MASTERCLASSES

Friday, 25 February 2011

New ways of reporting: introducing the latest MMJ masterclass

We've concentrated a good deal in MMJ Masterclasses on how to reach out to new audiences with the effective use of a wide range of social media.
Why did we put such an emphasis on that?
[Video and audio may not render on some platforms.]
The goal was always to find new readers who won’t get to know of you through conventional, old-media means but who, once they do discover you, will appreciate – and maybe even pay for - what you are doing back on your branded websites.
Once they are on those branded websites, we want to really impress them – and this masterclass is about how to impress those visitors and convert them into regular users. You'll find it in full here: http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/node/1484
We look at how to make that website as effective as it can be at turning casual visitors into committed and regular consumers of our content.
So here are the things I’m going to focus on…
They are all, really, attempts to answer the same question: how best do we create, collate, curate and structure rich content for the web?
I’ve got three answers, or possible answers, to that question. They are: something called the Digital Media Pyramid, something else called topic pages and, finally a new take on the much-derided blog called beat blogging.
I’ve been talking with Ben Davis, lecturer in the Department of Journalism and Mass Media at Rutgers university in New Jersey.
Ben has thought as deeply, and written as perceptively, as anyone about the inadequacy of the inverted pyramid inherited from traditional media.
The Digital Media Pyramid
He’s come up with what he calls the Digital Media Pyramid, an approach that takes the old who, what, when etc, and turns it on its head – literally, as he has developed an upright rather than inverted pyramid.
He’s tried to invent something that fits the modern online journalism world, where much of our reporting involves gathering material from other sources, and where we must present stills, audio, video and social media alongside text.
We’ll be taking an in-depth look at the Digital Media Pyramid, and trying it out.
The Topic Page
I also want to look at long-form journalism through topic pages.
It was always the received wisdom that we couldn’t do long on the web.
That view is changing, with significant efforts to invent a long form – topic pages - that will work online.
A form which, rather than turning our new audiences off, will actually give them what they want – perhaps what they never knew they wanted until they came upon it: depth, breadth, authority, but in a way that presents weighty issues, dense analysis, in a way that works online.
Jeff Jarvis, journalism prof at CUNY in New York, sees the article as no longer being the main building block of journalism. He says its place has been taken by the topic page: “The topic page that covers a story as an ongoing process rather than as a finished product.”
The topic page being a place where, rather than just the latest shallow dip into a big story, you get that story in all its depth and complexity – the deep end not the shallow end of traditional online news content.
The Beat Blog
Finally, there is the re-imagining of the blog - long derided, perfectly fairly, as a lame version of the newspaper column.
The BBC’s Robert Peston (among others) has an approach to blogging, the Beat Blog, that puts it at the heart of everything he does.
Dazzling examples of layer reporting
Then there is what Alan Rusbridger, editor of The Guardian, has been saying about how you can layer reporting between the different platforms at our disposal.
He says: “Journalists have never before been able to tell stories so effectively, bouncing off each other, linking to each other (as the most generous and open-minded do), linking out, citing sources, allowing response – harnessing the best qualities of text, print, data, sound and visual media.”
He’s come up with a list of journalists who are pioneers in this field, and we take a close look at what they are doing to see what we can learn from them.
Further reading
If you’ve been a subscriber to Multimedia Journalism: A Practical Guide over the 12 months since its launch you might have seen a series of linked masterclasses which went through the logic of finding new audiences, and the techniques to employ when attempting that.
If you want to check out the previous posts in this area they are:
How to master Facebook and Twitter http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/node/441
Search (and everything else) is going social http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/node/524
And what comes next…
This masterclass is also linked thematically with the three that follow it:
Masterclass 23: Location-based content for local journalism
Masterclass 24: Curating user-generated content
Masterclass 25: Real-time reporting. How social media can be used to cover breaking stories

Projects

I'd like to invite you to try the new reporting techniques outlined in this masterclass for yourself.
As you work your way through the modules you'll find enough information on the Digital Media Pyramid, on topic pages and beat blogs to introduce them into your reporting.
There are projects at the end of each module with suggestions for what you might do.
Let me know how you get on; use the contact buttons or the comment facilities at any of the MMJ platforms listed here

Next: The Digital Media Pyramid

Monday, 21 February 2011

How to write your own QR code and reach your mobile audience


QR - for Quick Response - codes are springing up all over the place, particularly on adverts
Never heard of or seen them? Well they look like this:


