One Plus One Equals Three: Edition Three

A snackable summary of interesting things that have happened in and around our industry over the last month or so.

  • John Harris is a Guardian columnist who writes on politics and popular culture. His pioneering, powerful web series “Anywhere but Westminster” has created a new model of political reporting. As its name suggests, “Anywhere but Westminster” sees Harris and his producing partner travel all over Britain to talk about politics, Brexit and other issues with the people they meet. This 30-minute video explains how they’ve developed a new form of ‘vox pop’ reporting, arguably more meaningful than the vast majority of political commentary.
  • Would you believe it if you found out that Google hides 20 percent of relevant information in each search? Cameron Lai, of Victoria University of Wellington, takes a deep dive into the search engines’ algorithms.
  • The Detail podcast looks into the raid on two journalists and the ABC offices by the Australian Federal Police in Sydney earlier this month, that has shocked the Fourth Estate.
  • Following the altered Nancy Pelosi video which Facebook declined to remove, a group of artists and an advertising company have created a “deepfake” video of Mark Zuckerburg, positioning the Facebook founder in a very sinister light – a stunt to put the social media platform’s content moderation policies to the test.
  • The New York Times “The Truth Is Worth It” campaign from Droga5 is well worth watching, and won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Festival of Creativity 2019 (effectively the Oscars of the advertising industry). It’s powerful in its simplicity and a timely reminder of why, perhaps more so than ever, we need journalism.
  • In an interesting example of ‘poacher turned game-keeper’ former British Deputy Prime Minister, Sir Nick Clegg, provides commentary on leadership in the technological age. The irony, of course, is that he does so in his capacity as Facebook’s Head of Global Affairs.
  • A study conducted by RNZ National illustrates the popularity of podcasts as a medium for consuming content is on the rise. With more than a third of respondents listening to podcasts at least once a week and almost half being under 45, we see this trend continuing.
  • The Spinoff has officially announced its new membership program and a collaboration with Penguin Random House New Zealand. The membership allows readers to contribute as much as they can afford, with anyone contributing more than $80 annually receiving the first copies of “The Spinoff Book” – a collaboration between Penguin and the news outlet. The move is a bid to create better dialogue between The Spinoff and its members (and of course supplement the commercial funding they receive from their suite of sponsors).