visualisations. These have been created by a skillful set of designers who can turn raw data into eye-catching illustrations that make better sense of the world while delighting the eye.

Visual

The book provides a background to the different types of data journalism design - pie charts, bar charts, radar charts, word clouds, 3D graphs, real-time maps and heat maps - and gives some of the history of the form. Mostly it is given over to sumptuous examples of news infographics produced by designers across the world. The index of artists at the back of the book provides web addresses, from which you can  discover the extraordinary array of work being done by what is, in effect, a new branch of professional journalism. Here are some examples (all of them illustrated in the book).

Body

Erik Nylund, 'The Average Resident in Helsingborg'. Reproduced with permission.

Erik Nylund is an infographics designer and illustrator, from Malmö, Sweden. His infographic, 'The Average Resident in Helsingborg', produced for Swedish newspaper Helsingsborgs Dagblad, takes data about the residents of Helsingborg and appositely presents the numbers as part of the anatomy of the resident (even down to one of four fingers conveniently expressing a figure of 26%).

Bond

 Erik Nylund, 'Statistics about James Bond Movies'. Reproduced with permission.

Nylund produced this infographic in response to a competition from the www.informationisbeautiful.net website, which provided data about James Bond movies and invited designers to express it creatively. It was published by the Swedish newspaper Sydsvenska Dagblade in 2012.

Workers

Ciaran Hughes, 'Workers Arise!' Reproduced with permission.

Ciaran Hughes is a Irish artist and designer, who has produced infographics for many newspapers, public and commercial sector clients. His 'Workers Arise!' was a front page graphic for the Daily Telegraph that accompanied an article on apprentices in the workplace. Its inspiration was the work of the great Russian graphic designer Alexander Rodchenko, and it makes powerful, symbolic use of the red bars and the worker's hand gripping a wrench - a model example of the coming together of theme and form.

Graph

Henrik Petterson, images from his series 'The Graph'. Reproduced with permission.

Henrik Petterson producers a regular infographic series for economia magazine, entitled 'The Graph'. Subtitled 'Britain in numbers: a statistical portrait of the month just gone', it illustrates not only how news information can be dynamically visualised, but shows by its regularity how it can function as a news service.

If you are interested to see more of the work of news infographic designers, here are some links to the individual designers mentions, some designer showcase sites and prominent news data sites:

Visual Storytelling boldly claims that "data journalism is the future of journalism".  It has certainly become an indispensable part of modern news production, and given the predicted rise in automated or robot journalism, we are likely to be seeing more and more of it. However, a robot is probably only going to provide us with bar charts. For wit, design flair, and deeper understanding, we are dependent on a talented group of designers, who like all good journalists, take raw observation and convert it into information and insight.  

Mapper

Political Meetings Mapper, produced using Open Street Map

A final thought is why the skills applied to create infographics out of current news data are not applied more often to historical news data? More and more is being done by researchers, here at the British Library and elsewhere, to undertake analyses of large-scale historical news data sets. There have been some visualisations produced, such as the maps generated by Dr Katrina Navickas for her Political Meetings Mapper project on 19th century Chartist meeting found in our newspaper archives. Machines are good at producing maps, but what more could be done if infographic designers could get their hands on such data? It's something we need to be exploring further.

13 June 2014

St Pancras Intelligencer no. 22

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Welcome to the latest edition of the St Pancras Intelligencer, our weekly round-up of news about news - stories about news production, publications, apps, digitised resources, events and what is happening with the newspaper collection (and other news collections) at the British Library.

Antisocial

Stop sharing this photograph of antisocial newspaper readers: This much retweeted and shared photograph of a train carriage full of newspaper readers has been viewed by many as a comment on an anti-social past age. Medium makes a strong argument why this is a complete misunderstanding of how a newspaper is consumed.

... what you are seeing in that picture of “antisocial” people reading newspapers is actually an eminently social activity: citizens keeping themselves informed so they can participate in the civic discourse of their community.

Enabling access to digitised historic newspapers: We held a Europeana Newspapers event here at the British Library, on assorted issues relating to the digitisation of newspapers, with interesting contrasts between traditional browsing and big data analytical approaches, and between free and paid access services. The link is to a Storify collection of tweets, links and slideshows from the day (fun to put together - will be doing more of these).

