Five journalism trends to watch in Asia

CNN's Kristie Lu Stout interviews Jeff Widener, photographer of "Tank Man," at N3Con on June 7, 2013. (Photo by Sharon Pian Chan)

CNN’s Kristie Lu Stout interviews Jeff Widener, photographer of “Tank Man,” at N3Con on June 7, 2013. (Photo by Sharon Pian Chan)

Journalists from all over Asia converged in Hong Kong for AAJA Asia’s media conference New.Now.Next this past weekend. I co-led a session on “How to Land a Job in a Digital Age” and learned even more from the other sessions. Here are five journalism trends to watch from Asia.

1. The media industry is growing. From infant to mature media companies, the news industry in Asia is thriving. The News Lens, a Taiwanese start-up, has gained more than 3 million monthly unique visitors since launching in August 2013. Co-founder Joey Chung, a former manager for Sanrio, talked about the company’s success, which is built on providing fair and independent coverage. The social media news site targets readers who are mobile first. Self-funded for the first few months, the site has now attracted high-profile investors Marcus Brauchli, former Washington Post editor, and Sasa Vucinic. Check out a TechCrunch story about The News Lens.

The Wall Street Journal Asia no longer thinks about just what the U.S. reader wants to know about Asia, but what multiple audiences want to know about Asia. That includes publishing news sites in different languages, real-time blogs and the enterprise stories the Journal is known for. Paul Beckett, WSJ Asia editor, said his goal was to build a “very deep vertical.” For more, check out Jim Romenesko’s write-up of a speech Beckett gave in April.

Also, keep an eye on the many digital-only blogs started in people’s living rooms that have gained a loyal following, such as Shanghaiist, Coconuts TV and newcomers like Hong Wrong. (And these are just the blogs that serve English-speaking expats.) You must watch this Coconuts video on Thai men who embrace Mexican gangster culture.

2. The importance of mobile. Alan Soon, managing editor for Yahoo! Southeast Asia, said in countries like India and Indonesia, it’s no longer “mobile first.” It’s “mobile only.” “It’s no longer the medium is the message, it’s the distribution is the message.” This has major implications for what stories get published and how a story is told, Soon said.

3. Innovative storytelling. “Kowloon Walled City” by the Wall Street Journal explored the history of a neighborhood in video and interactive graphics. This is one of the most-viewed videos ever published by WSJ.com. And even though it took the team six months to produce, the newsroom can now build a similar project in a week. Kowloon Wall City is a strong reminder that some of the most innovative online storytelling is being done in Asia.

4. The story that never ends: Malaysia Airline’s missing plane MH 370. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, said WSJ Asia Digital Editor Adam Najburg, you learn you haven’t seen it all.

“The media consuming people of earth” are really accustomed to endings to stories, said Ted Anthony, Asia-Pacific news director for the Associated Press. Not all news ends in a distinct fashion, Anthony said. Still, there is much “quiet pain” going on in different places, Anthony said.

5. Press freedom. The most powerful moment of the conference was when a former Ming Pao editor who was critically injured in a stabbing attack appeared in an exclusive video interview. Lau is just learning how to walk again. Here is the video:

Steve Herman, based in Bangkok for Voice of America, said there are soldiers in Thai newsrooms after the military coup. Bloomberg decided to spike controversial stories about China. Michael Forsythe, who left Bloomberg after the incident to join the New York Times, exhorted Hong Kong media to report stories that hold the Chinese government accountable. (Here is the back story in The New York Times.)

That all tied back to the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests on June 4. Jeff Widener, the photographer who captured the famous image of a man confronting a line of tanks, talked about the experience of covering the event. I have to confess feeling some Tiananmen coverage fatigue before I got to Hong Kong (having read multiple stories and edited an op-ed about the topic before I got to Hong Kong) but after hearing Widener talk, I felt like a middle school student all over again riveted by TV news stories in 1989.

Thank you to the AAJA Asia and Hong Kong University’s Journalism & Media Studies Center for another excellent gathering. If you want to learn more, check out N3Con.com, which covered the event live in text, photo and video.

This post, originally published on June 10, 2014 at 6:17 a.m., was corrected the same day at 8:06 p.m. An earlier version incorrectly said a suspect had not been charged in Kevin Lau’s stabbing.

Journalists from all over Asia converged in Hong Kong for AAJA Asia's media conference New.Now.Next this past weekend. I...

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Presentation from ‘How to Land a Job in a Digital Age’ session in Hong Kong

Check out the presentation from our “How to Land a Job in a Digital Age” session in Hong Kong at the AAJA Asia New.Next.Now conference, also known as N3Con.

This session featured Paul Cheung, AP director of interactives and digital news production, J.L. Gatewood, photojournalist for NAMtv and TOMOnews and Sharon Chan, associate opinions editor for The Seattle Times.

Check out the presentation from our "How to Land a Job in a Digital Age" session in Hong Kong at the AAJA Asia New.Next....

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‘Landing a Job in a Digital Age’ session in Hong Kong on June 7

Paul Cheung

Paul Cheung

Are you an English-speaking journalist in Asia? You can still register for New.Now.Next International Media Conference (aka N3Con) at Hong Kong University on June 6 to 8.

You’ll get unparalleled access to Asia-Pacific editors, major news anchors and print journalists and experts in the digital, diversity, press relations and social media fields. You’ll also have exclusive access to resume critiques and potential job leads. Check it all out: www.n3con.com. Registration is HK$1,000, or about $130 in U.S. dollars.

I’ll be speaking at a session on “Landing a Job in a Digital Age” on June 7 at 5:45 p.m. The other panelists are Paul Cheung, AAJA president and the AP’s director of interactive and digital news production based in New York, and J.L. Gatewood, AAJA Asia chapter secretary and Taiwan-based photojournalist for NMAtv/TOMOnews.

