Reflective piece for cross platform advanced

The second module of cross-platform journalism began in January and for this module, the aim was to take the lessons we’d been taught in semester one, then further develop them independently and use them more creatively. We were expected to run more regular shows and have more creative direction with the types of content we produced. We were given the option to decide what kind of work we wanted to produce and I decided that I wanted to be more focused on audio and producing radio shows.


 In one week we produced a radio show which included a movie review and a discussion about whether a university was worth it. In feedback or teacher, Vanessa stated that she felt that the show was a little bit boring and we just need to work a bit more on the types of content that we produced, so the next week we decided that we would focus on coming up with more creative ideas. When performing this new radio show we decided to make our theme tune for it and even named the show, the wicked wild radio show. In the show, we had a lot better more interesting content and got better feedback. We were looking forward to having the chance to even further progress with our radio skills and at that point, I started to feel that I was really getting the hang of using the radio studio and was looking forward to creating more content and further developing my skills.


In my development plan that I completed the last term, I was happy with my presenting skills and helping to film VTs as I felt that id performed well in that area, but wanted to focus on coming up with ideas, writing and working on my technical skills when it came to the live shows. The way I planned to measure if I’d achieved any of these goals was to have our news shows be more successful and also have my written work get noticeably better feedback.

Another one of my more personal targets was to get better at introducing myself to strangers. I always felt like when I was out filming with my group, I would get quite anxious when it came to speaking to strangers and asking them questions. My plan to get better at speaking and approaching strangers was to make a more conscious effort to try to do it (fake it till you make it) and I do feel that throughout the time when I was able to go out and film or record that I became more confident in doing so, however, I still feel that it’s something I need to continue to work on in the future.

Generally, with my Targets that I set myself for this module, I do feel that I made significant improvements in some areas however I also know that there’s still a lot of room to work on my skills. I worry that when I return to University, some of the things I was taught to do with technical skills I may have forgotten. I will be making the conscious effort to remind myself of any technical skills I could have forgotten while not being there.

How Coronavirus is impacting the club and music industry

Coronavirus has affected almost every aspect of our lives we can no longer go out and sit in cafes, we can’t go to visit friends and families in their homes and just generally can no longer live our normal lives. We have no idea how long the coronavirus is going to be affecting us, but for sure we know that many of the things that we used to enjoy are now going to be very different.


One industry, in particular, that is going to continue to be affected for a very long time is the music industry, in particular genres of music centered around going to clubs or music events. The reason the music and club industry is taking one of the biggest hits is that we’re no longer going to be able to congregate in large groups and many of these events will no longer go on or clubs are shut for the foreseeable future so where does that leave these artists and clubs?


Speaking to a Drum and Bass DJ and producer, Magnus Mcfarlane, He gave his opinion on what he thinks the future of the music and club scene looks like for him and fellow DJs, producers, club owners and event-goers.


Magnus said that he felt that in the wake of the coronavirus,  most of the DJ’s and producers around him had become far more creative and noted that a lot of the DJ’s had now begun learning how to produce. During the time that he had been in isolation, he had created a whole album. ‘I’ve had nothing to do so working on an album has been a massive escape for me and I know a lot of other producers have found making music to be a perfect outlet”.



Speaking about how the coronavirus has directly affected him and his work Magnus mentioned that he had had various gigs canceled as a result of clubs closing. “yeah it’s a shame I was meant to be doing two different gigs this month, one in Blue Mountain and one in Lakota, but Bristol council has slyly shut Lakota down permanently now while they could get away with it”. Lakota is a famous club in Bristol that has been threatened with closure for years and Bristol council has seized this opportunity to finally close it.

Above is a song that Magnus has produced while being in isolation.


Looking to the future of the clubbing and Drum n Bass scene it looks like although Music will still continuously be being produced by these artists, it may be a very long time before we get to see any of their work live.


When speaking about what he thought the future looks like for him and the music scene, Magnus stated that he expected a lot of the clubs and festivals would go out of business as he already knew some major festivals were in trouble because they had lost money spent on paying acts and as a result of having to refund festival-goers. “It’s complicated because technically the artists didn’t perform but 90% of the time they are paid before the events so they can’t ask the artists to give them. the money back”.

Festivals and clubs look to be closed for the foreseeable future, but it is clear that when they finally do make a comeback the music industry will be ready.

Some of the highlights from our interview can be found below. 



Extinction Rebellion hunger strikers in a bid to get attention of political parties

On the 18th of November members of the Extinction Rebellion from across the world began a 7-day hunger strike which aims to highlight the impact that climate and ecological change are having on global food supplies.

More than 400 people from 27 countries are taking part in the hunger strike.


People from as far as Russia and Canada will be striking from the 18th of November till the 25th of November. Member of the Extinction Rebellion organization has gathered at both the conservative party headquarters and the Labour party headquarters, where they will stay for the 7 days of their strike.

Extinction Rebellion aims to grab the attention of the political parties and the media in the hopes that they begin to take a more prominent stance on the climate crisis and commit to making changes.