Broadcasting D-Day: The BBC's recreation of radio broadcasts from D-Day by using digitised scripts and actors (Benedict Cumberbatch, Toby Jones, Patrick Stewart) made a powerful impact and was a fitting tribute on the 70th anniversary of the landings. The BBC radio scripts come from the British Library, and this post gives the background.

 

Digital News Report 2014: Eagerly devoured and much commented upon has been the latest annual Reuters Institute Digital News Report, the result of a survey of digital news consumption in UK, US, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Denmark and Finland. Among the key findings are:

  • The use of smartphones and tablets has jumped significantly in the past year, with fewer people using their computers for news
  • More than a third of online news users across all countries (39%) use two or more digital devices each week for news and a fifth (20%) now say their mobile phone is their primary access point
  • US social sharing news sites like Huffington Post and Buzzfeed are beginning to make inroads around the world, with new formats and a fresh tone of voice aimed at younger people
  • Even so, traditional brands remain strong in most markets, with cross-platform newspaper reach averaging 75% in most countries
  • The number of people paying for digital news (11% average) has remained stable over the past 12 months, although there is a significant switch to more valuable ongoing digital subscription in most countries 
  • Of those paying for news in all countries, 59% are paying for an ongoing subscription (43% 2013). Of those who are not paying, 15% say they are likely to pay in the future
  • Facebook is by far the most important network for news everywhere
  • Although Twitter is widely used in the US, Spain, and the UK, it is far less influential in many other European countries. Google+ is emerging as increasingly important for news, along with messaging application WhatsApp

Robert Peston’s speech: Hotly discussed all week has been Robert Peston's British Journalism Review Charles Wheeler lecture, where he queries James Harding's statement (given in his WT Stead lecture at the British Library), "I think this is the most exciting time to be a journalist since the advent of television". Peston is not so sanguine, seeing threats in online culture, reader power, and the power of the public relations industry. He concludes:

...we don’t yet have what you might call a stable ecosystem in news. The poll-tax funded BBC is one kind of news-media model. The loss-making Guardian, funded by vast private-equity capital gains, is another. The Daily Mail another still. And Quartz, Huffington Post and BuzzFeed something different again. There is diversity – which all ecologists would tell you is vital to long-term survival. But there is also pollution, from a dangerous elision between news that pays and news that matters.

Why would anyone want to be a journalist?: But then there's Sarah Hartley at Contributoria, who speaks to several journalists about the hazards and frustrations of their occupation, and finds the answer to her question in these words from photographer Giles Duley (a triple-amputee after stepping on an IED in Afghanistan):

It’s about storytelling for me. There are these incredible stories out there and I think I follow a tradition that started around camp fires, in caves around ten thousands of years ago and there’s an innate need for people to tell stories and to hear stories and I just love being part of that tradition and so I’ll carry on doing it.

The Sun Launches A ÂŁ4.2 Billion Marketing Campaign?: The Sun is delivering a free special World Cup issue to 22 million UK homes over a 48-hour period (avoiding Hillsborough). Chris Brace at the Brown Moses blog notes that the giveway lacks the imprint that identifies the publication as a newspaper. The fine for breaching this legal requirement can be up to ÂŁ200 per copy. 200 x 22M = ÂŁ4.4Bn. That's a quite fine...

Not Everyone Is Happy About The Sun’s “This Is Our England” Front Page: Patrick Smith at Buzzfeed rounds up some less than complimentary reactions to the great free Sun giveaway. There's even a @PostTheSunBack campaign.

Internet not responsible for dying newspapers, new study finds: Riding against the general trend of argument is a paper by University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Matthew Gentzkow, which says that comparisons between the internet and newspaper are based on some false assumptions. ScienceDaily summarises these.

A year on Guardian continues to face derision from Fleet Street rivals over Edward Snowden revelations: Press Gazette reviews the opinions expressed about Edward Snowden in other British newspapers, which are distinctly unimpressed.

Time Inc. Has a Big Problem - So Does Digital Journalism: Derek Thompson at The Atlantic feels that the future looks bright for digital journalism as a product, but dim for large-scale digital journalism as a business.