To read them you do three things:
  • Install a QR code reading app on your phone – and there are loads to choose from in the app stores
  • Open the app, which opens your camera
  • Point the lens at a QR code and the information linked to it opens. That could be a web page, an app, a video clip, a business card, your contact phone number which is then dialled. Infact, it could be pretty much anything.
Here’s Wikipedia’s definition of Quick Response codes: “A QR Code is a specific matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code), readable by dedicated QR barcode readers and camera phones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded can be text, URL or other data.”
A QR code is a very convenient way to get people who are on mobile devices to take a look at your content. They don’t have to find your app’s URL, nor send it to their phone.
So wouldn’t it be a good idea if you could link in this way from print and from static websites to your mobile ones?
You can, but you have to be able to write QR codes - generate them - so that others can then read them.
So you need a QR writer as well as a reader.
Sometimes these can be present in the same app, other times you need separate writers and readers.
While there are loads of QR readers offered to you for free, there are far fewer free QR writers. I've tested two: AT&T's Create-a-Code and Kaywa
And, because Kaywa's code reader is only currently available on a limited range of phones, I've also tested out two other QR read-only apps: QR Scanner and QR Reader.
Let's take a look at them. but if you can't stand the suspense of a compariosn, let me tell you right away that the combination I recommend is Kaywa as your QR code writer and any of the other three apps menioned for code reading.

Kaywa

Go to http://qrcode.kaywa.com/ and open the app. The interface asks you to paste in the URL of the site or other destination you want to create a QR code for.
It then generates HTML code that you can paste into your webpage or blog. You also see the graphic the coder creates:
I tried it with several of MMJ's online presences, and you'll see the results below. If you want to test them, have one of the app readers mentioned, or another if you prefer, loaded onto your phone, open the app and point to the codes below. You'll find code readers in any app store.

MMJ QR codes

You can create your code in a range of sizes from small to large. Small are best for most locations. These point to a range of social presences for Multimedia journalism: A Practical Guide

The MMJ iPhone app:

qrcode

Essential Reading for Journalists

This is our ever-updated RSS-based feed from the 17 sources of journalism news and views that we think every multimedia journalist ought to check at least once a day:
qrcode

MMJ'S Facebook page

qrcode

Andy Bull on Twitter

qrcode

AT&T's Create-a-Code

I’ve found AT&T’s Create-a-Code works well, but there are some significant restrictions on it's usefulness.
For one thing, you appear to have to use AT&T code reader to get them to open. In the three other code scanners I tried, none would recognise te AT&T code I had generated.
And Create-a-Code only allows you to create five free codes for personal use, and they only  remain valid for a year.
They say: “You can create codes that, when scanned, connect users to contact information and websites you choose such as v-cards, favourite websites, blogs, and much more. You can share your codes with friends, family, and colleagues on business cards, stickers, websites, or even on social network sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
“To scan codes you create with your AT&T Create-a-Code account, you'll need the AT&T Code Scanner.  Go to http://scan.mobi on your mobile device, text 'scan' to 72267, or go to your favourite app store.
Here are the four codes I generated - I couldn't get the app to writer to recognise my Twitter URL.

The MMJ iPhone app

 

 

 

The MMJ Blog

 

 

 

MMJ's Facebook page


 

Essential Reading for Journalists


Thursday, 17 February 2011

New ways of creating, structuring and presenting content online

Communicators put a lot of effort these days into reaching out to new audiences.

We work hard on developing our social media presences. We do our best to find those audiences through Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the rest. 

