Showcasing digital skills: My application for Digital First Media’s ideaLab

Applicants for Digital First Media’s ideaLab were asked to submit a 200-word explanation on how they would use a tablet, smartphone and laptop to change the journalism business for the better.
Here’s what I came up with, using Storify:
  1. York, PA — The young multi-platform business journalist choked on her stale newsroom coffee when the boss handed her an iPad and said he didn’t want to see her face in the office.
  2.      Lauren Boyer had only ever read about this phenomenon. But as she watched her colleagues, tethered to desks by spiraling
    landline cords, she finally saw the writing on the cubicle walls, between which
    no news had ever happened.
    With vigor, she set off in search of stories (and, if luck would have it, a tastier cup of joe.)
  3.      She perused the interwebs for apps like 360 Pano shots and video, which transformed routine assignments, like this sale of Pfaltzgraff pottery, into cool online packages.
    Twitter relationships began to facilitate real ones, which come in handy when you least expect it.
  4. Heading to the #YorkPA Pfaltzgraff sale to do some reporting tomorrow. Anyone else going?

September 21, 2011 4:17:23 PM EDT
  • @laurenboyer I’m going to Pfaltzgraff sale Thursday AM #YorkPA

    September 21, 2011 4:24:37 PM EDT
  • @paradelady I should be there at 9. I’ll be the freak carrying an iPad around. Say hi if you see me! #YorkPA #Iloveyorkcity

    September 21, 2011 4:28:40 PM EDT
  • @laurenboyer OK, will look for you. I will likely be wearing something green in color 🙂 #YorkPA #Iloveyorkcity

    September 21, 2011 4:34:39 PM EDT
  • Just ran into @paradelady . She picked up salt and pepper shakers from Acadia collection for 50cents each. #Iloveyorkcity #Pfaltzgraff

    September 22, 2011 9:45:32 AM EDT
  •      She put her newsroom on wheels, trekking to the rural bounds of the county in her green Toyota. There, she found the little diner with a big personality.
  • I’m at Papertown restaurant and Dairy Bar (Spring grove)

    October 13, 2011 8:14:32 AM EDT
  • Second I walk in “Are you the reporter?” #success

    October 13, 2011 8:18:05 AM EDT
  • Talking to Grover Cleveland McCoury, older brother of bluegrass hall of famer Dale McCoury. #YorkPA

    October 13, 2011 9:31:14 AM EDT
  •      A few days later,a surprise arrived in the mail.

  • Got some fan mail today from Grover Cleveland McCoury, whom I met last week in Spring Grove. Cool old bluegrass pics.

    October 18, 2011 2:50:48 PM EDT
  •      As time went on, social media BECAME her notepad.
  • “York is small. We don’t have a wall street … What would you occupy?” #occupyyork

    October 12, 2011 7:38:33 PM EDT
  • “This is occupy York. What the hell are we going to Harrisburg for?” #occupyyork

    October 12, 2011 8:34:37 PM EDT
  • “I don’t think 25 people walking around York city right now will draw a lot of attention.” #occupyyork

    October 12, 2011 8:41:31 PM EDT
  •      A notepad with attitude. A notepad that talked back.
  • On voting: If you agree, put your hands up like “spirit fingers,” woman speaking says. #Iloveyorkcity #occupyyork

    October 12, 2011 7:48:59 PM EDT

  • @parva_x @blandanace Spirit fingers = I vote yes at #occupyyork @xomelissasue @nomiddlenamemeg

    October 12, 2011 7:57:19 PM EDT
  • @laurenboyer @parva_x @BlandaNace @xomelissasue They should have voted against voting with spirit fingers.

    October 12, 2011 7:58:20 PM EDT
  • @nomiddlenamemeg @laurenboyer @parva_x @xomelissasue ha. And heads explode. How do I vote? LOL

    October 12, 2011 8:02:06 PM EDT
  • @BlandaNace @laurenboyer @nomiddlenamemeg @parva_x protesting with spirit fingers will surely add to them getting took seriously ha

    October 12, 2011 8:03:46 PM EDT
  •      The story turned out pretty spiffy. (Well, someone thought so.)
  • @stefanjbecket @BlandaNace This is the first time I’ve heard jazz hands being used in a political forum. It had to be noted.

    October 13, 2011 5:34:13 AM EDT
  •      What’s next for Lauren? Ideally, ideaLab.
    While she’s filed full-length stories on the iPad’s tiny keyboard, it wasn’t pretty — a factor that limits her mobile journalism to a once-in-a-while model.
    A laptop’s keyboard, suitable for her “man hands,” would promote daily activity in a cubicle-free world.
    The smartphone would live in her purse, summoning the abilities of the other two devices 24/7 for anytime coverage and instant editing of videos like this one and this one.
    Journalism doesn’t stop just because her timecard says so.
    She’s got a nose for finding stories just about everywhere — in the ladies’ room, grocery store, or bar.
    And if you’re really lucky, she’ll embarrass herself on camera to tell one.

To start, we are going to equip 25 MediaNews Group employees with the latest tools and give them the time and money to experiment with them. Each member of the ideaLab will be equipped, initially, with a Smartphone, tablet and laptop.

The Company will carve out 10 hours a week from their regular jobs to allow them time to experiment with these tools and report back on how we can change our business for the better. And we will add an extra $500 per month to their pay. Other than that –there are no rules.


One response to “Showcasing digital skills: My application for Digital First Media’s ideaLab

  1. Pingback: Honored to be a chosen for Digital First Media’s ideaLab — no rules, just tools | BY LAUREN BOYER

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