Weekly Scroll for Friday, December 1

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The Weekly Scroll for Friday, Dec. 1
News, tips and advice from the Quill and Scroll International Honor Society.
Compiled and written by Marni Wax.

The Lede:

Beware the Trojan Horse

Going undercover can be a legitimate journalistic exercise. But when the tactic is used by a purely partisan organization, the results should be looked at with a pillar of salt. Project Veritas, a right-wing organization, is infamous for its stings, one of which landed PV founder James O’Keefe in jail.

Other PV work includes publishing heavily edited video that has inaccurately portrayed a number of victims, including NPR, the Hillary Clinton campaign and ACORN. It is sufficient to say that Project Veritas, when held up to professional journalism standards of going undercover, clearly doesn’t qualify as a journalistic enterprise. It’s merely a political operation that skirts and sometimes crosses legal boundaries.

This past week, PV sent a woman to the Washington Post to get the paper to publish her fabrication that Alabama judge and U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore impregnated her and paid for her abortion. The Post — a legitimate news organization — did what legitimate journalists do: they checked out her story, beginning with a simple Google search. They uncovered her lie, then confronted her with it. Now they’ve uncovered her months-long crusade to deceive the Post.

Of course, anyone who knows the Student Press Law Center knows that a lot of good journalists and good people work there. So it’s no surprise that an SPLC staff writer, Emily Goodell, also had a run-in with Project Veritas’ Jaime Phillips.

The lesson? Beware of political operatives bearing gifts. (Ask your teacher about the allusion.)

Who is Prince Harry’s bride to be?

Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have a May wedding at Windsor Castle’s St. George’s Chapel, royal officials announced Tuesday. The wedding will be similar to Prince William and Kate Middleton’s! Click that link to learn all the extravagant details. And this is a chance to help your readers/viewers/listeners understand the dynamics of British peerage and how Americans have sneaked their way into the system on occasion.

But can he make it happen and trump the expectations?

President Trump met with Senate republicans this crucial week in his presidency. It determines if his tax plan will allow him to end his first year with a major legislative achievement (shocker). “It’s not going to be easy,” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch said Monday. Here are the eight GOP senators that are most likely to decide the tax bill’s fate.

It’s an honor:

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! 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 does being a Quill and Scroll member mean to you?

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.

Indiana Q&S school reports on difficult topic

The students at Lake Central High School (a Quill and Scroll charter school) in St. John, Indiana reported this week on the arrest of a teacher on charges of possessing drugs and drug paraphernalia. While you may not always be able to break stories like this, it’s always within the realm of possibility that you cover and get reaction to such shocking news. Just keep in mind the eight Quill and Scroll lights as you report, particularly Truth, Integrity, Judgment and Leadership.


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:

It takes a village.

The Journalism Education Association has joined The Partnership for 21st Century Learning. This is “a coalition of education, business and government leaders whose collaborative focus is to embrace 21st century education as a foundation for lifelong learning.” As an active member of the organization, JEA will team with partners in order to bring changes in state, local and national policy to make sure that students are prepared for success in school, their careers and live a holistic life. Read more from the Executive Director Kelly Glasscock.

When you ignore something, it won’t always go away.

In current times, we are under continuous pressure from society to ignore the white supremacists among us, even with the overwhelming amounts of these individuals that we see. Through numerous times of trial and error, it has been seen that documenting their presence and their activities is down to a science or a constant balancing act. Click here to learn how to cover Nazis in current times.

Just a Thought:

Technology trends.

Search engines for audio, investigating algorithms, and offline news consumption are some of the trends newsrooms should watch in the coming year. For 2018, the Future Today Institute has produced its first Tech Trends reports. Check out what the report shows for the coming up year.

Want to be a part of a cultural revolution?

Gain insights into the cultural revolutions set to soon become widespread. In 2018, a number of culture breakthroughs and trends will become available to the public.

Digital drives the business.

There hasn’t been a year with as much change as we have witnessed in 2017. This “groundswell of disruption” with continue into the year ahead as the lines between culture and commerce, will never stop disappearing. Click on the link to explore the ranges from digital transformation to purpose driven business in current times.

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