Archives for category: journalism 2.0

In my last post about podcasts, I was a little iffy about them. But after looking into it a little more, I’ve found a few that are actually pretty interesting. One of these is Rick Steves’ Audio Europe. Rick Steves has produced more than 50 guidebooks on European travel, and has both a television and radio show. Many American travelers look to Rick Steves for advice on how to become a “temporary local” in the city or country they are visiting. He is known for helping travelers connect more intimately with Europe, and for a fraction of the tourist price. His podcast channel offers advice for travel to Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain, among other places. Each of these sub-channels offer several episodes on specific regions or traditions in the country.

I listened to an episode in the Rick Steves’ Spain sub-channel, called Sevilla and Andalucia. In the episode, Rick Steves speaks with native Spanish travel guide Federico Garcia Barroso and Sevilla native Concepción Delgado. The episode offers a ton of great advice for visitors, from food suggestions to transportation options.

Rick Steves’ podcast channel is perfect for the train or plane ride on the way to your travel destination. Listen to the Sevilla and Andalucia podcast below, and if it’s something you might enjoy, subscribe the channel at

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Now that the semester is almost over, I’m finally getting the hang of posting regularly. In the beginning, I thought a lot about what I was going to say and what I was going to talk about. Now I just write. After all, isn’t that what blogs are for?

In the first week of my Journalism 2.0 class, we learned that blogs are personal websites that provide updated headlines and news articles of other sites that are of interest to the user, and that may also include journal entries, commentaries and recommendations compiled by the user. I think I’ve managed to do that. I’ve written some posts about new media tools, mainly for the class portion of this blog, and I’ve also written a ton of journal entries about my experience overseas. Maybe my headline/news article posts could be a little better, but hey, I’m not trying to be an established blogger in the political world. I’m writing this for my friends and family back home. They want me to know what I’m doing with my life 5000 miles away from home, and that’s what I’m trying to get across.

I do, though, have to hand it to the guys who have really made it in the blogosphere. This is way harder than you’d think! I’ve somehow managed to get almost 500 views, plus a few subscribers and comments along the way, and I call that success. But there are blogs out there whose writing attracts thousands of readers, each and every day.

Are you blogging? If not, I encourage you to give it a shot. Sign up now at

Before today, I had never really explored the world of podcasts. I had heard of them, but I had no idea what they actually were. In my head, I envisioned podcasts as some kind of book-on-tape 2.0, and who really listens to those except for kids who can’t read and old people? But when I looked at podcasts on iTunes, one of the biggest podcast aggregators, I was pleasantly surprised. The site offers way more than children’s books and NPR. You can listen to sports broadcasts from ESPN, find out random facts from, and even learn a foreign language from one of the many language courses.

But why listen to a podcast when you can watch the actual show or see the actual event take place? The main advantage of podcasts is how portable they are. They are available when you want, where you want and as you want. Perfect for the morning metro commute or walk to class. Plus, you can subscribe to a certain podcast and automatically receive new episodes as they are released. They may sound boring or weird, but if you check it out I promise you will find something you like.

I don’t like to think I’m being used as a tool for any big corporation. But after learning about the “evangelist customer” in class, I am just that. A great one. And you probably are too.

We all have those products we just can’t get stop talking about. And for some reason, we get really offended when people speak badly about them. Maybe the most prominent example in today’s society is the Mac v. PC debate. If there’s ever a Mac/PC argument in my vicinity, I’ll confess my profound love for my MacBook. But why? I’ve used PC laptops before and they’re just as functional. There’s just something about Apple that has me hooked. I would also say that my iPod is better than your Zune, and the iPhone is better than the Android.

Other products evoke these same feelings and loyalties. People obsess over Starbucks Coffee, and many will label themselves as a strictly Coke or strictly Pepsi drinker. Car companies are the same way.

Evangelism marketing is turning into a key concept of marketing 2.0. These customers aren’t getting paid to spread good things about the product – they’ve simply developed a strong brand loyalty that they find worth bragging about. Their opinions on a product are 100% credible. Every company wants to find evangelist customers to get their name out there.

So what about you? Are you an evangelist customer?

It’s no secret that Barack Obama revolutionized the political campaign. He used the internet and social media in a way that no candidate ever had before. And it paid off.

Previously, presidential candidates looked to corporations and wealthy individuals who could make $2,000+ contributions. This isn’t what Obama did. Instead, he reached out to regular people like us using tools like Facebook, Twitter and By the end of the campaign, he had raised $122 million in individual contributions less than $200, making a record-setting total of $264.5 million. McCain raised $88.2 million.

