Lecture and Activity: Establishing a Digital First Workflow

 What is Digital First? (Power Point)

Here is a standard workflow for how a student reporter might cover a football game for a weekly university newspaper. The result is a 750-word print article with two photos. It is also posted online and linked to via social media.

Friday – Pre-game
-Reporter does pre-game research on team and opponent.

Saturday, Game day
-Reporter goes to game at 7 pm. Gathers stats, info on big plays, interviews coach and a few players.
-Reporter sends out a tweet with score.
-Photographer goes to game and takes photos.

Sunday – Day after game
-Reporter writes up 750-word story. Emails it to editor.
-Photographer emails photos to editor.

Monday and Tuesday – Two days after the game
-Editor responds to story. Has reporter add a few details, get an additional quote.
-Reporter rewrites story and returns it to editor.

Wednesday – Three days after the game
-Story is copy edited.
-Layout for print publication. Headlines and photos are added.
-Final copyediting.
-Story is posted online on newspaper website.
-Link to online article is posted on Twitter and Facebook.
-Newspaper goes to printer at night.

Thursday – Print edition delivered
-Print publication comes out.

My question for you: What are the problems with this workflow and content?

Get together with a partner and rework the workflow for this story. Answer the following:

  1. Who is the audience for this football story?
  2. How do you reach this audience? Where do they gather (in person and online)?
  3. List the kind of information/content/forms of media you think students want on this game?
  4. For each of the items above in question 3: When do students want this information? (i.e., day before, day of game, day after, etc?)
  5. For each of the items listed above in question 3: What is the best way to get this information to them (i.e., Twitter, posted on a website, in print, etc?)

Now come up with a digital-first workflow for covering the story.




Come back together as a group. Discuss your ideas. Create a new workflow for a student reporter and the paper.

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