In an open letter, XR released a letter urging political parties to meet with the members striking and to meet their 3 demands for them to “Tell the truth by declaring a Climate and Ecological Emergency” “Act now by promoting policies to halt biodiversity loss” and “Go Beyond Party Politics: by working with all parties to create, and be led by, the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice”.

Unfortunately, currently, as it stands, Extinction rebellion is yet to meet with any political leaders but are still hoping to grab their attention by protesting each day sitting outside their headquarters.

One member of the Extinction Rebellion, Bee has been protesting since the organization first began in October 2018, taking to the streets to accompany fellow members of XR in the protests in April around central London and even went to protests at Heathrow.

Bee began her hunger strike on the 18th of November with it ending on the 25th, unlike her fellow members who planned to continue their strike until the general election on December 12th.

Speaking about her reasoning for committing to the hunger strike Bee expressed “For many years I’ve been concerned about climate change and there’s not enough being done fast enough”.

Both the Labour party and Conservative party leaders have failed to comment on the Extinction Rebellion hunger strike and when contacted refused to comment on the matter

In a final statement aimed towards students and other young people, Bee insisted that they “Don’t be afraid of change” and that they must learn “you don’t have to do without, you just have to change how you do what you do”.

Both the Labour party and Conservative party leaders have failed to comment on the Extinction Rebellion hunger strike and when contacted refused to comment on the matter.


Young striker Sophie Andrews, Petra Metzger, and Bee Holland will sit outside the Labour headquarters for the duration of their Hunger strike.





Smart Benches Causing Havoc For Residents In Southwark

Southwark council piloted 20 solar powered ‘smart’ benches’ in Southwark in 2017 and plans to install more in the coming years, but residents claim they are nothing but bad news.

Consisting of a wooden bench with a strip like steel structure that wraps around it, 4 built in charging cables and free WiFi so that users can charge their phones while they sit, all while using renewable energy. the solar panel collects and stores energy throughout the day to provide electricity.

Sarah a local resident stated ‘I don’t feel safe walking past the benches at night there is always a group of homeless men there drinking’. As a local resident passing the benches is not a choice for Sarah so encounters like the one she described have the potential to happen daily.

Islington council is another borough that installed the smart benches, but were forced to get rid of four out of the five as a result of the benches being a target for anti-social behavior and fears of phone snatching.

After being contacted Southwark council failed to get back to us to make a statement about the smart benches. Southwark council has further plans to install more smart benches in the coming years, hoping that they will bring more people together but will they achieve the opposite?


‘No Turkey’ Christmas Sandwich Review

Marks and Spencer’s has just taken leaps in the vegan Christmas sandwich game in bringing out the first of its kind, a sandwich featuring a meat substitute! Gone are the days of ‘festival falafel’ sandwiches because marks and Spencer’s have swooped in and changed it all.


Marks and Spencer’s first announced in September that they would be broadening their vegan Christmas range after the demand for meat substitutes substantially grown over the last year. The range features all sorts of brand-new vegan options from pecan nut roasts to sandwiches but the most anticipated of them was the ‘no turkey feast’ sandwich made with spinach, soy chunks and cranberry sauce on malted brown bread.


At first glance, the sandwich is visually appealing with a mixture of bright vibrant colors displaying all the fillings, deep red cranberry sauce, leafy green spinach, Grey toned soy chunks all met by soft malted bread the true essence of what a Christmas sandwich should be. Like most sandwiches in the packaging, it appears to look well filled but as soon it’s taken out you soon realize it was all a rouse and past the first centimeter you are met with just a mixture of cranberry sauce and spinach while the latter is filled with thick soy chunks the size of 50 pence pieces. Unfortunately upon opening the sandwich you soon discover that the sandwich is not only extremely overfilled and overpowered by cranberry sauce but is also seeping with some sort of white sauce which I do believe was meant to be vegan mayonnaise.


As for the taste, it cannot be faulted you truly do feel like you are feasting on a turkey sandwich, the malted bread only compliments it further adding a slight kick while the cranberry adds a sweet Christmas feel however at points it can be rather overpowering particularly where there are not pieces of soy to match its sweet taste.


The ‘No turkey’ sandwich will be available until early January in all M&S stores located in the sandwich section.

Artists room:Jenny Holzer exhibition review

Jenny Holzer has been chosen to display her work in the Tate Modern’s artists’ rooms along with a variety of artists from around the world. Her exhibition features projections, stone benches, textiles, plaques, posters, and paintings. Jenny’s artistic style is very word influenced, with the majority of her pieces being very word central.

The most popular part of the exhibition is the ‘BLUE PURPLE TILT’ consisting of 7 led signs that lean against a wall. The led signs have different messages that rotate up quickly reading out various quotes from her previous exhibitions such as ‘I find my skin a cover’. The visitors all queued up to take pictures in front of the led lights.

I found it rather comical that the most popular part of the exhibition was something that could be used for a photo opportunity especially considering that the aims of the exhibition were the opposite of that. Jenny Holzer wanted people to disorientate and transfix people not have people use her exhibition for an Instagram picture.


