WINOL: Features Archive

At the age of just 15, Paul Blackburn was wrongfully imprisoned for 25 years. Presented, edited and produced by Tom Morgan.

Media Law - Year Three Notes Archive

A collection of posts looking at media law, including tips for journalists, case examples and information on the various codes of conduct. Click here for more.

American Election 2012 - US Embassy Report

Myself, Lee Jarvis, Sam Sheard and Kirsty McDonagh spent the evening at the US Embassy as part of WINOL's coverage of the 2012 American election.

Work Experience: The One Show

This blog post serves as a summary of what I got up to during my time at the BBC and also provides some information on how the One Show is run.

Work Experience: PC Advisor

After breaking up from University for the summer, I arranged two separate work experience placements to keep me occupied over the break. The first of these placements was at PC Advisor in London.

Work Experience: Basingstoke Gazette

After breaking up from University for the summer, I arranged two separate work experience placements to keep me occupied over the break. The second of these placements was at the Basingstoke Gazette.

HCJ Notes Archive: Year One and Year Two

A collection of lecture notes, seminar papers and seminar summaries from Year One and Year Two on the HCJ course at the University of Winchester

Sunday, 30 October 2011

WINOL - Week #5 Notes


WINOL - Week 5 Analysis

Week 5 consisted of me being handed an interesting story and not really doing it justice.

The prospect of a 'zombie module' coming to the University of Winchester and a day of lectures discussing the undead and their impact on popular culture. It's something interesting, which is why it's a shame I didn't really get a nice rememberable quote from my interviewee.

My possibilities were limited when it came to GV's. WINOL goes out on a Wednesday and the Zombosium wasn't taking place until 2 days after that. From there my only option was to have some footage of the recent Zombie walk in Brighton.

I went to YouTube and messaged the account of a person who had taken some footage of the event. He gave me written permission to use his footage in my package, which was good. It gave the viewers something to look at other than shots of the campus. I don't, however, like using footage that wasn't shot by me. It's like cheating your way through a story, grabbing montage clips from various archives on the net. It's a shame the actual Zombosium event wasn't before the broadcast.

This week was a little disappointing.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Freud - Seminar Summary

Born in 1856 into an Austrian family, Sigmund Freud was one of the most influential and controversial thinkers associated with the twentieth century. His theories on sexuality and the application of therapy still have an impact on society today.

Freud initially trained as a doctor, studying what he referred to as 'brain anatomy'. In 1895, he published a work in partnership with Breur on hysteria, which presented 'an original analysis of mental illness'. The pairs book explained that every case of hysteria had a correlation with an individuals traumatic past experience. Freud was also of the opinion that sexual desires had a role to play here, but his mentor refused to acknowledge this theory.

Eventually, Freud stopped using hypnosis as a form of treatment and instead decided to turn to what he called psychoanalysis. In Freud’s own words, psychoanalysis was 'nothing more than an exchange of words between patient and doctor'. Patients were encouraged to talk about anything that came to their mind and the information revealed could then be interpreted. The approach furthers human understanding of the role of emotions in health, also stressing the importance that the past can shape the present. Freud would undoubtedly argue that as people, we are constantly engaged in a process of psychological development from birth.

From his work, Freud concluded that psychological trauma stemmed from Infancy. There was also a sexual element present. His ideas were a direct challenge to the age of enlightenment, a time fixated with the idea of rationality. Psychoanalysis is based on the concept that individuals are often unaware of their true feelings and the factors that determine these feelings and behavioural patterns.

Freud published a number of works during his life. In 1900, he wrote “The Interpretation of Dreams”. Freud opens the book with an introduction to dreams, writing: "In the following pages I shall demonstrate that there is a psychological technique which makes it possible to interpret dreams, and that on the application of this technique every dream will reveal itself as a psychological structure, full of significance, and one which may be assigned to a specific place in the psychic activities of the waking state."

In 1923 “The Ego and the Id” was released, then “The Future of An Illusion” in 1927. This last work was particularly controversial as it explored the idea of religion in great detail. Freud himself was an atheist, which shaped much of the content of the book and the way in which the subject was approached. Freud describes in his book how religionists cannot succeed in disproving the idea that the gods in which they place their faith in are more than products of their own minds, adapted to suit their needs. In 1932 in 'New Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis' Freud stated: "Religion is an illusion and it derives its strength from the fact that it falls in with our instinctual desires." Religion itself is a particularly good representation of the superego (In the way it's based upon a number of moral principles) but we'll come to that in a short while.


