Applying Lessons on Interactive Media Production

Published on
March 22, 2010

I recently produced a web-only interactive story about a San Francisco-based artist's quest for a kidney donor for KQED Public Radio's Health Dialogues. I found that many of the tips that I received from Craig Rosa, a speaker at a recent USC California Health Journalism Fellowship seminar and an interactive producer for KQED Public Radio's QUEST, were helpful in both producing the piece and getting other people to then put it up on their own website and link back to us.

Center for Health Journalism Digital community manager Angilee Shaw wrote a blog post highlighting most of the seminar on interactive journalisms, including ways to integrate audio with print and video to create multimedia packages, and how to use simple and relatively inexpensive programs like Soundslides to produce audio slide shows or free tools like Google maps to add more context to your story. Another important tip was to plan ahead and think about what kind of multimedia package you want to make, and not think of the web as a place you put the 'left-overs' of a story.

The most important take-away I got from Rosa's presentation is that, when possible, give away your content...that doesn't mean work for free, but once something is produced and up on your news organization's website, make it available for other people in your community. In the case of the audio slideshow of Zaballa's kidney donation that I just produced, that meant finding a way to make it embeddable so that other people could put it up on their own websites or blogs (and we did! Soundslides teaches you how to embed slide show online). For our slide show, Health Dialogues social media web producer Nick Vidinsky changed up the HTML a bit so that it would include a link back to our website,