Week Three Blog Activity – Inquiry: Review an event or issue of interest …

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‘Case brought against mine alleged environment minister Greg Hunt approved project without regard for conservation advice for two endangered species’

The lead for this news piece attempts to set a negative tone toward environment minister Greg Hunt by stating his actions were ‘without regard for conservation..’ The lead is engaging and captures the readers attention through the use of two news values; Prominence and controversy.

According to Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith (2012, p. 20) ‘Names make news'” and the people involved in this story are prominent political and environmental protection figures.

Controversy involves a difference of opinion and this particular environmental matter would incur a variety of opinions (Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith, 2012). This lead only relays the who, what and why of the story being presented. The lead is very short and doesn’t contain all the information that it needs to (the 5 W’s and H).

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Screen Shot 2015-08-05 at 3.52.25 pm‘Federal Court sets aside Adani’s environmental approval to build Australia’s largest coal mine in the Galilee Basin following a legal challenge from the Mackay Conservation Group

Unlike The Guardian’s piece on the same topic, this news piece captures the readers attention through an unbiased lead presents facts of the whole story. The lead succinctly answers the who, what, where and why. The lead addresses many different news values including those found in The Guardian’s piece; Prominence and controversy. Proximity is a major news value as this lead mentions a location, and relaying news to people in nearby areas is crucial (Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith, 2012).

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‘The approval of Adani’s Carmichael coal mine in central Queensland has been declared invalid by the Federal Court because of a bureaucratic bungle over two vulnerable species.’

This news piece, intended for online media use features an effective eye-catching lead through use of the term ‘bureaucratic bungle’ to catch the readers attention. The lead addresses the who, what, where and why of the story. This particular lead features multiple news values; prominence, proximity, controversy, currency. Currency is a relevant news value in this story as it has the potential to be an on-going news story and issue to parties involved (Ames 2015)

This particular story interests me as it’s not too dissimilar from an event that happened in my home town a few yeas ago. I lived in Bowen when the topic of the Abbot Point Expansion was hot in the media. The expansion brought about contention from environmental groups concerned with the well-being and conservation of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. These groups were concerned with the drastic, negative impact the expansion and accompanying development would have on the area. Unfortunately, it seems the battle between industrialisation and environmental conservation is still a major issue in central Queensland.

Reflection: This story was quite enjoyable to review as the topic is very similar to an event that happened in my home town a few years ago. I’m enjoying being able to refer my blog activities back to the textbook, study guides and weekly learnings. I feel like I’m getting a grasp on the practical and technical activities, and am enjoying the learnings so far.


Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2015 ‘Approval of Adani’s $16-billion Carmichael coal mine in Queensland’s Galilee Basin ruled invalid by Federal Court‘, viewed 05 August 2015, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-05/federal-court-overturns-approval-of-adanis-carmichael-coal-mine/6673734

Cox, L 2015, ‘Federal court overturns approval of Adani Carmichael coal mine in Queensland’, Sunday Morning Herald, 5 August, viewed on 05 August 2015, http://www.smh.com.au/business/mining-and-resources/federal-court-overturns-approval-of-adani-carmichael-coal-mine-in-queensland-20150805-girtz9?utm_content=buffer9d97a&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

CQUniversity 2015, COMM11007 – Week 3 – Identifying News study guide, CQUniversity, Mackay.

Robertson, J, Milman, O 2015, ‘Approval for Adani’s Carmichael coalmine overturned by federal court’ Guardian, 5 August, viewed on 05 August 2015 http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2015/aug/05/approval-for-adanis-carmichael-coalmine-overturned-by-federal-court

Whitaker, WR, Ramsey, JE & Smith, RD 2012, Media Writing: Print, Broadcast and Public Relations, 4th edition, Routledge, New York.

Week Three Blog Activity – Inquiry: Review an event or issue of interest …

Week Three Blog Activity – Practical: Register a Storify Account

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After reviewing peer Storify accounts, I understand the basics and the required layout of a Storify. When choosing a topic for my first Storify, I searched Trendsmap and found what was current and popular in my area.

I wanted to use a create a story that incorporated the news elements explained in the textbook and study guide. The story I chose to cover incorporates controversy, proximity and novelty.

My first story is about Auburn Deputy Mayor, Salim Mehajer’s lavish wedding that was held a week ago. The wedding has caused controversy due to accusations that Mehajer misused his council status to close roads and enforce curfews for the duration of his wedding. After the event, the people of Auburn rallied against Mehajer who was forced to sit a council hearing to face these accusations.