 

Victorian Meme Machine: Bob Nicholson of Edge Hill University is one of two winners of our BL Labs competition for innovative ideas to use digital collections. His Victorian Meme Machine will create an extensive database of Victorian jokes, drawn from newspapers etc, and pair them with an appropriate image drawn from BL and other digital collections. 

Annotating the news: Intriguing piece by Jihii Jolly for Columbia Journalism Review on student news literacy and annotation tools.

The BBC was impervious to the launch of Sky News. Now they have to take notice: Ian Burrell at The Independent interviews Sky News editor John Ryley, who is full of plans, is disparagaing of ITV's attitude towards news, and states firmly: “The future for news is on mobile.”

European newspapers search for ways to survive digital revolution: A Guardian survey of how newspapers in Spain, France and Germany are struggling (belatedly) to find ways to make money as print sales plummet.

16 Pictures Of Beyoncé Where She’s Not Sinking In Quicksand: The Onion has launched Clickhole, its parody site for 'clickbait' viral sites like Buzzfeed and Upworthy. Not super-funny yet, but we have hope.

Why banish words from the front page?: The sharply opinionated Grey Cardigan on The Spin Alley blog is critical of sloppy front page design in some UK regional newspapers, and thoughtful on the reasons why.

Newspaper printed with ink that repels mosquitoes: This is such a heartening story - a Sri Lankan newspaper has come up with Mawbima Mosquito Repellent Paper, printed using bug-repelling ink, as part of campaign to help prevent the spread of Dengue fever. Probably a bit of a preservation challenge though...

Chatting with bots: How Slack is changing how newsrooms talk amongst themselves: Nieman Journalism Lab on Slack, a chat application being used in the newsrooms of  The Times, BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, Quartz, Slate, NBC News, The Guardian and more.

Kevin Turvey investigates ... the media: RIP Kevin Turvey, peerless investigative reporter from Reddtich, aka Rik Mayall.

18 April 2014

St Pancras Intelligencer no. 14

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Welcome to the latest edition of the St Pancras Intelligencer, our weekly round-up of news about news - stories about news production, publications, apps, digitised resources, events and what is happening with the newspaper collection (and other news collections) at the British Library.   

Dailymirror

Daily Mirror, 16 April 2014

The Mirror’s Crying Child Photo – Not All That it Seems: Ethical conumdrum and news image of the week was the Daily Mirror's hotly debated selection of an image of a crying child for a front page story on food parcels in Britain.  Blogger Dan Barker points out that the children isn't hungry (she was crying over an earthworm), she's American, and it was taken in 2009.

Pulitzer Prizes Awarded for Coverage of N.S.A. Secrets and Boston Bombing: Some would imprison them; others hand them garlands - The Washington Post and The Guardian have been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for public service for their reports based on the National Security Agency documents leaked by Edward Snowden. The Boston Globe won the breaking news prize for coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing, a year ago this week.

To the Snowden story system a crowning Pulitzer might have gone: No prizes should be awarded for the grammar in the title of Jay Rosen's article for his PressThink blog, but he argues that how the Snowden story was developed and shared internationally, outflanking national attempts to prevents its publication, is what merits a Pulitzer prize.

Tusrkey is a case study in the value of citizen journalists, thanks to the ones behind @140journos: Fascinating account by Mathew Ingram on how journalists use social media  in some countries when the traditional news media are perceieved to have failed - here the example of a citizien journalism initative in Turkey, crowdsourcing verification of poll results.

Appeals court says blogs are not only media, they're an important source of news and commentary: Mathew Ingram again, on the implications of a legal decision from a Florida court case on the status of blogs in a defamation case.

Digital journalism: we're still waiting for the third model of news publishing: Emily Bell asks what the recent launches in America of news sites such as Vox.com and the FiveThirtyEight mean for the development of the news media. 

Vox.com 's Melissa Bell: 'This is a chance to do journalism differently': Talking of which, Vox's co-founder Melissa Bell explains what the sites aims are, and what explanatory news (its special selling point) aims to achieve.

The IMPRESS Project's plans for press regulation: Journalism.co.uk reports on a crowdfunding initative to create a regulator for small regional and hyperlocal publishers.