Our goal is that, by reaching out like this, we will engage with audiences that are less likely to find our print and online products, our TV and radio shows, our books and DVDs, through conventional means.
So, naturally, a lot of the focus among multimedia journalists who’d like to have a job tomorrow is to create content that works on these various social media platforms.
But, as journalists, we also need to pay as much attention as we can to what we are going to offer those new audiences, if and when we attract them back to our branded websites and print products.
What should we be doing there to clinch the deal? To get them to engage with us as regular readers and contributors?
That’s what I’ll be focusing on in the next MMJ masterclass, which will go live on February 26 but which I wanted to preview here with a few of the thoughts behind what I’ll be doing.
If you’ve been a subscriber to Multimedia Journalism: A Practical Guide over the 12 months since its launch you might have seen a series of linked masterclasses which went through the logic of finding new audiences, and the techniques to employ when attempting that.
The story so far...
What we’ll look at in Masterclass 22 is the other half that equation.
If you want to check out the previous posts in this area they are:
How to master Facebook and Twitter http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/node/441
Search (and everything else) is going social http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/node/524
So this next masterclass will be all about what we should be doing on our websites to hook that proportion of the new audience, the part that values us and what we do best: depth, breadth, richness, authority.
So here are the things I’m going to focus on.
They are all, really, atempts to answer the same question: how best do we create, and structure, rich content for the web?
I’ve been talking with Ben Davis, lecturer in the Department of Journalism and Mass Media at Rutgers.
Ben has thought as deeply, and written as perceptively, as anyone about the inadequacy of the inverted pyramid inherited from traditional media.
The Digital Media Pyramid
He’s come up with what he calls the Digital Media Pyramid, an approach that takes the old who, what, when etc, and turns it on it’s head – literally, as he has developed an upright rather than inverted pyramid.
He says of it: “The Digital Media Pyramid addresses the demands of today's journalists who could be writing a television, radio or print story and nearly simultaneously be required to re-purpose their work for a digital Internet audience.
“The Digital Media Pyramid does not replace the analogue-based Inverted Pyramid. It simply enhances it by bringing it into a 21st century digitally dominated information universe. The Digital Media Pyramid also commands an immediate understanding and seeks to come up with a formula of where multimedia, links and other staples of online journalism fit in to our storytelling.”
We’ll be taking an in-depth look at that.
I also want to look at long-form journalism. It was always the received wisdom that we didn’t do long on the web.
That view is changing, with significant efforts to invent a long form that will work online. Which, rather than turning our new audiences off, will actually give them what they want – perhaps what they never knew they wanted until they came upon it: depth, breadth, authority, but in a way that presents weighty issues, dense analysis, in a way that works online.
So there’s the Google Living Stories project, a co-production with newspapers including the New York Times and Washington Post that didn’t entirely come off but which began to give us a template for how long form might work.
The Topic Page
Also fascinating in this area is Jeff Jarvis on Topic Pages. Jeff, journalism prof at CUNY, sees the article as no longer being the main building block of journalism, saying its place has been taken by the topic page::“The topic page that covers a story as an ongoing process rather than as a finished product.”
The topic page being a place where, rather than just the latest shallow dip into a big story, you get that story in all its depth and complexity – the deep end not the shallow end of traditional online news content.
Finally, there is the re-imagining of the blog - long derided, perfectly fairly, as a lame version of the newspaper column.
The Beat Blog
The BBC’s Robert Peston (among others) has an approach to blogging, the Beat Blog, that puts his blog at the heart of everything he does.
Then there is what Alan Rusbridger, editor of The Guardian, has been saying about the potential of running, linked blogs, with “the most specialist material in the blog (linked to yet more specialist source material on the web – and the most general material in newsprint.)
He goes on: “Journalists have never before been able to tell stories so effectively, bouncing off each other, linking to each other (as the most generous and open-minded do), linking out, citing sources, allowing response – harnessing the best qualities of text, print, data, sound and visual media.”
So what I hope to do is draw the strands in all of the above, and more, together. To build these thoughts into a new strategy for creating, structuring and presenting online content.
And after all that...
Here are some of the other topics we’ll tackle in MMJ over the spring:
Masterclass 23: Location-based content for local journalism
How to build applications on a range of emerging platforms
Masterclass 24: Curating user-generated content
How to cover a major story by blending your own material with that from other professional and citizen journalists
Masterclass 25: Real-time reporting
How social media can be used to cover breaking stories


Our first e-learning course: iPhone for Journalism... how to become a 100% mobile, multimedia journalist

video

Your iPhone has the power to transform the way you work, and to greatly enhance your effectiveness as a journalist.
This seven-module e-learning course offers tuition, demonstrations and hands-on exercises in how to file reports, using the full range of multimedia, from your iPhone to the static web and to mobile devices.
We will cover both:
  • the iPhone as a news gathering, editing and transmitting device, and
  • how to establish publishing platforms for the material you create
The modules are:

