Jour 203-BDP

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Multimedia news organizations have been popping up since the mid 1990s. However only recently have breaking stories such as the Amish school shooting, been available online in print, video, and audio formats. This horrifying story, which happened today October 3 2006, sparked my interest and I began researching the developing details. The media of three different news organizations offered very distinct perspectives on the subject.
My first inclination is to go to what is comfortable and for me that is print stories on the web. BBC, the British Broadcasting Corporation, presented a in depth story of the fatal shooting at an Amish school with details divulging the killer’s name and motive, number of causalities, and quotes from people affected by the crime. Extremely thorough, especially for breaking news, I did not feel the need to research this story further. Other benefits of print media are the instant access and trustworthiness of a published story. However in today’s technological age is hard to hold the average American’s attention solely with words. Downsides to a print story are the lack of visuals and increased time required to get through a story. My next source of information combated those problems effectively.
Online CNN presents a video feature of the Amish school killing. Easily accessible this 2 minute and a half minute story gave me all the basic information. Seeing the killer’s face, scene of the shooting, and reporters/police live at the crime scene affected me far more than the print version. Benefits of a video edition of a story are the audio and visual aspects, conciseness, and immediate impact. Negative aspects of the video presentation were the Washington Mutual advertisement I was forced to watch prior, lack of detail, and delayed availability online. Surprisingly podcasts were another available resource about this tragedy.
Accustomed to listening to Morning Edition on NPR, I had no inhibitions about using an audio source to get my news. Online CBS had podcasts available of several breaking stories, with instructions on how to access them efficiently. I gained access to the Amish school killing through iTunes, but CBS recommends and makes available several other viewing formats. The time required to load the podcast is the obvious downside of this medium. Otherwise I found a nice balance of print and video attributes with the podcast. Print aspects were evident in the detailed analysis. Video features were apparent in the brevity and ability to hold my attention. All in all, which medium is most effective? In my opinion multimedia is a matter of preference and my preference is a little bit of everything. This is Brittany Davis Pulley signing off.

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