Freud suffered from mouth cancer since 1923 and was told his condition was inoperable

Freud believed the unconscious was manifested from a combination of three elements. The first of these he called 'everyday trivial mistakes'. In Freud's view, these 'mistakes' were not actually accidental. Instead, they revealed hidden motives of the unconscious. Forgetting to remember a name or a slip of the tongue, for example, could actually just be referred to as a 'Freudian Slip'. The second element Freud discussed was the conclusions drawn from reports of dreams. The final ingredient concerns the symptoms of neurosis, a psychological and behavioural disorder in which anxiety is a primary characteristic.

Freud also published his theory concerning sexual development. The theory states that from birth to our first year, we are within the 'oral stage'. During this time period, there is a fixation on the mouth and all pleasure is focused on the mouth. Next, between the age of 1 to 3 years, comes the 'anal stage'. At this point in the time line of sexual development, there is a primary focus on controlling bowel and bladder movements. The final stage is referred to as the 'phallic stage', where the child focuses or their own penis / clitoris.

Now we come to the Oedipus Complex. The theory states that a young boy will focus sexual desire on his mother. Furthermore, the child resents his fathers possession of his mother. The child’s anger towards the father leads the child to fear castration from the father's retaliation. Freud had no doubt in his mind that there was a female equivalent, but this was something that he never fully explored. For the complex to be overcome, Freud explained,  the child would have to identify with the same-sex parent.


Freud's work has contributed to our understanding of clinical psychology and human development

Next up is the idea of the Freudian Personality. This consists of three elements: The Id, the ego and the superego. The Id is the animalistic part of our personality. Primarily, it is driven by sex and aggression, which are dominating forces. The ego (our self) is the weakest part of our personality. It serves as a voice of reason, constantly battling the Id. The superego comprises of internalised rules from both our parents and society as a whole.

Freud outlined a number of coping mechanisms, however didn't really recommend them as they were merely temporary fixes. These included intoxication, isolation and sublimation. The first two are fairly self explanatory, but the theme of sublimation can be explored a little further.

Sublimation refers to the idea of finding a socially acceptable way of releasing our aggression. Ultimately, sublimation gives us a way of unleashing our animalistic qualities (our Id) without punished for doing so.

Freud - Raw Notes



Freud to Derrida

* Kant and Hegel were a massive influence in British Universities
* Very few philosophers described themselves as 'Freudian'.

Freud


* Born 1856
* Died 1939 - Lethal injection that he requested
* "Born into an Austrian family of non-observant Jews"
* Trained as a doctor, initially to study brain anatomy
* 1886 - Private medical practice
* 1895 - Published a work with Breur on hysteria - "presented an original analysis of mental illness"
* Freud stopped using hypnosis as a form of treatment and instead decided to turn to what he called psychoanalysis
* Psychoanalysis - "Nothing more than an exchange of words between patient and doctor"
* Patients were encouraged to talk about anything that came to mind
* Decided psychological trauma stemmed from Infancy. Had sexual content.
* 1900 - Published "The Interpretation of Dreams"
* 1923 - Published "The Ego and the Id"
* Atheist
* 1927 - "The Origin of Illusion" - Controversial account of the origin of religion

The Unconscious


Manifested through:

1) Everyday trivial mistakes
2) Reports of dreams
3) Symptoms of neurosis

Sexual Development


1) Oral (birth-1 year) - Pleasure focused on the mouth
2) Anal (1-3 years) - Pleasure focused on controlling bladder / bowel movements
3) Phallic (3-6 years) - Child focuses on own penis or clitoris

The Oedipus Complex 

The theory states:

* Boy focuses sexual desire on mother
* Resent father's possession of mother
* Child's anger towards father leads child to fear castration from father's retaliation
* Because of this, boy abandons sexual feelings towards his mother and learns to identify with the father
* Freud had no doubt there was a female equivalent, but this was never fully explored

Ego / Mental Disorder


"So long as the ego is in harmony with the Id, all will be well". If harmony is not there, mental disorders will develop.