According to the Ames (2013, pg. 2)  ‘…controversy generally causes a difference of opinions’. Mehajer’s wedding and misuse of his political status have caused a difference of opinions throughout the town of Auburn and all of Australia.

Proximity refers to news that is more important in the areas that it affects or where the news takes place (Ames 2013). This story was picked up by national Australian news due to the degree of novelty of the story and controversy involved.

Novelty incorporates the bizarre and uncommon topics of news. Whitaker, Ramsey and Smith (2012) argue that  “an unusual aspect will lift a story out of the ordinary”. This news piece contains novelty in many forms; the lavish wedding, the closure of streets for the wedding, the political position of the groom involved and the backlash that has erupted. All of these parts to the story are uncommon, different and make for a great entertainment story.

I found that this story was quite an easy one to compile. There were many news outlets that covered the wedding and the controversy afterwards surrounding Salim Mehajer. There was also no shortage of comments from the public surrounding the story.

Reflection: It took me a little while to figure out how to use Storify. I’m still getting the hang of it and just trying to place everything in the correct order. I can definitely see how useful Storify would be. The ability to compile a story with relevant information available on the internet would be incredibly useful in being able to present facts succinctly and with ease.

A Storify is almost like a news article except that it compiles a lot more than just facts or opinion. I’m hoping that my ability to use Storify improves greatly within time. I’ve become quite Twitter savvy, I found myself last week searching a hashtag (#) and was amazed by the response. From one search I was able to access the news articles and responses from people using the hashtag.


CQUniversity 2015, COMM11007 – Week 3 – Identifying News study guide, CQUniversity, Mackay.

Simple, Social News, digital image, Storify,  viewed on 9 August 2015, http://www.storify.com

Whitaker, WR, Ramsey, JE & Smith, RD 2012, Media Writing: Print, Broadcast and Public Relations, 4th edition, Routledge, New York.

Week Three Blog Activity – Practical: Register a Storify Account

Week Three Blog Activity – Technical: Complete Quiz 3


English for Journalists; Chapter 3 – 10 common mistakes

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Review: This question caught me off guard. The length of the sentences and the wording of the question confused me and unfortunately I answered incorrectly.

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Review: Collective nouns are still something I’m working with. After reviewing this question I understand that the answer lies in the word “singular”. The international press is a single body, therefore the answer should have been a singular. An example would be “It’s not often that Dorothy comes around for dinner, but she is tonight.” When simplified, this question was easier to understand.

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Review: Redundant words are new and unfamiliar to me. According to Hicks (2013 p. 36) “if a bond is shared, it is held common.” Redundant words refer to words that are unnecessary, such as ‘more better’ and ‘almost just’. I’ve become aware of using redundant words after reviewing this chapter.

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Review: Deciding whether to use ‘me’ or ‘I’ is an area that remains foggy to me. However, this explanation cleared up any confusion I had.

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Review: This is an area I have a lot of issues with. I quite often use ‘the reason is due to’ in a lot of my writing and it’s a problem I need to work on. ‘Due to’ is another form of a redundant word; the sentence would make sense without the addition of due to.

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Review: Question 10 is another example of a question asking to remove redundant words. It’s apparent that I use many redundant words in my writing and speech as these sentences make sense with the redundant words added.

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Review: I’m still trying to understand collective nouns, subject, verbs etc. This is another area I need to work on.

Reflection: My score on this quiz was abysmal as I had the flu and trying to focus on my studies was impossible. There are many areas of grammar (verbs, adverbs, etc) that I need to wrap my head around and get a better understanding of. Posting such a horrible score on my blog was very daunting, however, I decided to keep with tradition.

Here are some rules that I like to remember, mostly to help me with spelling.

“I before E except after C” – thank you Jackson 5 (I have since discovered there are MANY exceptions to this rule)

“Bananas – B, A, N, A, N, A, S,” – thank you Gwen Stefani

“Beautiful – B E A UTIFUL” – thank you Bruce Almighty.

“No Q without a U” – thank you boyfriend for this addition – if anyone can come up with an exception, please share.

If anyone else who reads this would like to weigh in on their own ways to keep their grammar and spelling in check, I would love to hear them.


Correct Grammar E card 2015, digital image, Rotten E-cards,  viewed 08 July 2015, http://www.rottenecards.com

CQUniversity 2015, COMM11007 –  Blog Activity Quiz Week 3 – Grammar: 10 common mistakes, CQUniversity, Mackay.

Hicks, J 2013, English for Journalists, 20th anniversary ed., Routledge, Oxon.

Week Three Blog Activity – Technical: Complete Quiz 3