Week 810/18 Profiles and Holiday Event coverage

Week 9, Oct. 20
Today we’ll talk about profiles and discuss how to cover events.

We’ll start with a news quiz.

Read these profiles:
Frank Giorgio

Yuan Yuan Tan

Cecil Williams

Your professor will be in Atlanta at the College Media Association Fall Convention the week of Oct. 24-28 so we will not have class on Oct. 25.

Week 7 10/11 Library Resources/Public Records

Here’s the agenda for today:

Guest Speaker: Nicole Allensworth SFSU  librarian


(415) 338-6138

Research Assistance Desk:

JOUR 300 Research Guide

Public Records:

Pre-election story id due next week, 10/18.
Public records assignment is due in two weeks, 10/25.


Week 6 10/4 Elections

Today we’ll talk about the upcoming election and how journalists cover elections.

Where to get information:

San Francisco Department of Elections

Alameda County Registrar of Voters

Campaign Finance


Background info


Ten tips for reporters covering elections worldwide

In-class exercise: Choose a race or ballot measure you want to cover. Start doing research and find an angle for a story. You could write an explanatory piece about a local or statewide ballot initiative or a local race or focus on campaign finance in a particular race or issue. You could also localize an issue to your neighborhood, like how people who work in local medical marijuana dispensaries feel about the state Proposition 64, the California Marijuana Legalization Initiative or how new voters in your neighborhood feel about the election. Or you could take poll results and then flesh them out by talking to people. You could also cover an election-related event. See:

San Francisco League of Women Voters
Board of Supervisors, District 7 Candidates’ Debate, Thursday, Oct. 6, 6:30 p.m. UCSF-Parnassus Campus
Board of Supervisors, District 1 Candidates’ Debate, Thursday, Oct. 13, 6:30 p.m., University of San Francisco

SF Republican Party Town Hall Meeting – District 10
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Bayview Public Library: 5075 3rd Street, San Francisco

League of Women Voters of Oakland
See long list of possible events at http://www.lwvoakland.org/calendar.html

The Election Sessions – Prop Party San Francisco
Wednesday, Oct. 19 (deadline will be extended if you want to cover this)
6:30 -8 p.m.
Impact Hub San Francisco
901 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA

Ballots and Brews
Join KQED and Brigade for Ballots and Brews, a fun and informative voter party that will help unravel the state’s 17 propositions and other mysteries about voting. There will be an election pub quiz, prizes, refreshments and, most importantly, lively conversations about politics and the issues of our times.
Tuesday, October 11 6:30 p.m.  to 8:30 p.m.
524 3rd St.
San Francisco, CA 94107

We’ll also discuss the profile assignment and how to write a good pitch.







Week 5 Field Trip to City Hall

On Sept. 27 we will meet at 2 p.m. at San Francisco City Hall, 1 Dr Carlton B Goodlett Place. We’ll meet at the San Francisco Board of Supervisors chambers, Room 250, on the second floor. Here is a map and directions: http://sfgsa.org/index.aspx?page=1175.
Please try to get there on time so you’ll get to see the whole meeting.
From SFSU, the best way to get to City Hall is to take the M-Oceanside inbound/downtown to the Civic Center station and then walk west on Grove and north on Polk Street. You can’t miss City Hall, it’s the grand building with the dome.
If you plan to drive, metered parking is available on Van Ness, McAllister, Grove, and Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place. A CityPark underground parking lot is located on McAllister, between Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place and Larkin. For driving directions, please see the directions here, or visit Google Maps.

The agenda is available online. Please review it before coming to the meeting.

You are expected to write a 350- to 500-word news story about one item on the board’s agenda and post it to iLearn by 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 28. Remember to include your source list (with names and contact info for all your sources) at the end of the assignment.



Week 4 Covering Local Government — Meetings and Elections

The agenda for today:

— News Quiz
— Video: Framing a Story: What it’s Really About
— Third places blog post

Discussion of how local government works and how to cover government meetings.

