More notes at http://tanguay.info/learntracker
C O U R S E 
Making Sense of News
Masato Kajimoto, University of Hong Kong
C O U R S E   L E C T U R E 
The Use of Press Releases in Journalism
Notes taken on May 29, 2015 by Edward Tanguay
why care about news
some news stories directly affect our lives
numerous people taking to the street in your community
a deadly disease that breaks out
the unemployment rate reaching a record high
today what we do on the Internet can determine news
e.g. picture posted on Facebook of racist restaurant sign in China that was picked up as a story by many international papers
our actions are becoming part of the news
more and more people are getting their news through social media channels
more and more, what we like, share, tweet, comment and tag influences what news is seen
through the Internet, journalists are also getting real-time feedback on their stories
the reaction they get on social media affects the way they make editorial judgements
news stories
differs from other story telling
where do journalists get information about stories
start with press release
Hong Kong University sent press release to newspapers
invited reporters
two local papers published news story based on press release
stories were essentially identical to the press release
different was that the news stories included a negative aspect, that the school's ranking had dropped
the rest of the articles was a reworked version of what the university wanted the press to publish
how should we read these types of news articles?
is rewriting a press release a work of journalism?
the purpose of a press release
promote a product
project a positive image
if we could identify where journalists get their information, we would be better off
we know why it's there
we have a better idea what other information could be missing
check government press releases
check in the following days for stories which use them
see how much text and pictures are taken as is
example: a fake press release distributed through PRWeb which reported that Google bought a WIFI company for $400 million
activity: find a news report that is based on a press release