Weekly Scroll, Friday November 17


News, tips and advice from the Quill and Scroll International Honor Society.
Compiled and written by Marni Wax.

The Lede:

Praying for a change.

Various liberals and conservatives believe in a personal God, the existence of an afterlife, and the power of what it means to practice prayer. This must be said in the aftermath of mass killings and when a news anchor says, “Our thoughts and prayers go out to you,” it feels fitting and proper. This is a terrible expectation to live by. Click the link to see the ins and outs why.

Cell phones: the extension of our limbs.

It’s been a long time since mobile phones have made their first appearances, but educators still don’t know how to navigate a student body that uses them. Should they be allowed in elementary schools? Nowadays, cell phones are inescapable for society, especially within the teenage generation.

How to deal with heartache.

Many modern journalists have a wealth of knowledge of difficult topics, such as sexual harassment stories. These writers had no idea that it would pile up to such heartache for the victims, and themselves. To be a woman is to know a lot of upsetting stories, and I’m sure you ladies reading this can relate. But hearing and knowing how to deal with the issues can be two different tasks. Barely any have ever been told how to do it right, but let’s all attempt to learn how.

It’s an honor:

Come to the Quill and Scroll booth

It’s not a big booth, but it’s in Big D, at the JEA/NSPA national high school journalism. If you haven’t stopped by to chat up Executive Director Jeff Browne, then stop by Friday to do so. You might also get a chance to meet Quill and Scroll board members Jessica Young, Anthony Whitten and Patrick Johnson.

Student Advisory Board

Quill and Scroll has always striven to be more than just a place where you can get graduation cords and pins. Those are great, but we also want to promote the best in high school journalism. We do that through critiques and contests, and individual chapters do it with their community service activities.

Quill and Scroll would now like to expand its role as an activist organization promoting truth and journalistic ethics by creating a Student Advisory Board that will plan and execute international activities that draw attention to key issues facing students and society as a whole. The Board will also provide valuable counsel regarding Quill and Scroll’s programs and services.

If you’re a sophomore or junior this year, and you have been inducted into Quill and Scroll (or will be this year), you can be a part of the Quill and Scroll Advisory Board, which will have its first meeting at the San Francisco JEA/NSPA convention in April 2018.

Interested Quill and Scroll members should contact Executive Director Jeff Browne at 319-335-3321 or [email protected] by Dec. 22, 2017 in order to be considered for a spot on the Student Advisory Board.

What’s it like to be a part of something bigger than yourself?

Go to our Facebook page to learn how to share your testimony about what it means to be a member of Quill and Scroll. Or you can go to the Quill and Scroll website to give a more detailed story about your connection to Q&S.


Does anyone have any footage of their induction ceremonies! We would love to feature your students in a video! Contact us at [email protected] for more information.

What’s Viral:

So who’s really instigating the #fake news?

Secretary of Justice Jefferson Sessions frequently denied that he lied in October that he knew of nobody in the Trump campaign who had contacts with Russians, especially while presidential campaign was happening (of course). However, the court records from Sessions testifying shows that he led a meeting in March 2016 and discussed his Russian ties. Click here to sum up the rest.

When the expectations are too high. Can you relate?

Teenager Claire Buckley has a routine everyday, that started at the crack of dawn. Each morning, she would get ready with the same actions and clothing, and leave her suburban home to catch a 6 a.m. bus, that took her to a high school in the city (yes…that is a far commute for those not from Chicago). “These days we’re asking of our teens what very few adults are required to do,” said Claire’s mother, Melissa Buckley. Click here to see how it contributes to the anxiety of teens today. Can you imagine living a life of having a full time job and more right now guys?

See how social media proves successful audience.

It is extremely important to see how different posts are doing with your audience and what the engagement is with the websites and content of a publication…especially on social media.  Google Analytics are great and for sure get your pages to the next step, but ACTUAL social media analytics give that extra insight as to what you can do even better. Want to be the best you can be? To do this it is very simple.

Just a Thought:

Decades go digital.

Over the past decade, digital tools and mobile platforms have pioneered innovation for the journalism industry. Yet, without incredibly stellar content, articles are not worth the effort to read, click on, or even scroll through. Every story that is produced starts with an idea. So let’s brainstorm. To help get you started, below is a quick-hit, unending, hopefully indispensable, fun, fun, fun digital story ideas fountain.

Harvey Weinstein has anything but an “Entourage”

In October, Harvey Weinstein, one of the most defining figures of the modern movie business, was accused of rape and sexual harassment. Many turned to “Entourage” and immediately thought about what it meant to the show. The long-running HBO couldn’t vary more from the high-end films Weinstein produces, which were precision-engineered to win Oscars.

Tips galore, and a whole lot more.

Some of the best tips and techniques come out of the annual meetings by our colleagues in Scandinavia, and this year is no different. More than 600 participants attended the SKUP conference in Tønsberg, Norway, click here to see what they had to say. In this extensive tipsheet, the two veteran journalists offer practical tips that reporters in even the smallest newsrooms can use to good effect, focused on finding great characters and cases to bring your story to life.

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