Former Lantern EIC in newsroom tomorrow!!

Joseph D. Keefer, Ph.D, editor-in-chief of the Lantern in 1967, will be on campus on Friday.  He will be in the newsroom around 1:30 p.m. If you can stop by to introduce yourself, that would be great. As you can see below, he has literally done it all since leaving the newsroom about 40 years ago:

Currently, I am teaching half time at North Carolina Central University and I am spending the other half of my workweek doing editing, consulting and book-writing.

In the journalism portion of my career, I was a copy editor for The Columbus Dispatch and The Des Moines Register; a reporter and editor for UPI in Birmingham, Atlanta, New York, Paris and London; and a reporter and editor for McGraw-Hill Business Publications in Washington.

In my public relations and public policy phase, I was press assistant and energy policy assistant to a U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee chairman and I was director of government relations and public affairs for an energy-related trade association based in Washington.

In academe, I have been an associate professor at Penn State, an associate professor at Zayed University in Dubai and Abu Dhabi and a visiting professor at several universities.

I have written three books aimed at helping people become better writers.  One is titled “Zippy Writing: The Pocket Guide for Helping You to Write Correctly, Clearly and Concisely,” which was published this month.  I will give you a copy of that book when I see you.

Also, you might be interested in a five-page classroom handout that I have prepared.  The handout is titled “Mastering AP Style: A Guide to Major Provisions of The Associated Press Stylebook.”


Helpful links/contacts for OSU

Summer Internship info 4 Dispatch and NY Times!

The Dispatch will interview up to 12 OSU students for its internship program. Lemme know if you are interested.

Below is info on the NY Times internship. Both are PAID!!!

Summer Internship Program 2011
The New York Times offers 10-week summer internships to college seniors and graduate students who have decided on careers in journalism.
The Times began the program in 1984. In its first 17 years, it was aimed at members of minority groups who, because of race or ethnicity, had been historically excluded from opportunities in America’s newspaper industry. While the internships are now open to all applicants, the program remains as an integral part of The Times’s commitment to recruit and hire as diverse and as highly qualified a staff as possible.
The Times offers a summer of demanding work and high journalistic standards in reporting and in visual journalism, and it offers copy-editing internships with placement by the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund, and an online producing internship at
The reporting interns in New York are called the James Reston Reporting Fellows and the reporting internship in Washington, D.C., is named the David Rosenbaum Reporting Fellow.
The visual journalism program, covering graphics, art design, page design and photography, is called the Thomas Morgan Internship. The copy editing internship program is coordinated through the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund Copy Editing program.
The digital internship is at the headquarters building working with producers and editors at
James Reston Reporting Fellowships
David E. Rosenbaum Reporting Internship in Washington, D.C.
Thomas Morgan Internships in Visual Journalism
Dow Jones Newspaper Fund Editing Internship
Salary for all four internships: About $900 a week. Housing is available on the New York University campus for about $850 monthly.
James Reston — called Scotty by virtually everyone who knew him – spent 50 years at The Times, as a columnist, Washington correspondent and, ultimately, executive editor. Among the most influential journalist of his generation, he won two Pulitzer Prizes. He was also a talent scout of prodigious capacity, hiring and training some of The Times’s best-known journalists. He died in 1995 at the age of 86.
Interns are assigned to various news departments, typically, metro, education, business and sports. They get reporting assignments and bylines on their stories. The internship includes four days in Washington, D.C., on a behind-the-scenes tour of the capital and the Washington bureau.
Four college students are selected as James Reston Reporting Fellows. We consider only seniors or graduate students who have had at least one previous summer internship on a daily newspaper.
The most competitive candidates have usually had two or three previous internships, with a variety of clips showing breaking news, analysis and excellence in feature writing.
The first week of the fellowship involves orientation to New York City and the newsroom.
Beginning with the second week, the Reston Fellows start work in a section that reflects their skills and area of interest — business, sports, science or City Weekly, for example — to report and write stories under the guidance of an editor or senior reporter serving as mentor. Fellows are eligible for bylines.
Some stories are assigned, but fellows are encouraged to come up with their own ideas. They also participate in workshops with ranking editors, foreign correspondents and other reporters. The goal of the program is to provide an opportunity for the fellows to stretch their journalistic skills with the help of some of the best reporters and editors in the country.
At the end of the 10-week program, the Reston Fellows will spend four days getting a behind-the-scenes look at the people and institutions that make up official Washington. The visit will be hosted by the Reston family and editors and reporters in the Washington bureau.
Applicants for the reporting fellowships should send a cover letter, resume and eight to ten newswriting samples from daily newspapers and/or other supporting materials.
Note: No applications postmarked after the deadline will be accepted.
All application material should be sent to:
Dana Canedy, Senior Editor
The New York Times
620 Eighth Ave., New York, NY 10018
Questions should be directed to
No telephone calls, please.