Freud's Attacks


Against Plato:

Followed Plato's idea of the tripartite self - Reason, spirit, desire.
* Plato = Believed reason could rule the other
* Freud = Reason was the weakest because people are irrational

Against Marx:

* Marx = Believed of the infinite potential of human nature and its ability to develop
* Freud = Rejects this. It's too idealistic

Freudian Personality


1) Id - The animal part of our personality. Sex and aggression are dominating forces
2) Ego - (or our self) The weakest part of the personality. The voice of reason. The ego constantly battles the Id
3) Superego - Internalised rules from our parents and society. Unrealistic standards imposed.

Copying Mechanisms


1) Intoxication
2) Isolation
3) Sublimation (finding socially acceptable releases for anger)

WINOL - Week #4 Thoughts



WINOL - Week 4 Analysis

So week 4 has been and gone and it was easily the most stressful week I've had since we started.

My original plan was to pursue a story about a local war memorial set to be erected at the Peninsula Barracks. The plans for the monument itself hadn't been called off, there was another reason I couldn't carry on with that story. I was unable to follow the story further after I spoke to somebody at the area who informed me the curators of the project were based in Kent. I'm sure I could have organised an interview over the phone, but I wouldn't have been able to get a video interview and therefore it couldn't have been in the bulletin.

I was then given the admittedly not-as-fun task of taking the national story about rising energy bills and presenting the story on a local level. This was certainly easier said than done. At this stage it was Tuesday afternoon and I had no footage, no nothing. I tried to keep a level head about the whole situation and managed to do this in the end, but it was particularly difficult being so close to the deadline and having no content at all.

After pestering and pestering and pestering a certain group I was able to organise an interview on Wednesday morning. The person I interviewed even told me that I was 'only there because of my persistance'. I took this as a good thing as, at the end of the day, I'd managed to nab an interview with about an hour to go until my deadline.

In the newsroom, it was just as stressful. My footage went from OOV to VT, VT to OOV. Back and fourth, back and fourth. Eventually, I found myself as the second story which was admittedly completely unexpected. Considering I had nothing on Tuesday afternoon / evening I thought I'd done well to find a minute of footage from somewhere on Wednesday morning. 

The package itself was far from perfect and I'm fully aware of that. I think it would have worked better as an OOV, perhaps. Unfortunately, we couldn't afford to have another OOV in the bulletin as there were already a couple.

Summary? A Stressful week and a decent package that was thrown together terrifyingly close to the deadline.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

WINOL - Week #3 Thoughts


Winol - Week 3 Analysis

Another week at Winol and things are slowly starting to look better. First of all, I thought the overall bulletin as a whole was our best one so far. It wasn't without its issues, but it was a vast improvement on Week 2.

My video package was decent. Not amazing, really. There are a number of things I thought I did poorly. It was pointed out to me that some of my sequences were quite dull. I think that's a fair criticism. I think my main issue with getting stories is I never collect enough GV's. It's much better to have a large selection of shots to pick and choose from rather than just afew that you have to repeatedly use or slow down to give the viewers something to look at.

I'm going to aim to get alot more GV's to pick and choose from in the future. Another thing I thought was pretty silly was how I ended my package with "Only time will tell..". It seemed unprofessional and it sort of just left the story in the air. It didn't really give the package a solid conclusion. That needs fixing.

I'm still yet to produce something I'm really genuinely pleased with, which is frustrating. I suppose if there's anything positive to take away from my experiences so far is that I'm certainly learning from the mistakes I'm making. I'm starting to get into the swing of things in terms of timing, editing and approaching new stories. Saying that, however, my story balance needs improving.


Sunday, 9 October 2011

WINOL - Week #2 Thoughts


Winol - Week 2 Analysis

So we've just had our second week of WINOL and it certainly wasn't an easy ride.

Obviously, we're still fairly new to the whole procedure, but that's no excuse for not getting the bulletin out on time. On a personal note, I could have done a couple of things better that would not only have helped me out, but also the rest of the team.