 

Pathe Gazette's report on the evacuation from Dunkirk (1940), filmed by Charles Martin

British Pathé releases 85,000 film on YouTube: The British Pathé newsreel has released its entire archive of 3,500 hours of newsfilms 1896-1970 on YouTube. The films have all been available on the site www.britishpathe.com for twelve years, but this bold gesture should greatly increase their reach and profile.

A ... is for Advertising: The Newsroom blog gets its scond contributor, Jaimee McRoberts from the British Library's newspaper reference team, who kicks off an A-Z series on newspapers with Advertising.

The only way is ethics: Will Gore at The Independent is very interesting on the reporting of the Oscar Pistorious trial by the South African media, with its more permissive approach to what gets reported - and the different news imperatives between print and web news outlets.

Data journalism in Venezuela: Philip Smith at Media Shift tells how data journalism is developing in Venezuela, despite all of the hurdles:

... a visual history of violence in Venezuela; the relationship between Venezuela and Columbia in the trafficking of cocaine; analysis of various epidemics and outbreaks; live-tracking of how long ships sit in ports waiting to be unloaded of much-needed staples like sugar; an investigation into the paper shortage facing newspapers; a Twitter analysis of candidates in a recent election; and deep search into the network behind several Venezuelans who were charged in the U.S. for finance-related crimes, which was not well reported in Venezuela itself.

An enthusiastic, engrossing account.

Pickles pursues the wrong policy as people reject local newspapers: Thought-provoking piece from Roy Greenslade on the closure of a local paper (the Fulham & Hammersmith Chronicle), the supposed competition from the local council's free paper, and how demographics are as much of a theatre to local newspapers as rival news sources.

BBC is the most-shared news brand on Twitter: 96 million unique users in March 2014;  user figures up 26 per cent on the monthly average of 76 million; news stories shared 2.71 million times across the month on Twitter - the BBC website marches on, having celebrated its 20th anniversary last week. The Drum reports.

A print newspaper generated by robots: The Guardian has been experimenting with a limited edition printed newspaper - called #Open001 - that is produced by algorithms based on social-sharing activity. So the robots are gathering the stories, not writing them. Yet.

Well, this is hawkward: Hmm, how good are robots at spotting humour? Press Gazette gleefully reports how The Guardian was fooled by a Vatican April Fool's Day story (about hiring a hawk to protect the Pope's doves).

07 March 2014

St Pancras Intelligencer no. 8

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Welcome to the latest edition of the St Pancras Intelligencer, our weekly round-up of news about news - stories about news production, publications, apps, digitised resources, events and what is happening with the newspaper collection (and other news collections) at the British Library. 

Lorry

There's a long way to go, but the first lorry taking newspapers from Colindale, north London, to the British Library's Newspaper Storage Building, set off on March 4th. It'll take three such lorries every day for the next six months to move the entire collection to its new home.

7.5 million newspaper pages now online: Another milestone for British Library newspapers as the British Newspaper Archive reached 7.5 million pages available online (our target is 40 million).

Paparazzi! How an unloved profession has shaped us: Elizabeth Day at The Observer reports on a Paris exhibition dedicated to that most unloved (yet eagerly consumed)  part of news and magazine publishing, the paparazzi photographer.

Getty Images makes 35 million images free in fight against copyright infringement: Talking of photographs, here are 35 million of them, made available by Getty for  non-commercial usage by any one (the embedded images come with copyright information and link back to Getty). The British Journal of Photography explains why Getty is doing it. Doesn't work for Typepad though...

Reddit is having the same trouble as traditional media - defining what news is: Interesting piece from Mathew Ingram on how the use of moderators by Reddit is "no worse - and in some ways better - than that of a newspaper editor". The issue arose over a Glenn Greenwald piece entitled "How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet to Manipulate, Deceive, and Destroy Reputations", which Reddit decided didn't qualify as news.

Reddit embraces its role as a journalistic entity with new live-reporting feature: And more on Reddit from the same source, as it makes steps towards encouraging 'open source journalism' by allows users to create and update live blogs about breaking news events.

Can Greenwald's digital magazine Intercept help to reinvent journalism? Meanwhile, talking of Glenn Greenwald, here's Ben Cardew at The Guardian on First Look Media and its digital magazine The Intercept, aiming to reinvent journalism for the digital age, with Greenwald signed up as a contributor.

