Tony Silvia, Terry Anzur: Power Performance – Multimedia Storytelling

The chapter started off referring back to the days when sales of newspapers were big business and how one of the main ways of distributing newspapers was street sales through “newsboys”. It was these “newsboys” who coined the now famous phrase “extra extra”. The phrase indicated that an extra edition of that paper had been published that day.


Silvia and Anzur then went on to state how the web is more than an extension of newspapers but actually a medium where parts of stories can be told that cannot be told in traditional print media.


The also stated a number of “essentials”. Things that the web can do a lot better than newspapers. The first was slideshows which are in essence, photo essays, because the web user can scroll through at their own pace, they become interactive.


Next was maps and graphics, these can also be interactive and the authors suggested that audiences show a predisposition towards wanting them in articles. This is often because they can be personalised towards each user’s needs.


Next was audio and visual clips. The authors suggested that people enjoy being able to control what they watch and listen to, something that cannot be done at all in newspapers which can only pick specific quotes and with TV news, you only get the soundbites of audio or visual clips, this means that often, quotes can be taken out of context. However, with online news, you can have the option to post the full interview and that in-turn allows the user to choose exactly what they see and hear.


Finally, online news can give links to other online resources. They talked about how we live in a “google culture” where we can find pretty much anything. However, it is our responsibility as journalists to make sure that we provide the reader with the most reliable information possible, thus eliminating the readers need for “second party searching”.


The authors finished by talking about how our viewing habits of news differs in each medium. For example, newspaper readers tend to read one story at a time but have the option of flicking from story to story on different pages. TV news is forced to be linear, you must watch a certain segment or number of segments before you get to the one you want to see. However, with online news, you can read any story and be multi-tasking at the same time.