Firstly, my drone package. I thought it was a promising piece. There were some nice 'sequences' tucked away in there and some good footage courtesy of the University of Southampton that I was able to use with permission. As was pointed out, however, the fact that I didn't name my interviewee was slightly fishy. It's clearly an issue because it leads people to question where I got the quote from. Obviously, I know the source is genuine, but the audience don't.

I've since spoken to Rachel (The name of the girl I interviewed in the package) and she has given me permission to use her full name. Better late than never, I suppose. I've taken advantage of this and put her full name in my written version of the package. I may re-record the link for the video version of the story so It's safe to upload to YouTube or wherever else.

Secondly, my audio. In terms of levels, it was a big improvement from last time. The volume remained at a steady level and there were no sudden dips in the quality of my voice either. Frustratingly (I'm still kicking myself for this) the audio captured from my Skype interview would not transmit through the sound system in the gallery. It was completely unexpected because the audio was fine during editing and even after being rendered / exported. I checked the package multiple times before handing it over to the production team, and was bloody annoyed when it wouldn't work in the studio.

I still have no idea why this happened so I'll look into it. Strange. My only guesses to potential solutions would be to either render the Skype interview audio separately or alternatively save it in a different format. Either way, it's too late now and that's really disappointing.

Fingers crossed next week runs a little smoother. Although I had issues with my audio, I thought my video was miles better than my first piece for WINOL.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Tabloid Nation - Seminar Paper (October 2011)

Alfred Harmsworth, also known as Lord Northcliffe, was an incredibly influential man in the world of Journalism, demonstrating a vast knowledge of the industry and an ability to write content that would appeal to a mass market. Harmsworth knew what would sell papers and what would get people talking. This, ultimately, was the key to his success.

Harmsworth was the son of an English barrister and was born in 1865 near Dublin. He was particularly close to his mother who he idolised a great deal. The Daily Mirror offices, 'Geraldine House', were named after her.

Academically, Alfred was nothing special. It was not until his first publication 'Answers' that his career in the newspaper industry truly began to gather momentum. Answers to Correspondents on Every Subject Under the Sun, or 'Answers' for short, was his very first magazine.

Published in 188, It was a quirky publication looking at facts and figures from around the world. A year after its arrival, Harmsworth launched a competition which gave readers the chance to win £1 a week for life. To be in with a chance of winning, readers had to guess the value of gold and silver in the Bank of England at the time, which clearly, was near impossible. Nearly 750,000 postcards from hopeful readers were sent in, which proved the competition was a massive success for the paper. Sadly for 'Answers', however, it was decided the following year that prize competitions based merely on readers guessing was illegal.

The magazine was home to some peculiar articles, one of which included: 'Why don't Jews ride bicycles?'. It was this unusual but intriguing formula that slowly began to draw people in. Soon enough, the magazine began to grow. People found offers of free money and the promise of gifts attractive, and 'Answers' reeled in these characters. 


Pictured above: Daily Mail founder Sir Alfred Harmsworth

Harmsworth's first involvement with a national newspaper was for the Daily Mail. It went through several stages of vigorous planning and testing on potential buyers before it was launched in May 1896.

It was decided articles in the paper were not to exceed 250 words. Addressing his staff, Harmsworth explained that State-funded board schools were 'turning out hundreds of thousands of boys and girls annually who [could] read'. He added that such people had no interest in 'the ordinary penny newspaper', instead favouring news that was interesting and 'sufficiently simple'.

The paper did particularly well at its launch, selling almost 400,000 copies on its opening day. Alfred soon became editor-in-chief, working alongside editor Kennedy Jones, who was famous for his writing on the Dreyfus Affair. Jones, also known as 'The Chief', introduced a women's section to the paper, which did so well it led to the arrival of a daily morning paper aimed at women - The Daily Mirror.

The Daily Mirror was struggling for a number of reasons, mainly because not only were there too many people working on the paper, but there were also doubts over the quality of the writing.

It was Hannen Swaffer that made it his job to transform the struggling women's paper into something fresh. Soon the disastrous ladies paper was transformed into a 'picture paper'. Sales shot up to just under 1 million in a few years. Shaffer, although seemingly unapproachable and out-of-control, managed to sway around the office half drunk and still get things done. He was a heavy drinker, a left wing-man supporting the labour party his whole life.

