Link roundup: Demographics, Quora, Instagram and news from old media

File under “Good to Know”

  • In not-at-all-shocking news, a Pew study shows the Internet Gains on Television as Public’s Main News Source . Since 2007, the number of 18 to 29 year olds citing the internet as their main source has nearly doubled, from 34% to 65%. Not surprising numbers, but notable nonetheless. This should have TV stations that rely on their newscasts as the sole breaking news source shaking in their boots.
  • Twitter Media gets into what makes good hashtags work. As someone who frequently struggles with the issue of deciding when and how to use hashtags, this post on the well-known hashtag work of 106 & Park really underscores why theirs work so well. For one, they aren’t forced news tags.

New-ish Tools for News

  • Last week, online media watchers wet their collective pants over Instagram, an iPhone photo-sharing application with a built-in social network, when Mashable highlighted how NPR is using it to connect with its audience. NPR, as usual, is out connecting on another app before everyone else – but whether this experiment will pay off is another story. As of right now, the app is only on iPhone, but it’s user base is growing by leaps and bounds. Judging from the comments on the Mashable post, those using it aren’t pleased at the prospect of influx of media.
  • On a related note, The Atlantic’s Alexis Madrigal gives a good and personal explanation of Instagram’s appeal.
  • I didn’t wet my pants, but I fell in love with Instagram too. I’ve started using its nice filters on my personal Tumblr project, 365 Snapshots.
  • I’m not sure where it started, but there was also a new media gold rush last week to Quora, an online question-and-answer oriented discussion site. Everyone wants to know how it could be used for journalism, especially since it is such a tame, smart (on the surface at least) community that is curating information. My colleague Daniel Victor blogged about some potential uses and started a topic on Quora looking for ideas (very meta) and. We’ll see where it goes. I know my coworkers at TBD are hard at work on this one.

Paywalls, paywalls!

  • The Dallas Morning News is taking a lot of content behind a paywall, with the old argument “because we have to” and “other newspapers do it”. The comments do not belie a supportive readership. The monthly digital-only price seems quite high to me.
  • The Daily O’Collegian, the campus newspaper for Oklahoma State, is also going behind a paywall for non-local readers. This may be the one instance in which I think a paywall makes perfect sense for a newspaper. It does make me feel for the student journalists who will try to use their links there for clips, however. Maybe they can give out a special coded version or something?

Real names are the answer – again

Fun Project

  • NY Times project Mapping America: Every City, Every Block allows users to browse local data from the Census, based on samples from 2005 to 2009 on an easily understood map. I’m in love with it and wish TBD had the budget to build something similar.
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