Joe Wilcox
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I am NOT an Old School Journalist

Dumb-ass me, something seriously needs explaining. If you follow my posts, they might seem all hoity-toity with respect to blogging versus journalism ethics and tactics—that Joe Wilcox clings to past methods while the future is about a new news paradigm. If you have that impression, and I take full responsibility for creating it, let me correct the record.

My book Responsible Reporting: Field Guide for Bloggers, Journalists, and Other Online News Gatherers lays out clear principles that anything but cling to the old guard. The audience, and building and maintaining trust with it, is in my view the news gatherer’s greatest responsibility. Putting audience trust before accuracy is anything but traditional. J Schools typically make seeking truth the journalist’s primary objective and ethical responsibility. In the contextual news era, audience matters more. [Read more]

Keyboard and Trackpad
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What is Clickbait?

My definition is the authoritative answer. Period. Journalists and their readers debate about what is clickbait, and also linkbait, and whether or not they are the same. They most certainly are not, and neither has a place in responsible journalism.

Both are constructs of the Google free economy—that is giving away valuable content subsidized by online advertising to get high search ranking. Problem: There is too much content, and too much of it alike, for ads to financially support. Excessive ad space means lower page rates and greater competition for advertisers. The shortage encourages even more clickbaiting and linkbaiting, which generate more pointless posts that suck limited advertising from high-value news content. [Read more]

iPhone 6's lens juts out from the body, risking damage. It's another reason for a case.
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What I sacrifice for iPhone 6

Over the weekend I started to seriously review my photos from Comic-Con 2014. Goddamn, there are some good ones—each and every taken with Nokia Lumia Icon, which is essentially identical to the 930 model reviewed by BetaNews colleague Mark Wilson. He panned the device because of Windows Phone 8.1; I’m in love because of the camera. But sometimes love is lost, and regretted. My sister has the Icon now.

I lug around iPhone 6, which camera by every measure that matters to me is inferior but one—startup shooting speed. Apple’s shooter can’t compete with the Icon. Fanboys will disagree, but, hey, they always will. The difference isn’t fewer megapixels—eight compared to 20—but the intelligence and usability baked into camera and editing app, lens, sensor, and choices the device makes when auto-shooting. [Read more]

Barber of Seville
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What the Hell is a Biter?

Not long ago, I considered myself still tapped into popular vernacular. I am a people and culture junkie, after all. But today, three barbers showed how clueless and out of touch is this 55 year-old man. I’m not sure which depresses more, the realization or confessing it.

My barber personalizes his workspace with Jack Daniels jars and other signature items described but I couldn’t see. Hey, he takes off my glasses to cut what little hair I have, and my vision blows without them. His coworker in the next chair complained about another guy who comes in to buy hair-cutting supplies and selfies in front of my barber’s chair space. The evidence is on Instagram. [Read more]

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A Storyteller Returns (Or So I Hope)

One of my favorite bloggers is photographer Carl Rytterfalk, whose voice silenced several years ago. But in a post overnight (in my time zone) he asks: “Am I back?” That’s a good question, which answer is complicated.

“In February 2013 my life changed dramatically with the early birth of my son who was born with the rare and somewhat difficult chromosome disorder named Trisomy 9 mosaic”, he writes about his absence. “Since William was born I’ve been using Facebook instead of rytterfalk.com and I think it should be the other way around. So I’m trying to convince myself that it’s ok for a while to post more from life and when ready—about photography, too”. [Read more]