Excellence in Journalism 2017 | Anaheim


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Excellence in Journalism 2014 – That’s a Wrap

With Excellence in Journalism 2014 in the books, find out what attendees thought about the event and what they expect of next year’s conference in Orlando. Also check out noteworthy statistics from this year’s conference.

The 950 journalist who attended Excellence in Journalism 2014 were able to choose from more than 50 workshops and breakout sessions. The Super Sessions with Kara Swisher and Dick Ebersol attracted about 300 people each, while 40-50 attended most of the workshops on average.

CNN Newsource spoiled journalists with a big Opening Night Reception at the Wildhorse Saloon. Continue reading

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SPJ President’s Installation Banquet Photos

The Society of Professional Journalists President’s Installation Banquet rounded out the 2014 Excellence in Journalism Conference on Saturday evening. Members, volunteers and staff gathered to celebrate the end of the conference and honor members and journalists for their efforts within SPJ and the media industry.

Alex Tarquinio of the New York Deadline Club accepting the Howard S. Dubin Outstanding Pro Member Award.

Michele Norris of NPR was recognized as a Fellow of the Society.

Kevin Smith, ethics committee chairman, receiving the Wells Memorial Key for Outstanding Service to the Society. Continue reading

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News Staff Picks: Top 5 Moments of EIJ14

Now that Excellence in Journalism 2014 is officially a wrap, the EIJ News staff compiled these top 5 moments of the conference:

SPJ Ethics Code Revisions Pass. After much discussion and revision, the new Code of Ethics was passed at the closing business session. SPJ Name Change Motion Failed: A highly publicized discussion and session could not steer the majority of those who participated in the straw poll to possibly changing the Society of Professional Journalists to the Society for Professional Journalism to vote in its favor. Continue reading

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SPJ Election Results

Attendees and registered SPJ members were able to vote for the upcoming year’s directors and representatives since Thursday when the Excellence in Journalism conference began. And doing so in appropriate fashion for the digital age; for the first time members were able to cast their votes via an online voting system.

The position applications opened in the spring. Since then, candidates have campaigned for their hopeful spots in the society with live streamed candidate speeches and the creation of social media groups to raise awareness of their ambitions. Continue reading

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Panel Discussion on Media Entrepreneurship with Industry Heavyweights

In recent years, journalism has undergone a profound, all-encompassing change. Old hierarchy structures, job prospects, linear career steps and ways to make money have been disrupted by new jobs, new methods to self brand and new revenue streams.

One of the most important issues in this new era in journalism, which is something many journalists still dread, is how to monetize stories.

Kara Swisher, Brian Stelter and Etienne Uzac are no strangers to media entrepreneurship. Saturday morning, the three industry heavyweights discussed media entrepreneurship, new forms of storytelling and the future of journalism. Continue reading

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A Freelance Chapter?: SPJ’s First Virtual Community Have Already Made a Motion

For the first time in its 105 years, SPJ members are in talks for possibly creating their first ever virtual chapter. The Freelance Community, the first non-geographic community recognized by SPJ, has made a motion at EIJ14 for the Bylaw Committee to consider making a chapter for the future.

The motion, initially drafted by D.C. freelancer and Freelance Committee member Hazel Becker, states “The Freelance Community requests that the SPJ Board ask the Bylaw Committee to consider what changes might be needed to give communities a voice in governance of the society.” The Freelance Committee voted unanimously for the motion and planned to relay the message to respective parties before the upcoming Board of Directors meeting. Continue reading

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EIJ14 Day 2 in Tweets

[View the story “EIJ14 Day 2 in Tweets” on Storify] Continue reading

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Getting Creative with Google Maps

Media Outreach Coordinator Vanessa Schneider led the breakout session “Storytelling with Google Maps.” The Googler said she enjoyed the conference. “Excellence in Journalism is a great opportunity to meet with journalists, see what challenges they have and how they want to use these geo-tools in their work.”

Vanessa Schneider’s job is to help people tell stories through Google mapping tools. Schneider showed some EIJ attendees the way to utilizing these tools, like Google Earth, Maps and Crisis Map during a panel. Continue reading

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Reporters Reflect on Lessons Learned in Ferguson

Photo by Julian Paredes

While the crisis in Ferguson raged on in front of camera crews for weeks on end, reporters on the ground saw a different reality.