Oakland City Council

SF Board of Supervisors

SF Supervisorial Districts by Neighborhood

Board committees

San Francisco Government TV

The lingo

  • Ordinance — legislation which amends municipal codes and makes laws; must be approved by 6 of the 11 supervisors. Ordinances require consideration at two separate meetings with at least five days intervening, a first reading and a final passage.
  • Resolution — a policy statement to express approval or disapproval; must be approved by 6 of the 11 supervisors.
  • Motion — a formal proposal for action
  • Environmental Impact Report — a report that provides the public and the decision-makers with detailed information about a project’s environmental effects, ways to minimize the project’s significant environmental effects, and reasonable alternatives to the project
  • Ralph M. Brown Act: “All meetings of the legislative body of a local agency shall be open and public, and all persons shall be permitted to attend any meeting of the legislative body of a local agency, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.”

Brown Act Primer: Access to Meetings, First Amendment Coalition

Pocket Guide to the Brown Act
A guide to the Ralph M. Brown Act

California Sunshine Ordinance: San Francisco
California Sunshine Ordinance: Oakland

How legislation is introduced, reviewed and adopted

Next week we will take a field trip to San Francisco City Hall. Meet in the Board of Supervisors Chambers on the second floor of City Hall, 1 Dr Carlton B Goodlett Place, San Francisco, CA 94102.  If you are traveling from SFSU take the M Oceanside line toward downtown and get off at Civic Center.  Walk north on Larkin or Polk Street and make a left on Grove. Directions to City Hall.

Please download and study the agenda, which will be available online on Thursday or Friday.

Sample Board of Supervisors agenda

Sample news stories about a board meeting:

Week 3 Community Journalism Forum

This week we’ll start class with a community journalism forum featuring:

The forum is open to all SFSU journalism students. We’ll explore the role of the community press and learn how you can intern or freelance work for these publications.

Later in the afternoon we’ll discuss:

Need help with your writing? Visit the Learning Assistance Center!

Week 2 Developing a Beat/Interviewing

Week 2 Sept. 6 Developing a Beat/Interviewing
Today we’ll discuss the triumphs and challenges you faced in your first week of neighborhood reporting.

Also on the agenda:

  • What makes a good pitch?
    * Concise but informed
    * Why should people care? Why it’s relevant, important or otherwise newsworthy
    * Why now? Look for news peg whenever possible
    * Whiff of the meat — telling details that will capture people’s interest
  • Real estate/business story pitches
  • Reporting skills: How to get information, developing your reporting style, finding story ideas, taking notes, cultivating sources
  • Interviewing
  • Entry exam — common mistakes

For next week:

Write your BEAT REPORT in question-and-answer format (due Sept. 13). List the source after each question.

Report and write your business/real estate story (due Sept. 20).

Prepare for the Community Reporting Forum during class on Sept. 13 by reading the publications of our guest speakers:

Please prepare at least two questions for the panelists.

For your neighborhood website:

  • Create a website using WordPress.com
  • Use a name with the neighborhood in it (ex. Chinatown Times, Mission Musings, West Oakland Oracle)
  • Write an About page that includes information about you and how you plan to cover your neighborhood. Make it professional and engaging.
  • Work on your blog theme, choosing one that reflects your neighborhood. Add photos to the header to tailor your blog to your neighborhood.
  • Add some links to businesses, resources and publications relevant to your neighborhood. For examples see Castro Continues and PlanetCastro and the Western Addition Edition.
  • Add a brief post to your website. It could be some photos, an interview, a news brief — something that shows you’re keeping on top of what’s happening in the neighborhood.

Welcome to Reporting San Francisco

Welcome to the website for Rachele Kanigel’s JOUR 300 Reporting course, Fall 2016

Week 1 Aug. 30

https://i1.wp.com/www.omicsonline.org/journal-highlight-images/journalism.jpgThe agenda for today: