Adding climate to the journalistic environment

I am one of the first cohort of journalists in the Oxford Climate Journalism Network, run by Oxford University’s Reuters Institute. This involves taking part in a series of online seminars and discussions with journalists from around the world.

Our first seminar was by the Reuters Institute’s Wolfgang Blau, former chief operating officer of Condé Nast and co-founder of the network. (He has since delivered a public lecture covering the same ground, which you can read here.) Blau pointed out how badly climate change fits with journalistic (and perhaps human attention) values: it’s not new, it’s not local, it’s not simple, it’s not usually personal, it’s a long-term process rather than a specific event and it’s hard to get an exclusive out of it. Continue reading “Adding climate to the journalistic environment”

Face-to-face freelance NUJ training is back

After two years online, my courses on working as a freelance journalist will return to the National Union of Journalists’ London headquarters this spring. It will be great to be back in the training room.

First steps in freelancing: Friday 29 April, NUJ members £60, student members £50 and non-members £110. Booking and more information here.

Winning and negotiating freelance work: Friday 13 May, NUJ members £70, student members £60 and non-members £130. Booking and more information here.

I will deliver online versions of these courses over the summer, followed by further face-to-face sessions in the autumn. The last two years of online-only training saw people joining sessions from across the UK and Ireland, as well as countries including Denmark, France and Spain. The wider access that online courses allow looks worth retaining, so the plan is to do some of both.

Companies are key in reaching net zero emissions

It’s common to look at which countries produce the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, but it can be more interesting to look at why rather than where. This chart by Our World in Data using World Resources Institute data shows how much comes from corporate activities, with nearly a quarter from industrial energy use alone. Continue reading “Companies are key in reaching net zero emissions”

Join my NUJ freelancing courses in October

Both of my one-day National Union of Journalists courses designed to help freelance journalists improve their working lives are running in October.

First steps in freelancing is designed for those starting out as freelance journalists, photographers and broadcasters and covers the first things you need to know about your first commission (and getting paid for it), planning, tax, copyright, pitching and negotiating.
Online, Friday 15 October. NUJ members £40, student members £30 and non-members £110.
You can find out more and book here.

Winning and negotiating freelance work goes deeper into these two areas with role-playing exercises designed to build your confidence in asking for work and discussing terms – those attending should be prepared to take part in workshop-style exercises and to talk about money.
Online, Friday 29 October. NUJ members £50, student members £40 and non-members £130.
Further information and booking here.

Time to drop digital booking barriers for visitors

I have been visiting museums and galleries over the summer, partly to write a Geek’s Guide for the Register on Oxford University’s history of medical science leading to its ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine, partly for the joy of it. But some visits are marred by unnecessary digital barriers put up during the pandemic that should now be scrapped.

One museum (not in Oxford) required separate timed online tickets to enter and for each special exhibition, which meant guessing how long you would spend in one exhibition to meet the 30-minute time-slot for the next one. One gallery was asking visitors at its door to book a free online ticket before entering, although it looks like it has since changed its policy. Continue reading “Time to drop digital booking barriers for visitors”