J.L. Gatewood

We were inspired to create this session based on the questions we got at last year’s AAJA Asia media conference about how to network for your career. The career landscape is evolving, and the job search is evolving along with it. Personal brand, social media, digital footprint – what does it all mean?

Do you need to be on Twitter? What about LinkedIn? Generic won’t make the cut any more. In this workshop, learn what it takes to move you up the hiring priority list, from designing a resume to impressing your interviewer. We’ll do interview role-playing with workshop attendees who want to work through specific scenarios.

We’ll teach you how to stand out — online, in print and in person. Because you never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Are you an English-speaking journalist in Asia? You can still register for New.Now.Next International Media Conference (...

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Rewind: AAJA Chicago Media Access Workshop opinion writing session

Thank you to everyone who came to the AAJA Media Access Workshop in Chicago on how to write and pitch op-eds.

Here is the slideshow presentation from the session featuring Marcia Lythcott, Ameet Sachdev, Cory Franklin and myself.

Thank you to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for sponsoring this series of workshops with the Asian American Journalists Association.

Thank you to everyone who came to the AAJA Media Access Workshop in Chicago on how to write and pitch op-eds. Here is th...

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‘How to write an op-ed’ session in Chicago on April 26

AAJA Chicago Media Access workshop logo

If you’re a Chicago nonprofit or community group working on getting your story told in the news, save the date for April 26. The Chicago chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association will be holding a Media Access Workshop that day, sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The event is free, but you must register in advance.

Marcia Lythcott

Marcia Lythcott

Sign up at the Media Access workshop website.

Ameet Sachdev

Ameet Sachdev

I’ll be presenting a session on op-ed writing with Marcia Lythcott, op-ed editor for the Chicago Tribune, Ameet Sachdev, business reporter at the Tribune and Dr. Cory Franklin. The op-ed session is at 3 p.m. Here is the full 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. schedule.

Cory Franklin

Cory Franklin

I’ve learned a lot from the attendees at the previous sessions in Seattle and San Francisco and I am excited to meet who comes to the session in Chicago.

If you're a Chicago nonprofit or community group working on getting your story told in the news, save the date for April...

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Upcoming session on column writing at the AAJA 2014 convention in D.C.

Want to figure about how to become a columnist? I’ll be doing a session on the topic with Wall Street Journal columnist Jeff Yang, aka Tao Jones, in August. Jeff and I will present the session at the national convention for the Asian American Journalists Association in Washington, D.C. from Aug. 13 to 16.

If you are thinking about coming to the convention, early-bird rates end Tuesday, April 15. This convention is where you want to be if you’re a college student looking for an internship or job in journalism, if you want to build a network of peers and mentors in journalism or if you’re a journalist who just needs some good old-fashioned inspiration.

Register now at AAJA’s 2014 convention site. Rates will go up after April 15.

Here’s a Vine video starring Jeff’s avatar and myself.

Want to figure about how to become a columnist? I'll be doing a session on the topic with Wall Street Journal columnist...

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Op-ed writing session at AAJA San Francisco Media Access Workshop

A session on how to pitch a news story at the AAJA Media Access Workshop at the Academy of Arts University in San Francisco on March 29, 2014. (Photo by Sharon Pian Chan)

Panelists share tips how to pitch a news story at the AAJA Media Access Workshop at the Academy of Arts University in San Francisco on March 29, 2014. (Photo by Sharon Pian Chan)

Are you a nonprofit wondering how to write and pitch a guest column for publication?

Here is the presentation I shared at a session on op-ed writing at a Media Access Workshop organized by the San Francisco chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association on March 29, 2014.

Thank you to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for supporting this series of workshops across the country.

Are you a nonprofit wondering how to write and pitch a guest column for publication? Here is the presentation I shared a...

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Op-ed writing tutorial at AAJA Seattle Media Access

Here is a tutorial on op-ed writing I presented at a Media Access Workshop organized by the Asian American Journalists Association on March 15, 2014 at The Seattle Times. Thank you to all the community members for coming, to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for its financial support and to The Seattle Times for hosting the event. The slideshow is below.

More resources we talked about during the session:
Dianne Chong’s op-ed for The Seattle Times: “The most common question from young women engineers? What to wear.” An example of how an engineer wrote a great guest column.
Hugo House: A great place in Seattle to learn how to become a better writer through classes, readings and writer community events
The Washington Post’s list of journalism cliches

Update 3/18/14 11:54 a.m.:
To get more insights from the whole workshop, including sessions on how news organizations decide what’s a story and how to pitch news stories, check out the social media highlights of the day compiled by AAJA Seattle Chapter President Mai Hoang.

Here is a photo below shared by AAJA on Twitter.

Here is a tutorial on op-ed writing I presented at a Media Access Workshop organized by the Asian American Journalists A...

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AAJA13 session: Ten Ways to Make Your Story More Engaging

AAJA convention attendees: You’re invited to a session at the Asian American Journalists Association Convention on “Ten Ways to Make Your Story More Engaging” at 11 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 23, 2013 in Nassau West. 

How many of you groan at the thought of responding to emails and phone calls from readers, viewers and listeners? 

Reader engagement is more than a buzz word, it’s key to the survival of journalism in a cutthroat competitive landscape for online readers. 

It’s about more than responding to trolls in anonymous online comments. 

Let’s talk about 10 proven ways to engage your readers digitally, in print, on television on the radio and in person. Learn from our mistakes and successes. Pick up the best practices across platforms. We are here to help you build your relationship with readers, whether you’re a reporter, a producer, photographer in print, broadcast or online. 

http://www.slideshare.net/sharonpianchan/ten-ways-to-make-your-story-more-engaging AAJA convention attendees: You’...

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