In 1904, Hamilton Fyfe hired Swaffer for the relaunch of the Daily Mirror into the 'Illustrated Daily Mirror'. Circulation shot up after the paper published shots of King Edward VII with his wife and children. From there, the new-look paper continued to sell well, and Fyfe was soon replaced by Alexander Kenealy. Swaffer made it his role to focus on what was written, while Kenealy stuck to finding the best photographs.

Swaffer always had a want and a need to publish the best, most exciting pictures, telling his team without hesitation to get into dangerous situations if it meant grabbing an exciting action shot. The paper struck gold after managing to get pictures of King Edward VII on his deathbed. Naturally, this was massive news. The paper printed a front page photo of the King's head as he lay peacefully. The paper sold out as soon as it went public, and even after special editions had been printed there was still not enough to satisfy demand. It was massive news for the paper, which was then selling a world record of over 2,000,000 copies.

Following the action by the paper, the question was raised as to how the royal family would react to the pictures going public. Amusingly, Swaffer and Kennealy were not phased as a backlash would only make news and therefore improve circulation.

The stress of running such a high demand paper took its toll on the team on more than one occasion. Swaffer's arguments with both Northcliffe and Kenealy became frequent. Following news of the sinking of the Titanic, Swaffer rushed out to buy photos of the ship before news of the disaster became widely known. Swaffer felt that the pictures should be showcased all over the paper, but he was overruled by Northcliffe who felt the photos should be complimented by a written piece.

Swaffer and Northcliffe continued to argue which led to Swaffer sacking himself and joining rival publication, the Daily Sketch. After Northcliffe's death in 1922, Swaffer went on to publish a book explaining how he was not to blame for any of the pairs disagreements. Interestingly, the book featured a conversation with the deceased chief, which was unsurprising as Swaffer had chosen to embrace spiritualism.


Above: An issue of the Daily Sketch, which was founded in Manchester

In 1905 Harmsworth took the title of Baron Northcliffe after donating money and giving his political backing to the Liberal party. At the age of 40, he decided to pursue the world of politics instead of newspapers, yet still saw the advantages in controlling the newspapers from behind the scenes. In the same year, Northcliffe purchased the Sunday Observer. 3 years after that, The Times was also his.

At this point, the Mirror meant little to Northcliffe. He pointed out how it was predominately read by women who couldn't even vote, describing it as 'a good paper for cab drivers'. Northcliffe began to distance himself from the paper on 1910 until 4 years later when he sold the remaining shares to his younger brother, Harold Harmsworth, also known as Lord Rothermere.

Under Rothermere's management, the paper began to crumble. There were issues with budget cuts and editorial interference, and World War I took Rotheremere's attention away from the paper due to his roll as first minister of aircraft. The War was a blessing in disguise for the paper, however, with iconic photographs of the event keeping circulation at a steady pace. Despite a large readership, though, Rotheremere failed to give the paper the attention it needed.

Northcliffe passed away in 1922 following a period of mental deterioration. Leading up to his death, Swaffer was reported to have said: “He was a different man. The fires that burned within him had burned too fiercely all those years. People who knew him knew it was the end.”

Rothermere began to develop extreme right-wing political views, joining Lord Beaverbrook in 1929 to launch the United Party and supporting the cause of extreme fascism in 1931. He described Hitler as a 'perfect gentleman', supporting what he believed was Hitler's desire for 'peace in Europe'. Both the Mail and the Mirror supported the first fascist movement and the Blackshirts until Rotheremere stated in public that he could no longer support a movement centred around dictatorship. However, this was merely an excuse to cover internal issues with advertising revenue.

When Harry Guy Bartholomew took control of the Mirror, circulation was dropping. Rotheremere died in 1940 and at this point, The Daily Mirror had been under the control of Bartholomew for 4 years.Cecil Harmsworth King, Northcliffe's nephew,along with Rothermere, formed an allegiance to become the eventual lords of Fleet Street.

For me, reading about the rise and fall of Northcliffe's empire was particularly interesting. I can't imagine how much pressure must be associated with running a newspaper, keeping things fresh for newcomers and also maintaining the interest of existing readers. Tabloid Nation is a window into the cutthroat world of running a newspaper behind the scenes and the ongoing struggle to be the best.

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