In-Class Storify Assignment

Worth 2 Participation Points

Storify is a tool for curation. See BillyPenn’s Storify on Pope visit to Philadelphia.

The main goal of the assignment is to practice the key aspects of journalistic curation, including how to:

  • Identify essential pieces information
  • Evaluate sources and facts (are they reliable?)
  • Provide context to social media posts
  • Assemble a summary or narrative of a news story that makes sense of a chaotic bunch of information
  • Play to the strengths of individual media elements (text, photos, sound, video, graphics) to create the most compelling content
  • Pay attention to contiguity – how individual media elements (text, photos, sound, video, graphics) relate to each other

Here is the assignment…

Pick one of the following stories to curate:

1. The Delaware River-Turnpike Toll Bridge connecting Bristol Township on the Pennsylvania side to Burlington Township on the New Jersey is out of commission. Why? How has it been affecting traffic, commuters and local residents? When will it be reopened?

2. Today is College Football signing day, the date when the best high school players formally declare where they are going to college. Who are the best players? Where are they expected to go? Has anyone declared yet today? Give us a mid-day update.

3. After President Trump signed an executive order temporarily banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries including Syria, Starbucks announced it would hire 10,000 refugees. Why? How have politicians, business leaders and customers responded?

For this curation assignment, you are required to:

Write a compelling headline and a short summary at the top of your Storify. Your headline should include key words for search, convey the main point of your Storify, and encourage the reader to continue.

Explain the 5 Ws of the story. Use text to lead into your storify and to introduce/connect/clarify the media elements.

Include at least six (6) sources from at least three (3) different social media platforms (Twitter, Google News, YouTube, etc).

Include at least two (2) visuals – photos, video. Each visual must be relevant and provide valuable insight or information to your topic.

Your completed Storify should summarize the key aspects of story, provide compelling social media content, and provide links to learn more.

Get started:

  1. Go to to sign up for an account. If you log in with a Twitter account it will connect to those accounts.
  2. Click on New Story button.
  3. This will take you to the “Create a Story” screen. The left-hand side is where you build the story and the right-hand side of the screen contains a list of social media elements. You can search for content from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Google, RSS feeds and there’s also an option to paste in specific urls. The “+” sign at the right will reveal more options.
  4. Use the search features to find the best information from different sources. You can explore them and then drag and drop into your timeline.
  5. You can add text to introduce individual media elements or to advance the summary or narrative.
  6. You can rearrange the order of your elements as you go.
  7. When you are finished compiling your Storify, write your headline and 100 word summary at the top.
  8. Hit “Publish” (blue button at the top of the toolbar)
  9. Email me a link to your Storify.

(This assignment was adapted from resources by Millerbh and Kelly Fincham)

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