Ivory tower dispatch: A tale of two websites

Across a number of classes this week, two websites have stood out.

To start the week I had this from China Daily.com

Worst headline of the week!

Shoddy! Which thesaurus did they drag that one up from!

This was paydirt for me as I talked to the class (a group of chinese students) about writing headlines, seo. Something that “Shoddy railway project closed down” fails at in every measure.

Worse still the story is really good:

The 74.1-kilometer railway project [Jingyu-Songjianghe Railway project in Changchun], with a total investment of 2.3 billion yuan ($360 million), was recently found to have illegally contracted a fake company and a couple of laymen who barely know anything of building bridges.

Two blokes stroll up and blag $360 million! Come on!

The week ended with a lot of talk about video and a chance for me to roll out my favourite example of the use of online video

Visceral video at its best

It’s an old story but for me it perfectly illustrates the way that video can enhance a story.  This is clip video at its finest – the text tells the story and the video shows you the visceral experience. It enhances the story and works with the text in a combination of media that’s unique to the web.

When I play this in a class I know that one minute in I will get a reaction, a big ooooh that underlines what video is great at. Watch and see what I mean.

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