Russian propaganda and Ukrainian rumour fuel anger and hate in Crimea: Shaun Walker at The Guardian shows how the Russian's media's version of events in the Ukraine is fuelling hatreds. Meanwhile, not one but two American journalists working for the American version of Russia Today (now known as RT) have declared their opposition to reporting the Kremlin line, one of them resigning on air.

Propaganda, or the other side of the story?: But there is always the other side of things. Jay Pinho at The First Casualty looks at the sullied background of some of those who have been gleefully reporting the RT resignations.

Susanna Reid quits BBC for ITV as Daybreak is axed: A nation reels.

Newsweek makes its print return this week in the US and, soon, in Europe: When the US journal Newsweek went digital only, it was seen as a harbinger of doom for print journalism. Now it's is coming back in print, what are we to think about the future for digital age journalism?

Washington Post expands fact-checking project — and not just to movie trailers: Truth Teller is a Washington Post fact-checking platform in which ahows videos of speeches by politicians and the like, then runs text commentary underneath saying whether their assertions are true or not.

Business as usual on Page 3 as critics round on The Sun's breast cancer campaign: The Sun's Page 3 v Breast Cancer campaign does not impress the campaign site No More Page 3: "[W]e can’t help but feel that it’s a real shame the Sun has decided to use these sexualised images of young women to highlight breast cancer. They will say that they want to use the power of page 3 as a force for good – we say that a society in which sexualised images of young women are seen as that powerful has to change."

161 years a mistake: The New York Times solemnly referenced an article from 20 January 1853 in its Corrections column, noting that the name of Solomon Northup (subject of the Oscar-winning film 12 Years a Slave) had been misspelt twice.

07 February 2014

St Pancras Intelligencer no. 4

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Welcome to the latest edition of the St Pancras Intelligencer, our weekly round-up of news about news - stories about news production, publications, apps, digitised resources, events and what is happening with the newspaper collection (and other news collections) at the British Library.  

Graph
 

The year Facebook blew past Google: Peter Kafka notes how Facebook is now outstripping Google when its comes to referrals for Buzzfeed, which could have important implications for how web journalism works. Anyway, it's a great graph.

How I learned to stop worrying and love bite-sized news: Josh Stearns looks at short-form news services like Instafax, Circa and NowThis News and reckons they have their part to play in how we find news - "sometimes small pieces loosely joined can add up to more than the sum of their parts".

How the BBC and Guardian are innovating on Instagram: More on the use of Instagram by news outlets, with Rachel Bartlett reviewing Instafax and GuardianCam.

Help us improve the British Newspaper Archive: The BNA has a survey, asking you how you use the historical newspapers site and what you would like to see more of.

News Archive Connected Studio: Interesting things are being plotted at the BBC to open up its news archives. Peter Rippon reports on ways they might connected news archive to audiences.

UK Parliament considers allowing secret courts to issue orders to seize reporters' notebooks: The Deregulation Bill could lead to the seizure of journalists' notebooks, photographs and digital files in secret hearings, as opposed to open court as is the case now. Cory Doctorow is alarmed.

The secret to having a successful paywall around your news is simple - it's about community: Mathew Ingram looks at the success of Dutch crowdfunded journalism site De Correspondent, which is bringing in almost $2M per year in subscriptions.

News UK boss critical of Mail and measurement: It's been a week where those who see paywalls as the future of news journalism have been having their say. The Media Blog reports on Mike Darcey, CEO of News UK, criticising the Mail Online business model:

The Mail Online is the embodiment of the school of thought which says flooding the internet with tacky clickbait to attract huge audiences can be profitable while Darcey is clearly a man who believes in ringfencing smaller, more identifiable audiences behind paywalls, such as those imposed on The Sun and The Times.

Tim Franklin, incoming president of the Poynter Institute likewise praises the paywall models of the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Have 24-hour news channels had their day?: This Guardian piece by Richard Sambrook and Sean McGuire makes some familiar arguments against 24-hour TV news (filling time when there is no news, becoming out-dated by social media, not really 'live' etc). Sky News' Adam Boulton tweeted angrily in response: "@sambrook's @mediaguardian blog on 24hr news: shoddy inaccurate generalizations timed for @SkyNews 25th but can hardly bear to mention us".

