What to Do When Police Tell You to Stop Shooting

From: Al Tompkins / Poynter.org A recent Gizmodo story, “Are Cameras the New Guns?,” created quite a stir in journalism circles recently. Gizmodo found that there appears to be an increase in the number of citizens arrested for filming abuse by police, or just police in action: “In response to a flood of Facebook and YouTube videos that depict police abuse, a new trend in law enforcement is gaining popularity….

What RTNDA Focus Groups Hate about TV News

From: RTNDA Communicator RTNDA Chairman, Stacey Woelfel; Poynter Online Guru, Al Tompkins; and talented photographer, Lynn French, among others, posed questions to a focus group of TV news viewers and discovered a few things they like and hate about us. Some of their reactions are completely predictable, but you’ll find a few surprises in the Top 10 list. Read Al Tompkins article here.

How to Handle Photos of Flag-Draped Coffins

From: Al Tompkins, Poynter.org Flag-draped coffins arrive from Iraq and Afghanistan every week — mostly out of public sight. While the Bush administration banned photographs of the arrival ceremonies, the Obama administration is now considering lifting the ban. This raises several important questions for journalists: What should our response be if the ban is lifted? How would we explain the importance of the photographs to the public? How will we…

BBC Edit of Obama Speech Raises Ethical Issues

From: Al Tompkins, Poynter.org A recent BBC show has raised controversy about ethical editing of speeches. “The BBC’s Newsnight show recently opened with what seemed like a single soundbite from President Barack Obama’s inauguration speech. As it turns out, though, the BBC used three different parts of the inauguration speech and edited them together to create the soundbite. In listening to the audio, it’s not clear that it had been…

CNN Show Written, Edited, Produced by Photojournalists

From: Al Tompkins, Poynter.org There are only a few things I am sure of in the world of journalism, but this is one of them: In 2009, journalists will be capturing more video and working alone more often. ThisĀ is already happening in local TV, in the newspaper and online worlds, and as you are about to see, even CNN’s photojournalists are out there producing entire shows by themselves. CNN photojournalist…