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March 4, 2009

I have been on the hunt for a lighter story recently, having read my previous ones, and noticed that they are pretty hard news based. I found out that Neil Young is releasing an ENTIRE concept album based around his campaigning for electric cars.

I wrote a story, based on the information i could find in various blogs. Unlike some of the blogs, including Pitchfork, I tried to base my article on the fact that it promotes electric cars, rather than the fact that it is not one of his best pieces of work.

I hope I stuck to my main objectives:

  • To highlight the main angle first, that the new album was based on electric cars
  • To secondly mention Young’s campaigning in partnership with automobile company Lincvolt
  • To let the reader make their own opinion on the music by leaving a link at the bottom

I left my own opinion of the music to the comments section, because I thought it had no place in the article, and that a comment is more likely to spark a better debate.


The next stage- finding specialist reactions

February 24, 2009

Board Reader had a lot of specialist comments and reactions to LDV vans asking for Governmental help. It appears that there is a divided opinion. Some are saying that Gordon Brown should help them out after their efforts to make 200 jobs and work to find environmental alternatives. Others are saying that the company does not deserve it.

The story is really starting to formulate in my head after reading these comments. I think I am going to focus on the fact that LDV want to get to the forefront of electric vans in europe, and follow up with the asking for government aid and the management buyout.

I will leave the reactions out of my story mainly, allowing the website’s comment feature to show the specialist reactions, which will also encourage conversation in the environmental community hopefully.

Next step: Actually writing the story!

LDV Vans- Europe’s first green van company?

February 24, 2009

Having come across this story in the Birmingham Mail, I searched on technorati for any blog reactions to Birmingham company LDV Vans’ Management Buyout and decision to go green.

Not A Sheep reported that The BBC has not uniformly reported the news across all of its mediums, deciding to talk about the hope of turning it into the first big producer of electric vans in the UK only on its website. 

The Tangled Web focused more on the economy side of the story, condemning the “tens of millions” of pounds only creating 200 jobs.

The Birmingham Mail article states that the chairman of Gaz, the Russian owners of the company, is going to lead the buyout and turn LDV into a “symbol of the low-carbon, green manufacturing future that the Government says it wants Britain to lead.”

As stated in The Tangled web, this could be analysed as a way to get the Govornment on their side to gain funds. If LDV can prove that they can start the electric van revolution, then it could be seen as worthwhile to put tax payers money into the project.

I’m about to start writing my story for this to go up on BirminghamRecycled, but I first of all need to consider the angle. Should I focus on the hope that they gain Government funds? Or should I focus more on the fact that they want to be green? Economy or Environment?

Writing My first story for the new website.

February 20, 2009

Using Reuters and search engines I found a story on the AA’s website about rising fuel prices being higher than the general inflation in Britain. Here’s the story I wrote.

“UK petrol prices rise at a sharper rate than inflation.

February petrol prices rose more sharply than the current inflation rate in Britain, The Automobile Association has announced this week. A rise of nearly 5% has been confirmed, in comparison to the current UK inflation rate of 3%.

Diesel prices are rising more moderately, with the petrol-diesel price difference dropping to 10 pence. This has improved the return for the cost of a litre of diesel in the UK, making it even more fuel efficient.

Unleaded prices have risen by 4.3ppl (pence per litre) from 86.6ppl to 90.9ppl. Diesel prices have risen by 2.1ppl, from 98.7ppl to 100.8ppl. The price difference between unleaded and diesel has fallen from 12.1ppl to 9.9ppl.

The West Midlands unleaded price records were the exact average for the UK, at 90.9ppl. The county recorded a lower than average price for diesel, at 100.6ppl, with the country wide average being 100.8ppl.

There has also been a rise of prices overseas, with the UK having the tenth highest unleaded price and the second highest diesel price in Europe.”

I recommend checking Reuters for stories and then trying to find the original sources for the stories, because those sources often have other relevant stories worthy of report.

Starting the search process for Eco News.

February 17, 2009

By using Twellow, a twitter search engine, I discovered prominent twitter profiles in the Energy world to keep me up to pace with my role in the launch of next week eco website. I have found Twitter very helpful in keeping me updated with news in a nutshell on the subject of Energy, Fuel and Transport. It has allowed me to skim the news, due to the 140 character limit and then, if I deem it necessary, click on the links provided in the tweets to read on in more detail.

Coupled with adding bookmarks of the more important articles found to my Delicious account, and then linking my Delicious bookmarks to this blog, I have hopefully completed a full circle of the three mediums, twitter, Delicious and this Blog, so that they are all interlinked. This will hopefully allow myself and my colleagues to remain in touch with Enerrgy News.

Facebook claim ownership of your content … “Forever”

February 16, 2009


Social Networking website Facebook have changed their terms of service to allow them to use any content users upload in any way they want, even if the user deletes the content, or even their whole account. Bad news for those with controversial content coming back to haunt them. Read the full post in the link below.

The Consumerist- Facebook’s New Terms Of Service: “We Can Do Anything We Want With Your Content. Forever.”

Welcome to Jo Chapman’s blog- Journalism

February 16, 2009


Journalism- a profession traditionally based on contacts. Who you know and how to get hold of them plays such a large role.  So what do you do nowadays? Pick up the phone? Go door knocking? Perhaps. The new alternative is social networking. Log into your twitter, your facebook, your Google Reader and the rest and not only can you find out news that interests you, but also post news that you think will interest others. In a heartbeat (unless you are still living in the dial up stone age!)

In light of the recent boom of Journalism’s connection with social networking, here are some useful links on how to impr0ve your journalistic skills using these modern utilities…

Twitter in Plain English

Follow exactly who you want using hashtags

10 Journalists you should follow on Twitter

How does StumbleUpon help bloggers?