Now that Obama has paved the way for online campaigns, there’s no going back. A candidate will never succeed without posting on a blog or communicating via Facebook. I’m not saying that Obama won solely because of his use of social media, but it certainly helped. Social networks allowed him to connect, literally, with millions of people that he wouldn’t have reached otherwise.

It will be interesting to see where we will go from here. Will these tools have as big of an impact once everyone is using them? Only time will tell. But anyone running for election in 2012 better put their thinking caps on – they have big virtual shoes to fill.

My teacher, Pipo Serrano, works for Catalunya Radio, and he took our class to visit the station last week. I imagined it to be a lot like NPR, but I was wrong. It kind of reminds me of the BBC, which doesn’t really have an American radio equivalent.

Catalunya Radio consists of four distinct stations: Catalunya Radio, Catalunya Música, Catalunya Informació and iCat fm. Música is obviously a music station, which concentrates on classical and contemporary music. Informació is Spain’s first all-news radio station, and iCat is a multimedia station promoting both traditional and contemporary culture.

Here’s a clip from Pipo’s show – Tot és molt confús. Sorry, it’s in catalan!

My phone died last night, and it was the end of the world. I couldn’t meet up with my friends without being able to BBM them, and I couldn’t find my way around without my Google Maps app. I don’t know how people survived way back when.

In class a few weeks ago we talked about the “Information Society” that we live in, and I can’t even imagine living without it. This society depends on everyone, not just the mass media, to inform and disseminate information. All social actors appear as information emitters and receivers, so the more people that use it, the better it works.

It’s truly amazing how much technology has changed our lives. I’m on Google a thousand times a day, I download music from bittorrents and I share all my photos on Photobucket. And if I can’t use my phone for BBM, Twitter, Facebook, whatever, we have problems. Some people criticize my generation for being constantly “wired,” but honestly, I think it’s a great thing. Like I’ve said before, Twitter is one of my main sources of news. It’s never been easier to be informed or keep in touch. Anyone who doesn’t jump on this information bandwagon is going to find themselves left in the dust – we can only move forward from here.

We have grown accustomed to multimedia accompanying our news. News organizations can’t get away with simply reciting the facts. We want charts, we want photos, we want videos. And now, a lot of online news websites are taking it a step further and producing full-blown multimedia stories. These are different than regular news stories because they are non-linear. You don’t have to read top to bottom, left to right. If you want to start with the text, you start with the text. If you want to watch an interview, you watch the interview. These stories are a lot more appealing to the eye and provide more varied information than traditional news stories.

Confused? Check out these multimedia stories to see for yourself:

Talking to the Taliban

Two Tours of Magnolia Plantation

Can anyone be a journalist? With the recent explosion of “citizen journalism,” this question has been the center of many debates in my journalism classes at IU. Journalists defend journalism as a professional discipline, but the activity taking place in the blogosphere can’t be ignored.

Citizen journalism exploded with the terrorist attacks on 9/11 and has been propelled into the spotlight with events like the Hudson River plane crash. But are the people uploading this content really journalists?

CNN’s iReport is the closest these people have come to being “journalists.” iReport is a completely user-generated section of, and the stories are not edited, fact-checked or screened. But holding the title of “journalist” requires a certain credibility that citizen journalists can’t claim. They make a meaningful contribution to society, but they will never completely replace those who study to work in the field.

By now everyone knows what Twitter is. Brief text updates, 140 characters or less, that appear in reverse chronological order. And now that twitter is available on most cell phones, tweeting is easier than ever.

I’ve had a twitter account for almost a year, but I have to admit, I’m not the most responsible tweeter. Most of my tweets are sent after 11 p.m., and I hardly say anything worth talking about. Honestly, I don’t know how I have any followers. But in class this week we talked about how to use twitter as a useful social network.

Most of my friends that I follow on twitter post personal updates about what they’re doing, or funny things they have seen or heard. But, unlike facebook, your “friends” aren’t the only people you can follow. Most celebrities, public figures, and even news networks have twitter accounts. You can find out what Kim Kardashian ate for breakfast, your senator’s take on a current issue, and CNN’s breaking headline, all in one place. And twitter might even get you 15 minutes of fame. When the plane crashed in the Hudson River a few years ago, the first picture of the accident was uploaded to Twitpic.

For those of you who aren’t already tweeting, here’s a cool video.