Online News Bureau Syllabus
Overview Standards Routine Grading Readings
Readings, Dress Code, Telephones, Etc.

Required Reading: Please purchase or download "Journalism 2.0: How to Survive and Thrive," by Mark Briggs." (J-Lab, located just off campus, may have copies available.) I will periodically be calling your attention to chapters in the book.

You should also be reading the Washington Post or Washington Times each day, along with Baltimore's Sun --particularly focusing on Maryland politics, schools, development, business and technology.

Strongly Recommended: "Macromedia Dreamweaver 8," by Daniel Short and Garo Green, published by Peachpit Press. You can order it from online bookstores such as

Because the field is changing so fast, I also recommend that you periodically read a few sites about the business of online journalism: Vincent Flanders' Web Pages That Suck (learn good Web design by looking at bad design!) is both amusing and useful; Online Journalism Review, American Journalism Review, Columbia Journalism Review and Editor & Publisher all carry columns and stories about new media.  

Dress: Dress as you would for a paying job as a reporter in an online newsroom. No shorts, jeans, T-shirts or tennis shoes, please. Dress pants and shirts and blazers or nice sweaters are recommended, in case you are called on to go out for an interview. Skirts or dresses are also great, but not necessary unless you are trying to get into a legislative or congressional hearing room or floor session. Exceptions to the code can be made with prior permission of your instructor. (For instance, if you're going out to interview homeless people, I'll likely ask you to dress casually.)

Telephones: We have no office secretary or receptionist, so please share in answering incoming calls and in taking messages for each other. Be sure when taking a message to get the caller's name, phone number, message, day and time of call. When answering all phone calls, please say your full name and "Maryland Newsline." It makes you sound professional. 

Be sure to periodically check for voice mail messages, by dialing 301-405-5100. You'll also have to type in the last five digits of our phone line (42694) and our five-digit password (I'll give it to you the first day) to retrieve calls on the office phones. 

Note that personal long-distance calls cannot be made on our lines. We get monthly printouts of calls and enforce this rule.

Our main newsroom number is: 301-314-2694. My number is the bureau is 301-405-2696.

Our fax number is: 301-314-2566.

The Washington bureau number is: 202-628-1677. Its director is Adrianne Flynn.

The Annapolis bureau number is: 301-858-5431. Its director is Rafael Lorente.

The broadcast bureau co-irectors are Cassandra Clayton and Kevin Swift. Their newsroom phone is 301-405-2405. We'll also sometimes talk to Al Perry, who works at UMTV and digitizes the Newsline show.

Who We Are: If someone asks who we are, you can tell them something along these lines: Maryland Newsline is a student-staffed online newsmagazine run by the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism and edited by a teacher with many years of experience as a professional journalist. We cover state and federal politics, school and health issues, business and technology, and courts and criminal justice. We package content from Capital News Service--our print and TV sister bureaus in Annapolis, Washington and College Park--and also produce our own work, focusing on Maryland issues. Print stories from CNS are fed to subscriber papers in Maryland, Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia--including Baltimore's Sun, The Washington Post and The Washington Times. Television stories for Maryland Newsline can be seen on UMTV, which also airs on Prince George’s and Montgomery County cable.

A Final Note: Any students with disabilities requiring special accommodations should talk to me privately at the start of the semester.

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Copyright 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 Chris Harvey. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.