They also saw that reality distorted – or participated in the distortion themselves – as Ferguson descended into a “war zone” in a matter of days. The protests and the violence were mostly limited to a three street block area and most of the incidents happened after nightfall, more specifically, after midnight.

Speakers at Friday morning’s Ferguson panel were on the scene as the police brutality and subsequent protests unfolded after a police officer shot and killed Michael Brown, 18, an unarmed black resident of St. Continue reading

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Diversity at EIJ14: Bringing Color to SPJ

The SPJ Diversity Committee had a lively discussion at EIJ14 on better ways to improve the experience of members of color. Although more can be done in shaping programming and recruitment, the new chair, April Bethea, plans to implement new solutions to diversify management training and membership. Here is a video highlighting some of the key topics and plans discussed at this session.

Continue reading

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The SPJ Name Change: What People Think About the Upcoming Vote

The upcoming SPJ name change discussion is slated for discussion Saturday during Excellence in Journalism 2014.  However many attendees aren’t waiting until the weekend to share their views.

While the proposal to change from “The Society of Professional Journalists” to “The Society for Professional Journalism” may seem like a minor issue, it’s actually created a bit of a stir among organization leadership and members. Please check out this exclusive video on the various thoughts and opinions on the topic.

Continue reading

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EIJ14 Remembers John Seigenthaler

The coincidence that the 2014 Excellence in Journalism Convention in Nashville convened shortly after the death of John Seigenthaler, the Nashville-born publisher of the Tennessean, administrative assistant to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy and lifelong defender of the First Amendment is, well, uncanny.

Or maybe it’s just serendipitous, said Freedom Sings’ frontwoman Jonell Mosser, a singer in a band formed to educate young audiences about the importance of the First Amendment.

“It’s exactly the right thing,” said Mosser.

The convention officially began with a memorial held for Seigenthaler, who died in July at the age of 86. Continue reading

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EIJ14 Day 1 in Tweets

[View the story “EIJ14 Day 1 in Tweets” on Storify] Continue reading

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I Heart Line Dancing: A Nashville Memory to Cherish Forever

Cowboy boots and line dancing were the name of the game at the Excellence in Journalism’s Opening Reception at the WildHorse Saloon. As hundreds of journalists boarded charter buses to the downtown Nashville location, clad or not-clad in cowboy boots, line dancing was an inevitable spectacle, whether it was by participation or observation.

“Line dancing is one of the activities where you either don’t care and you want have a lot of good times,” said Tony Hernandez, an EIJ attendee and reporter for the Knoxville News Sentinel, “Or you’re one of those professional line dancers and you want to have a good time. Continue reading

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SPJ President-Elect: What Can I Do For Students, Professionals, Journalism?


Dana Neuts, president elect of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Since 2005, Dana Neuts has been a faithful Society of Professional Journalists member. A veteran of multiple EIJ/SPJ conferences, Neuts has networked with industry professionals and, arguably, the most important, asked, “what resources can I get from SPJ?”

After being laid off from her corporate business job, along with the help of SPJ, Neuts was able to establish herself as a freelance writer in the Seattle-area. Neuts additionally created a personal website, Virtually Yourz, and established a hyper-local news site for her local town, IloveKent.net — all while continuing to regularly contribute to AARP Bulletin and The Seattle Times. Continue reading

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EIJ Survival Wear

At conferences such as Excellence in Journalism, first impressions are everything. When meeting industry newsmakers and future employers, everything is considered; from what one says to how one acts. It’s all a part of the first impression.

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Data Journalism Workshop with Pulitzer Prize Winner

Wednesday morning, Pulitzer Prize-winning Seattle Times journalist Michael J. Berens led a workshop on data journalism.

50 students, educators and reporters participated in the workshop, which was sponsored by the National Center for Business Journalism.

“Databases are the backbone of every story,” says Berens. “The key to data journalism is quantification – the ability to count what we do specifically.”

According to the investigative journalist, not knowing about data journalism is like being “functionally illiterate.” Berens adds: “vast reams of public data are kept exclusively in electronic format. Continue reading

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Got some free time? Use our guide to explore ‘Music City’

Smart discussions and networking opportunities are expected to go well beyond the hallways and conference rooms of the Opryland Resort and Convention Center this weekend.