Archive for March, 2009

New bylines!

March 29th, 2009 by Jack

It’s been a while since I’ve posted any class bylines…

Tim Persinko had a story in the Daily News last week about merchants struggling along Avenue U in Brooklyn.

On “The Local” blog for the New York Times, Mary Stachyra wrote a piece about a Public Advocate candidates forum and Kristen Joy Watts had a photo credit on another post.

Last but not least, Marcella Veneziale teamed up with Jeanmarie Evelly in City Limits to report on how pension changes could spur an exodus of nurses.

Kudos, all!

See you on April 7th!

March 26th, 2009 by Jack

On April 7th, Barbara Gray, who put together the immigration handout, will give you the same social networking presentation she gives to New York Times reporters.  I’ll be “along for the ride,” but the research lesson that morning will be hers.  It looks like we may also have a special visitor.

In the meantime, I’d like you to read the Times policy on social networking as well as the social networking material I’ve posted to the blog since the fall.  Although I won’t be able to hold you accountable for reading any of it prior to the 7th, I can hold you accountable for it on the final quiz, so you may as well familiarize yourself with it now, when it makes sense.

Also, for a laugh, check out the Twitter video below!

Lesson II-5: Immigration research

March 24th, 2009 by Jack

For today’s lesson, we have two handouts: the first is the Brooklyn immigration project primer from Jere Hester, and the second is a lengthy list of immigration resources from my Research Methods colleague Barbara Gray (with assistance from Barbara Oliver).

Of course, the key resources on Jere’s handout are the Community District Profiles, the list of Brooklyn Community Districts, and most importantly, the New York City Department of Education page.

Barbara Gray’s handout begins with several good articles for you to read.  I would suggest the most noteworthy for you to check out is the seven-part Remade in America series currently underway at the Times.  Don’t miss all the bells and whistles accompanying the main articles.  You’ll see more each Sunday until the project is finished, so keep looking.  Excellent stuff!

She also lists numerous statistical resources, and tells me that the Population Reference Bureau’s Immigration Data Matters report in the “U.S. Agencies and Statistics” section is a particularly useful guide to stats nationwide.  Additionally, she suggested I stress that some oft-cited immigration-related organizations–such as the Center for Immigration Studies–often have an agenda, hence her link.  So be careful.

Barbara Oliver recommends the New York City Department of Education’s Office of English Language Learners report as a great source re: schools and recent immigrants, Gotham Gazette’s “The Citizen” page and the handout’s experts section.

What sources do I recommend?  Definitely the Department of Homeland Security’s Yearbook of Immigration Statistics listed in last week’s federal government handout.  Also, Infoshare Online, RAND New York, NYCdata and the New York State Statistical Yearbook, all of which I had listed in my Craft I cops and crime handout for different statistics.  Note that the information contained within is dated to varying degrees, however.

Looking for…?

March 18th, 2009 by Jack

Looking for public records?  According to a Sunshine Week survey jointly sponsored by the American Society of Newspaper Editors, the National Freedom of Information Coalition and the Society of Professional Journalists, online access varies widely by state.

Looking for more Jon Stewart skewering of CNBC? (more…)

Lesson II-4: Federal government

March 16th, 2009 by Jack

Points of emphasis for critical thinking:

  1. As you may remember from elementary school, there are three branches of the federal government–executive, legislative and judicial.  For the purposes of this lesson, we’ll be concentrating mainly on executive branch offices and resources.  (The judicial branch was covered in the fall during the Craft I courts lesson.)
  2. The executive branch is comprised of cabinet-level departments (e.g. Secretary of State heads State Department, Secretary of Defense heads Defense Department, etc.).  There are also various bureaus, agencies, administrations, commissions, boards and offices.  Some of these (e.g. Census Bureau, FAA, FBI, FEMA) are part of the executive branch departments.  Others (e.g. CIA, EPA, FCC, FDIC, FECNASA, NTSB, SEC) are independent of them.
  3. As is the case with, there are many federal government resources and databases not easily found from the main pages of sites, and even if you luck out and find them via a Google search, the information contained within rarely can be found without going to the resource and database pages themselves.  Thus, the more you familiarize yourself with them, the better.
  4. Among the most useful federal government resources are those provided by the Census Bureau, which we’ll discuss more during a separate lesson later in the semester.  There are also great databases related to labor, occupational safety, campaign finance, education, health, transportation, crime and business.  See this lesson’s handout for more details.

Another new local news outlet

March 11th, 2009 by Jack

I mentioned The Local earlier this week. NBC has launched New York Nonstop as well, a possible competitor to NY1. See video below.

Behind the Scenes at WNBC’s New York Nonstop from Broadcasting & Cable on Vimeo.

New York Times notes

March 9th, 2009 by Jack

A couple of you asked about yesterday’s Times story on neighborhood happiness in relation to your research-inspired enterprise story, so I figured I’d post the link for everyone.  Don’t forget your pitch is due tomorrow…and this is one that must be sent to me for approval, unlike other assignments where forwarding pitches to me is optional.

Speaking of the Times, I assume all of you have been made aware of The Local?  I would think it’s something many of you might consider as a way to get your work out there beyond our school’s walls, especially if you’re not already doing that.  Read more from Jeff Jarvis and the Nieman Journalism Lab.

Business follow up: more embarrassment for CNBC

March 6th, 2009 by Jack

On Tuesday, Mark pointed us to Charlie Gasparino’s bad phone etiquette. Things got even worse for CNBC Wednesday night. If you haven’t already seen it, cable comedy king Jon Stewart skewered the network, fair editing or not. (more…)

A *free* premium research source for N.Y. residents

March 6th, 2009 by Jack

For anyone with a New York State driver’s license or a New York Public Library card, the New York Online Virtual Electronic Library provides access to several premium resources.  You may find the Newspaper databases and MasterFILE Select particularly useful.

NAICS, SIC and more

March 4th, 2009 by Jack

While doing company searches yesterday, we ran across NAICS, which I told you was an international industry code akin to the SIC (Standard Industrial Classification) code, but I didn’t know what the acronym represented.  So I checked, and it stands for “North American Industry Classification System.”  For background on the relationship between the two codes, click here or here.  To search or translate codes, click here or here.

Also, one more good business database we have access to through school is STAT-USA.  Give it a spin for business, trade, and economic information from across the federal government.