Jenny Holzer’s work provokes thought through words but is her message truly conveyed?

The exhibition has been on since the 23rd of July and will run until the 31st of July 2019 at the Tate Modern located on floor 4.

Southbank Winter Market

Southbank is playing host to the notorious Christmas festival. It is expected millions will visit the area in the run-up to Christmas. The winter festival has various stalls selling everything from hand-carved wooden wine bottle holders to handmade soaps all located along the waterfront in Southbank and will go on from November 9th till January 6th, 2019. The festival also features a Rekorderlig winter bar selling all sorts of winter-themed drinks including mulled wine and spiced cider, there is also great food and rides.

Upon arrival I was greeted by a flock of tourists who all seemed to be mindlessly walking and routinely stopping to stare at lights or take pictures of something on the ground who knows, but as I walked up to the entrance I was approached by a security guard who checked my bag which I can only assume was to make sure i didn’t have any alcohol in there and would be forced to spend £6 plus on a drink.

The floor plan was unexpectedly bumpy considering it is set up a relatively flat surfaces place. As you follow the path round you are met with the aromas of hog roast mixed with mulled wine and there are lights everywhere making everything feel festive I must admit. There was various different types of food there from your bog standard chips to authentic Jamaican food it all looked great but what stood out the most was the free standing two floored bars built purely for the Christmas festival. Inside the decor was unexpectedly nice with large oak tables, white faux fair sofas and Christmas anthems playing in the background, the staff however looked less than happy to be there but who could blame them I wonder how many times a day they had to explain what mulled wine is to tourists.

I decided to go for the spiced plum Rekorderlig which definitely did not disappoint! The taste was everything you could expect at a Christmas festival fruity, tangy but with slight kick of cinnamon. As i sat and sipped my lukewarm pint on the balcony of the bar I had a good look at customers on the ride in the festival, a giant swing which appears exciting for the 3 people on it but who could blame people for not wanting to ride it when it cost £7 to ride. When it came to finally leaving, the guests are asked to take a back street exit that backs on a side road in the Southbank area and are ushered out by hostile security guards.

Whether you want to get dad some moonshine to get him through Boxing Day or your sister a ridiculous wooden duck in wellingtons Southbank Christmas market certainly will not fail to get you in the festive mood but also be prepared to be ripped off


Plans to scrap the RV1 bus

It is proposed that spring 2019 the RV1 bus will be withdrawn due to a decline in usage.

The RV1 bus goes from Waterloo to Covent Garden serving various landmarks and attractions like the Tower of London, Borough Market, the shard, and many theatres in London Covent Garden. The RV1 is one of the few hydrogen buses in central London.

Hamish McCallum, the councillor for north Bermondsey wrote a letter to TFL posting it to twitter stating that he felt the statistics for the bus were not fair as the RV1 had gone under major diversions from 2016-2018 and that since the statistics show an increase in usage with an estimated 15000 people using the bus on a weekly basis.

A comment under the post read ‘fewer buses is a good thing bus rides r so unhealthy and depressing’  source/@Kim_lorio.


The 9th of November was the last date for people to submit their thoughts to TFL and a final choice is expected to be made and announced in the coming weeks.

How the role of journalists have changed as a result of the advancement in technology

The role of the journalists has really changed and developed over the last 10 years in many ways as a result of technology involving and the creation of social media. 

One of the main changes is the way in which we receive news,  In the past we would have to solely rely on newspapers and television to receive news and there was no such thing as user generated content where as now there is a wide range of platforms to receive news as well as a new wave of journalism known as citizen journalism this is usually in the form of tweets or posts online.

There are some benefits to this new form of journalism, it means that there is now opportunity for everyone to be a journalist and we are not isolated to only receiving information from big news publications. Another big benefit is accuracy with New things like live tweeting there is a lot more reliability in the news as there is often little proof or witnesses to news stories.

As for journalists the rise in technology and social media could be seen as a negative thing because it means that the is not so much of a demand for them or at least in comparison to how it once was of course a journalist working for a news publication can still report own new story but now so can anyone. There is Increasingly a lack of belief in journalism or trust as a result of various different scandals that have happened over the years to do with accuracy and public privacy. 


Local businesses expected to boom as Christmas festival opens

Thousands flock to Southbank as the much loved world known Christmas festival began on Friday and will go on for 6 weeks.It is expected that millions will visit the area in the run up to Christmas meaning local businesses expect to thrive. On average, local businesses in the Southwark boroughs in 2017 made 23% more money in the festive period in comparison to the rest of the year and in 2018 it is expected to rise as the festival is even bigger than last year.

Speaking to the local pub owner, Keith Hill expressed his excitement stating ‘business is really going to boom before Christmas because of the market’.

The winter festival has a range of different stalls selling everything from hand carved wooden wine bottle holders to handmade soaps all located along the waterfront in Southbank and will go on from November 9th till January 6th 2019.