The Syrian opposition is disappearing from Facebook: Facebook's decision to shut down some pages of Syrian opposition has "dealt  significant blow to peaceful activists who have grown reliant on Facebook for communication and uncensored—if bloody and graphic—reporting on the war’s atrocities", reports Michael Pizzi at The Atlantic.

How do hyperlocals contribute to local democracy and what do they need?: Those watching new news trends in the UK are excited by the hyperlocal trend for community-based websites. The Creative Citizens project at at Cardiff University and Birmingham City University has launched a survey aiming to learn more about the pratice and needs of neighbourhood websites.

Over one million TV and radio programmes now available for education: Previously we used to be thrilled when thousands of items were released online - now everyone seems to deal in millions. So one million TV and radio programmes are now available from the UK higher education service BoB National, thanks to collaboration with the BBC. Not available to general users though, alas.

 

31 January 2014

St Pancras Intelligencer no. 3

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Welcome to the third edition of the St Pancras Intelligencer, our weekly round-up of news about news - stories about news production, publications, apps, digitised resources, events and what is happening with the newspaper collection (and other news collections) at the British Library.  

EzraKleinCropped

Ezra Klein (Wikimedia Commons)

Vox is our next: Generating much discussion in America has been the move of celebrated journalist and political blogger Ezra Klein from the Washington Post to Vox Media with plans to develop a news site that (so far as one can tell from the sketchy ideas offered so far) will draw out the historical content behind news stories from content online. The New Yorker lauds the rise of the digital journalist (Klein is 29); the always interesting Mathew Ingram at Gigaom looks at the advertising model that could support it.

The newsonomics of why every seems to be starting a news site: Ken Doctor looks at the economics of why Klein and others are getting into the online news game and hiring journalists. Essentially the risks are high but the entry costs are low.

Q&A with newspaper researchers: Leon Saltiel: The latest in Europeana Newspapers' fine series of interviews with researchers using newspaper archives is with Leon Saltiel, who is researching World War Two in Thessaloniki

So much for 'news without the boring bits': Trinity Mirror's The People set up a Buzzfeed-style site with aim of publishing news without the boring bits and with ambition to be entirely funded by "native content". It lasted three months

You won’t believe why the Victoria Line is currently suspended: But Trinity Mirror's other Buzzfeed-style effort, UsVsTh3m is flourishing with such viral stories as fast-setting concrete in the signalling room holding up the Victoria Line

Introducing #GuardianCam on Instagram: Guardian journalists will be taking over its Instagram account each week to showcase stories from around the world

World War One: The British Library has published its World War One resource, based around key themes from the war, and amply illustrated with over 500 digital objects, including manuscripts, illustrations, photographs, maps, letters and newspapers

LBC to go national: On 11 February LBC will go national and become the UK's first commercial news talk radio station.

What is the news? Philosopher Alain de Botton argues in this video (and in a Newsnight discussion)  that the news is a "powerful questionable art form" the comprehension of which needs to be taught in schools (thereby annoying the media studies community who are dedicated to doing just that). De Botton has a book out on on the theme, and Ian Jack's review in The Guardian is scathing ("A kind of fluent ignorance is at work that might be innocence in disguise." Ouch)

Cardiff Uni to run free online community journalism course: Hyperlocal news sites now being all the range, Cardiff are going to offer a free MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) in community journalism

 

Facebook announces Paper: Anyone can publish their own version of what's news, and attractively so. On February 3 Facebook launches the nostalgically-named Paper, a customisable news reader app similar to Flipboard

The News Academy: News UK (News International as was) has launched the News Academy to train teenagers keen to become journalists

A faster, easier way: Twitter, CNN and Dataminr are working together to develop an alert system for journalists, reports the Twitter blog

Hacking trial: The sorrier side of the news was laid bare once again with the evidence supplied by self-confessed phone hacking journalist Dan Evans, formerly of the Sunday Mirror and News of the World. Even the "office cat" knew about what was going on, he claims

Broke French crime reporter turns to hold ups: The news about news story of the week has to be the tale of Jean-Michel, the former crime reporter who tried to turn his knowledge to bad use when he turned criminal (unsuccessfully). The story was reported by his former newspaper, naturally.