Many people making a professional website for the first time make the mistake of focusing too much on the design aspect. It’s true that both are important, a nice looking and intuitive website will give your visitors a good experience but the most important thing that will be the foundation of your website and keep it going in the long run will be cold hard cash. Continue reading
With the release of Newsweek’s final print issue only a month ago many couldn’t help view the release as yet another nail in the coffin of print media. But although print media may soon be extinct journalism as a medium is far from over, on the contrary, it’s evolving, growing online at a pace never seen before.
Mark Briggs‘s new book Entrepreneurial Journalism explores the decline of print news journalism but also points out the exciting places where the medium is heading online. According to Briggs online journalism is growing at a significantly faster pace than its print forefather. It took The New York Times 50 long years to reach 30,000 subscribers. Online journalist upstarts on the other hand have managed to gain 13 million visitors in little four years, more than the website of established newspapers such as the Washington Post and Wall Street Journal.
Upstarts run by a new generation of passionate writers and entrepreneurs are in the lead . Briggs says this is because they have been innovating and pushing the technology forward in creative and interesting new ways that brings the user to the forefront of a unique experience that print could never provide.
So what’s needed to make a successful startup site? According to Briggs one important factor is learning from the industry’s past mistakes. As the internet became more common in households news organizations took to the web, but only as a means of having a cheap extension of their static printed editions. The innovators on the other hand realized that more could be done. Their product? Niche websites.
Niche sites aimed at delivering hyper local news or sites dedicated solely to sports, music, movies, and other forms of entertainment were some of the results of innovation. These sites also engaged the audiences and gave readers a multitude of ways of consuming their content: video, interactive maps, slideshows, comment systems, and so on.
Rafat Ali was an unemployed journalist hungry for work but had trouble getting hired. He spent his free time on his own blog which focused on covering business media. He worked on the site relentlessly and managed to secure some funds through built in advertising. What started as a small blog soon turned into a website called ContentNext. The site was bought in 2008 by The Guardian for over a million dollars.
Other website had similar humble beginning also focusing on niche topics. Chicago’s very own The Red Line Project was started in the classroom by journalist professor Mike Reilley and his journalism students at DePaul. The website’s unique focus was on hyper local stories that are close to Chicago’s CTA red line stops. Since it inception the site has won a number of awards.
With a strong work ethic, a unique vision, a niche, and a little luck, anyone today can create a successful startup website.
By Milos Markicevic and Abigail Jimenez
Jamie Masada, owner of a chain of successful comedy clubs in the US, opened a new location in Lakeview on Feb. 23. Named the “The Real King of comedy” by The New York Daily, Masada is responsible for helping jumpstart the careers of many comedians and has been actively involved in the comedy business for 33 years.
The Chicago location was opened in what had previously been the Lakeview Theatre. The high cost of maintaining the 100 year-old building forced the original owner to close down the theatre in April of last year. Continue reading
Record Store Day, a annual event that celebrates vinyl records and independent record stores with special limited releases, celebrated its fifth year on Sunday April 21. Many music fans went out to support their local stores, but some collectors chose to hold on to their wallets this year.
Enthusiasts say the event has strayed far from its roots of supporting independent record stores and that the event has become a cash-in for big record labels who mostly re-release old artists. Others complain that ‘flippers” simply scalp the limited edition releases on websites like ebay.
My storify report on the NATO helicopters seen around Chicago recently.
The upcoming NATO summit has caused Loop university campuses to restructure their schedules around the event. DePaul, Columbia, and Roosevelt are the three major universities that have confirmed they will be closed for the duration of the NATO summit.
Other areas that will be closed off include Burnham Harbor. The harbor’s ships will be moved to another location with no expense to the owners.
DePaul has also moved it’s FEST event to June 1 and changed the graduation location for its law students. The graduation will now be held at Akoo Theatre in Rosemont. The location of these places has been pinpointed on the map below.