Lesson II-1: Intelligent search strategy

January 26th, 2009 by Jack

For this lesson, we’ll be referring to the blog’s “Nexis/Factiva tips” page and the documents I sent you via e-mail, but I do want to make one important point here…

With the exception of the most late-breaking stories when time is too tight, every story you write should be accompanied by (preferably preceded by) Nexis and/or Factiva searches on the story topic.  You can’t write a story properly without previous background.  A Google search is fine, but it is NOT a substitute for Nexis and Factiva, which have much deeper archives of RELIABLE source material.  The scarce embracement and command of Nexis and Factiva among Craft I students was most disappointing.  We’ll change that in Craft II.

Assignment due for class on 2/17 (and be prepared to discuss!): Using Nexis and/or Factiva (and nothing else), find at least five news stories in your Community District since school started in September, and write a brief “roundup” type report.  Don’t worry about a catchy lead, doing interviews or any of the other things you typically do when writing for publication.  This is a SEARCH exercise.  At the end of the report, I want Nexis/Factiva article citations and a listing of your search strategies (terminology).

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