Thursday, December 13, 2012

Anonymous sources

Most of people consider that anonymous sources cannot use in the news story because it barely contribute to the creditability; However, I think if anonymous can be handled properly, it will be useful to society.

Even though anonymous sources have been condemned by the most of public as a threat to the credibility of the media, I still consider the world’s most famous anonymous source, Deep Throat, the pseudonym given to the secret informant who provided information to Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein of The Washington Post in 1972 about the involvement of United States President Richard Nixon's administration in what came to be known as the Watergatescandal, reminds the media and the public why their use is sometime necessary.

I believe that anonymous sources can contribute to the news stories because it offers proof of the fact. However, the reported should carefully use of the anonymous. According to Bradlee, a vice president at The Washington Post, reporters got lazy at the using of the anonymous sources. Some of the reporters started “picking up some skinny and they say, ‘Well, as one official said, ’” Bradless said. From the interview of Bradless, he mentioned that the reporters should specific the anonymous sources as much as possible, such as a man or a woman, an Army or a Navy, or Republican or Democrat. Bradless said it can help the reader a lot.

Also, I think anonymous sources can show the credibility if the reporter knows what he or she telling is the truth. As a reporter, we have a duty to telling the truth to our readers. If the anonymous sources can make our readers know more, why we do not use it?

According to Bradless, there are other little tricks that the reporters can use; “most of these stories where the lead of the sources is identified as anonymous, the name will be mentioned somewhere in the story.” (From the interview of Bradlee)

The Watergate is best example to show how anonymous sources can work for a news story, and I believe it will still used by many reporters even it is always under a controversy.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Does the quote and attribution really work?

As a student major in Public Relations, I almost work on the news story every day in my life. From all my work on the news story, I have been told that there should not include my personal opinions in my work because as a PR practitioner, I should fair and equitable.

Thus, in order to show the creditability to the readers, we need someone else- an expert or an observer- to support our story. In the article “cut this story,” the author Kinsley said that “it’s not her (reporter) job to have a view. In fact, it’s her (reporter) job to not have a view. Even though it’s her (reporter) story and her judgment, she needs to find someone else to repeat and endorse her conclusion.” Just like Kinsley said, most of the quotes are just repeating the reporter’s view, and these quotes magically turn an opinionated story into an objective one, so I wonder that does the reporter still fair and equitable?

During my work, I found I usually already deiced the main purpose or main statement of my news story. Even though I interviewed someone, I already set up the question first. In some way, I still write the news story from my view. If the problem is truth for most reporters, why we need someone else to repeat our view, we can talk about it by ourselves.

An interesting thing is in order to make the readers believe in what the quote said about. Most of the reporters were identificated the person whom the reporters quote from with a long sentence to add credibility, according to Kinsley. In fact, how many readers really know the person who said the quote? Also, there is no particular reason for the readers to believe in what the person said about. Like the Kinsley said that he trust the information because of the organization who publish this article rather than the person himself or herself.

From those problems, it seems that quote and attribution, which are two most important aspects in a news story, lost their function. However, if the quote and attribution didn’t work for a story, what the readers should believe in? From my opinion, if every reporter can does their best that to telling the truth and fact to the readers, the news industry may do not need the middle-man anymore; the reader can trust the reporters.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Modified School Calendar

Last week, I attended Winona School board meeting at the City Hall. During the meeting, the staff of the Calendar Committee talked about the Modified School Calendar. I believe that learning is continuous with a modified school calendar which allows a higher-quality education.

Different with traditional calendar, the modified calendar would basically feature 45 days of classroom learning followed by 15 days off of school. Gain of one month each year for 12 year equals 1.33 additional years of instruction.

The chair of Calendar Committee, Kelly Halvorsen presented information about the modified school calendar during the meeting said that the students lose one to three months of learning when using the traditional calendar, the loss especially shows on Math and Reading. Halvorsen said that children do not maintain the same rate of learning over the summer as they do during the traditional school year, which means students lose learning during the traditional summers off, in particular “children with special needs and lower economic opportunities.”

              According to a study on MN DCFL Working Group on 1998 which mentioned during the meeting, students attending modified calendar schools will perform as well as, and in some instances, better than students attending schools on a traditional calendar. In addition, the study show that for students with disabilities, school calendars with more frequent and shorter breaks provide more continuous learning and contact with others.

       I consider the modified calendar provide a better learning plan for students. In some way, it helps increased student attendance because there are several small breaks which are different with the traditional calendar. The most important thing is the modified calendar will result in less stress and burnout for teachers and students; moreover, the break refreshes teachers and students and increases enthusiasm and motivation for teaching and learning. In addition, I believe the new calendar provides families with a more flexible way to plan family gatherings and vacations.

       Maybe it’s the time to make a change on the traditional calendar if the modified calendar works well.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Talk about Journalist

I think Journalists are important because they help people get information. In my opinion, the most important role the journalist plays in the society is gatekeeper, and what a journalist thinks about the world is how the people will see the world. Moreover, Journalists are important to us because what we know is delivered by them. Thus, message delivery is the duty of the journalist, even those who write for very small daily news or only one reader.

"digital journalist"
One thing the journalist should be careful with is fairness and justice. A journalist should consider the two sides about the news when he or she writes because the reader can feel it; moreover, the journalist must make sure everything he or she write are getting right, especially the name.