Graduate TA Nick Geidner’s schedule

12-5 Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
1-6 Tuesday

How to file stories for credit

It is very simple. When you turn in a story to your editors, e-mail a copy to: Subject line should be the section and the number of the story for you. For example, if you write for Sports and it is your first story of the quarter, the subject line should be: Sports 1.
Include the contact sheet at the end of the story so it all comes in one Word document. I do NOT want the edited copies or what runs in the paper. I want the version that you turned in because you felt it was ready for the paper at that time.

Class next Thursday, Sept. 30!! Very Important

Class on Thursday will be held in Pomerene Hall 306. Attendance is mandatory and you must ask questions!!! Here are the details:

This panel discussion will address how journalists cover crime and criminal
justice, with emphasis on how journalists interact with police sources in and
around Ohio State University. The legal and ethical issues of access to records
and places affecting crime coverage, with a focus on henvironments, also will be discussed.

Collin Binkley, Editor, The Lantern
Paul Denton, Chief of Police, Ohio State University
Mark Goodman, Professor of Journalism, Kent State
University; former Executive Director, Student Press Law Center
Randy Ludlow, Senior Reporter, Columbus Dispatch
Rich Weiner, Sergeant, Public Information Unit,
City of Columbus – Division of Police
Dan Caterinicchia, Lantern Adviser

Common problems for 423-ers to avoid

Misspelled names!! Quadruple check all spellings. Is it John or Jon? Last name hyphenated? Last name have a capital letter? Vanpelt? VanPelt? Van Pelt?

Also, if you re-organize your story before turning it in make sure that your first reference to sources is still complete. We never want “Tressel said” in graf 2, and then “Coach Jim Tressel” in graf 4.

Do the math!! Quadruple check all facts and figures from all your sources. Does the math add up? Do the percentages = 100? Is it the most current data? For example, a former federal banking official told a Lantern editor that about 200 banks had closed in the last year. Well, it was actually more than 250, so we double-checked and made the story more accurate!!

Don’t bury the lede!! First, identify the most newsworthy and interesting details/facts, then prioritize within them. Remember the 5 W’s and H, then decide which are the most important and construct your lede sentence/story accordingly.

Bad: On Thursday during a Rose Garden press conference, President Barack Obama said he will resign due to a heart condition. (The important stuff is there but at end of sentence, should be first thing reader reads)

Talk to more people!!! All of your stories must have at least 3 people. Well, that is a MINIMUM! Talk to as many folks as you can. You never know what the next person will say and if that will help you get a better story on that day…or give you an idea for another story that is even better than the original. And not all sources must be OSU people, seek “outside experts” from other schools, companies, trade groups, etc.

DO NOT RELY ON E-MAIL!! In-person interviews should ALWAYS be your first option. Then phone. E-mail is last! E-mail allows your sources to perfectly craft responses, avoid follow-up questions and avoid having to look you in the eye when they answer your questions. That is too much of an advantage for them in most cases….and your stories will suffer…and our audience suffers.