Category: Poynter

Is the tide turning for UX in media?

Here is a word that does not come up often enough in journalism-tech conferences:


Empathy for readers, for advertisers and for colleagues in other departments. (That last one is a big deal if you want to get innovative things done at work.)

Empathy is simply the ability to understand the feelings and perceptions of another person. And it is a key ingredient to making products a person (who is not you) might hope to use and enjoy.

Yesterday at Poynter’s Mobile News Summit (#mobilenews15) in NYC the concept came up quite a bit. Not everyone used the exact word, but their meaning was quite clear. The day was putatively about mobile, but it focused extensively on putting readers and their needs first.

One of my favorite quotes of the day was directly on that topic.

Question: Is there a business case for investing in user experience? Answer from Jim Brady of Billy Penn: Yes. Frustrating users is not a strategy.

What are your metrics?

In December I will be leading a Poynter News University webinar titled “Track Your Traffic: Web Metrics for Journalists.” The name sort of aligns itself with the theory that journalists and math don’t mix well which is unfair but still often true. So while basic Web metrics are not calculus if you don’t work with them every day then jargon like UV, PV, Avg Time Spent, Search Refers, and Bounce Rate can still be a challenge.

The session will review the basic terms and methodology of Web analytics but will also let people put their own Web reports into some context. To help with that we want to gather (anonymously) examples of a few key metrics from your web site. We don’t want names or any other identifying information and the only descriptions that will be used in the training will be generic such as “A 30,000 circ daily in the Northeast.”

If you complete the survey and provide your e-mail address, we’ll send you a promo code worth $10 off the Webinar. The code will be sent one month before the Webinar, so make sure you fill out the survey before then.

Thanks for the help and please leave a comment below if you have any questions or have additional data to share that might be useful in the training.

Tools for mobile journalists

As a journalist, what are your favorite mobile tools?

Not just services like Qik or Twitter, or devices like the iPhone, but anything (I mean anything) you use for researching, reporting, publishing or interacting with the community when you are on-the-go.

Think of anything from power converters to WiFi locator maps. Everything from the MiFi to the EyeFi. What is in your camera bag or backpack or car trunk (or on your phone or laptop) that helps you do your job?

I am building a June webinar for Poynter’s News University (name and date TBD) and am looking for some great examples of people doing cool things with mobile tools. You can see an list of collected links for the project at

If you know what an OWLE is or have filed a 10 inch story from your Blackberry please let me know. I hope to use a selection of real-world examples for the webinar as well as expand on a few for the Mobile Media blog.

Please leave a comment below, email damon(at), or ping me @dkiesow. Thanks!