However, the print newspaper is dying today. I believe it is not good thing for country; however, someone say it not big deal because they think they can get information online. But, I think it’s different because the quality of the information is change and the reader may miss some news. What is more, the journalists are losing their job.

Thus, as a students who major in Journalist or Public Relation should preprae well for future. such as learn how to take notes because it is an important part during the interview; on the other hand, try to relax when doing a interview because you relax, someone you interviewed relax.

Sunday, October 28, 2012


“Shopaholic” is a term used to describe the individual who considers himself or herself addicted to shopping. This phenomenon appears not only in women but also in men. Recently, over-shopping has been regarded as a psychological disease; however, a lot of people are not be aware of their diseases. Many psychologists remind people to focus on this issue because mental health is as important as physical health. In fact, a shopping addiction is a manifestation for a person who is lacking confidence or a person who is feeling lonely, since over-shopping is not hard to control. Therefore, I have advice to help a shopaholic regain her or his mental health.

First of all, because of loneliness, most people like using shopping to make up for their feeling of anxiety. So, to fix this, shopaholics can choose some other things to do in their leisure time, like physical exercise. This is a really good way to help self-control; especially do exercise with friends, for example, swimming together and playing some ball games together. The shopaholics may find that they even forget the time when they stay with their friends.

In addition, leave credit cards at home when going out working, studying, or hanging out with friends. In fact, the credit card is a catalyst for shopaholics. Shopaholics never care about money when they shop because the credit card provides an easier way to check out, and this kind of unimpeded spending gives a lot of pleasant sensations to them so that they do not control themselves. Therefore, leaving credit cards at home and taking less cash is better.
Also, try to avoid mass information for promotions or discounts; the information involves numerous messages about the products being promoted every day. So, a lot of shopaholics cannot control themselves when they get a discount. When they see a discount, shopaholics should keep calm and always tell themselves that there will be another big deal better than this one tomorrow.
Lastly, shopaholics should always say “wait” during the checkout and ask themselves whether they really need this product or try to find something they don’t like about it. For example, shopping online is an easier way for shopaholics to be satisfied; moreover, it is also a shopping method that is hard to control because there are more choices and it is more convenient; however, if shopaholics can keep calm when they see the shopping bag before checking out, it can help to save a lot of money.
So, if someone remembers she or he may be suffering from “shopaholicism,” it will make her or him not only feel unhappy but also feel sad because she or he always thinks it is not enough. In order to control this desire of shopping, you need to keep calm and change into a better, healthier life style.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Too Much Facebook?

“Have you Facebooked today?” already has become a tag. Also, Facebook became the second largest social network in America in only three years. It was counted as the most potential social network in this field. Although Facebook is popularly used by numerous people, I still believe that Facebook is a really terrible thing for us because it brings a lot of bad effects to our lives. However, people cannot stop logging onto Facebook because there is no denying Facebook can be a great tool for helping people connect with friends, family, colleagues, and acquaintances in real time. So, I mightily think people should control their time and use of Facebook carefully.

Picture came from
Facebook maybe spend us too much time. Some people may think the online video game may take the biggest part of our online time; however, according to the research of the top ten sectors by share of U.S. internet time in June 2010 show that the social networks take 22.7%, but online games take only 10.2%. Thus, it is the time to leave your computer alone, and maybe stay with your friends.

According to the article 10 things to stop sharing on Facebook, I know use Facebook carefully will benefit with people privacy. For example, the article mentioned that put foursquare check-ins can be dangerous because most of people don’t care about where you go today; moreover, it is just an open invitation for creepy stalkers. In addition, the author suggest users stop talking about how much he or she hate his or her job on Facebook because even if you aren't friends with your boss or co-workers, that doesn't mean they can't find your rants.

In fact, I consider that Facebook can be a great tool if we know how to use it in a right way, learn more detail for how to use Facebook at

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Mid-autumn festival

独在异乡为异客,每逢佳节倍思亲.Alone as a stranger in a foreign land, every festivals people will be homesick a lot.

Today is the traditional festival of my hometown, which we called Mid-autumn festival. This was the third years that I did not stay with my family for this special day. I felt homesick because we believe the Mid-autumn means to have a reunion. Every family will be together to celebrate. However, I cannot go back home today; the only thing I can do is make a phone call to my mom. Thus, I want to share our festival here, and maybe we can celebrate here.

The Mid-autumn takes its name from the fact that it is always celebrated in the middle of the autumn season. The day is also known as the Moon Festival, as at that time of the year the moon is at it’s roundest. On this day, family members gather to appreciate the bright full moon, eat moon cakes at night, and express strong yearnings toward their homes and think of family members who live far away. The Mid-autumn festival is very interesting day for Chinese. We have a special lamp show. Also, every family will hanging red lamp out of their door in the past, and children can raise a lantern in their hands to attend the show. The types of the lantern are numerous. The most popular one in this special day are the dragon lantern.

In addition, we also have special food for this festival which we called Moon Cake. The reason why we call it Moon cake is because the moon cake is round in shape; it symbolizes the reunion of a family, so it is easy to understand how the eating of moon cakes under the round moon can inspire the missing of distant relatives. Nowadays, people present the moon cakes to relatives and friends to demonstrate that they wish them a long and happy life.

Happy Mid-autumn day and hope every family has a sweet night!

At last, I hope can share a traditional story for Mid-autumn in China: the story of the Chang-E.