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#INMA17 News Experience



How 5 fusion journalists engaged
41.1M people
over 7 days

Yes, there are only four here. The fifth is out shooting media.(Tom Corbett)
A good story

Designing a news experience is much easier when doing it around something already being ginned up as a major experience. Like the 2017 World Congress of the International News Media Association, with it’s grand stage presentations and gala awards night.

Then all one needs to produce is the news. And of course the context. And the interface. And archives.

And the online community. And social interactivity.

And the whole trans­la­tion of an es­ca­la­ting physical event to an ac­cum­u­la­ting digital one. Coding emotion. Ras­ter­izing dra­ma. Rendering discovery…

Okay, maybe it isn’t all that much easier than if the event isn’t already an experience worthy of the term.

But it was a really great story, which is always the essential element to a successful Newsplexer Project, which this was.

INMA Executive Director and CEO Earl J. Wilkinson called it simply “PhD level” coverage.

 

By the numbers

This is the seventh consecutive year that INMA has commissioned The Newsplexer Projects in one form or another to design and produce a massive-media news experience around its annual World Congress encompassing articles, social and video.

Following several months of prep work to set up the video and online styles and workflows, our team of five professional fusion journalist descended on the New York Times Center and its environs for the week of May 17-24 to work on site in real time.

Fusion journalists combine the ethics, mission, production values and professionalism of quality editorial work with an atypical range of expertise in making that work more visual, more tangible, more accessible to a contemporary public. They are entrepreneurial journalists primed to work in the start-ups, spinoffs, NGOs, non-profits, social networks, digital divisions and corporate activities that are becoming society’s new mainstream media. They don’t just tell news stories. They produce the environments in which people engage with those stories across multiple technologies and platforms.

The team for our #INMA17 project comprised:

  • Engagement producer Murphy Burke of Des Moines, Iowa
  • Editorial technologist Nicole Coomer of Bowling Green, Kentucky
  • Experience designer and narrativist Brie Logsdon of Philadelphia
  • Multiplatform media composer Hannah Murphy of Chicago
  • News experience producer and Newsplexer Projects founder Kerry J. Northrup of Camden, South Carolina

By the time they were done and flying home, they had published 21 major articles, assembled and embedded 21 digital archives of tweets and other social media reaction, uploaded 6 produced summary videos, shot 2 hours of raw speaker interviews, posted more than 850 tweets and more than 450 retweets, engaged an online audience of 7.4 million around this year’s Congress coverage, and achieved a total reach  of 41.1 million people with #INMA17-tagged content.

Most articles were ready within 30-60 minutes of the end of the stage events and produced videos were up by 5 a.m. the next morning.

And all of this activity was integrated so as to accomplish our goal of creating an actual mobile information experience around the overall story that was the 2017 INMA World Congress. It’s a story about 400+ of the world’s leaders in the news business coming together to try to figure out what tomorrow is going to look like for our industry.

 

Lessons learned

“Working with The Newsplexer Projects means working with a small team of multi-talented media professionals that newsrooms claim to have and j-schools claim to train you for,” Logsdon said in explaining the accomplishment.

“I’ve found that the major difference lies in each individual’s buy-in: We trust that others in the team can step in to cover for us while we chase a piece of a story that surprised us, and we know we would do the same for them. It makes us dynamic and flexible, bending with each opportunity that comes our way.”

 

Demoing the future of journalism

#INMA17 is just the latest such international media gathering turned news experience by The Newsplexer Projects or its earlier iteration, Western iMedia based at Western Kentucky University.

It’s a natural fit for us. While industry leaders are up front talking about the future of journalism, our teams are in the back of the room doing it.

Prior massive-media coverage projects of this sort include:

  • World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) 2009 World Newspaper Congress and World Editors Forum in Hyderabad, India video link
  • INMA 2011 World Congress in New York City
  • Global Editors Network 2011 NEWS! World Summit in Hong Kong video link
  • INMA 2012 World Congress in Los Angeles
  • GEN 2012 NEWS! World Summit in Paris video link
  • INMA 2013 World Congress in New York City
  • INMA 2014 World Congress in San Francisco
  • WAN-IFRA 2014 World Newspaper Congress and World Editors Forum in Turino, Italy
  • INMA 2015 World Congress in New York City link
  • INMA 2016 World Congress in London link