Module1: Gadgets to make your iPhone reporting more professional
Microphones, lights, brackets, Buetooth keyboards and more. Bits of kit that maximise the iPhone's performance as a journalism tool.
Module 2: Establishing publishing platforms - recording, editing and publishing from the iPhone to your range of publishing platforms
The basics: filing to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube
More advanced: establishing a wesbite that acts as both a publishing platform for multimedia content and a distributing hub for your content to social and other platforms. Plus, how to embed all your multimedia content in an existing static website.
Module 3: Creating and filing text
Using the iPhone’s keyboard and the inbuilt Notes software, plus consideration of alternative free and inexpensive software and teh best protable Bluetooth keyboards on the market.
Module 4: Creating and filing audio reports
The range of software compared and tested. Which to use, and how to get the best out of each.
Module 5: Creating and filing still images
How to take, edit and publish stills, picture stories and photo albums. Working with iPhone app software including Flirkr, Photoshop Express and Autostitch panorama creator
Module 6: Broadcasting live video straight from your phone
Broadcasting live to a range of publishing platforms usign the best live video apps on the market.
Module 7: Professional-quality video and audio editing on your iPhone
Using Vericorder 1st Video software to record, edit and publish video and audio packages
Equipment: what you'll need You'll need an iPhone, and a few free or inexpensive apps.We aSO take you through a range of harDware enhancements, but the only one you must have is an inexpensive external microphone.
Who's it for?
Any journalist who wants to use their iPhone to transform the way they work
How the course works
The course is delivered online, through a dedicated website that only students and tutor have access to.
Students can contact the tutor at any time, either publicly on the site through comments, or privately through email. Phone support is also available.
The modules include to a range of projects that students are invited to complete.
The results of these assignments can be submitted to the tutor for assessment. At any point students may contact the tutor for additional guidance, either publicly or privately.
Once you have signed up and your payment has cleared we contact you with course access details.
Costs and signing up
The course is now available at a special introductory price of £95. That's a fraction of the cost of most training, and is only available for a short introductory period.

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You can pay securely via PayPal. Don't have a PayPal account? No problem, pay by credit card via Paypal. Click here
Once you've signed up, be sure to email us so we can start your enrolment process.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Happy Birthday MMJ!

MMJ has reached its first birthday.

And, to celebrate, we’re inviting non-subscribers to see what they are missing.

But what is Multimedia Journalism: A Practical Guide, and what does it aim to do for journalists?

MMJ was always going to be something of an experiment.
When I hit upon the idea of creating a learning resource in multimedia journalism for students and those in mid-career who wanted to catch up with new skills, I knew that a conventional publishing package would be completely inadequate.
Because multimedia journalism is a fast-moving area, in which one piece of software or hardware may lead the way for a while but then be totally eclipse, practically overnight, by a new one, a print publication could only do part of the job.
There had to be a way of reacting immediately to new developments and to present new programmes of learning as the opportunities for multimedia journalists – such as the new-found ability for non-coders to create their own smartphone apps – developed. So MMJ needed an extensive web platform too.
It also seemed pretty dumb to try to tackle topics such as audio podcasting and video editing solely in print. Obviously, a website was the place to demonstrate broadcasting skills, in the media that was most appropriate to them.
Yet a print product would still be a vital component of the overall package.
Infact, a textbook is the perfect place to present the unchanging absolutes of good journalistic practice.
Ensuring that old school journalism teaching underpinned all the new media instruction we covered was core to the approach I wanted to take.
So I went for a three-pronged approach, with a textbook, a website, and an extensive social media presence.
The textbook had to be completely integrated with the website. The site had to mirror the print version in every way, with each short section of the book having its web equivalent - an equivalent that could be updated at any time.
I’ve also tried to integrate MMJ with social media; using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Posterous, RSS feeds, and both web- and native mobile phone apps to reach an audience that would not necessarily discover the project through old-media channels.
I wanted MMJ to have a presence on as many platforms as possible, and for those presences to demonstrate the best use of each platform.
I also wanted to create a community of students and media professionals, and to be able to present new areas of multimedia journalism as they arose. So I developed an area of the website called Masterclasses, where industry professionals could share their expertise with the MMJ audience of keen learners.
Having the Masterclasses area meant that new areas that were not originally included in the book and its web-mirror could be built.
So for example data journalism, which has increased massively in importance since MMJ launched in February 2010, thanks to Wikileaks and the UK MPs’ expenses scandal, could be given its own programme of learning.
And, as the employment market for newly-qualified journalists went through its convulsions, representatives from each area of the media – local papers, broadcasting, consumer and B2B magazines, could give their up-to-the-minute advice on getting that all-important first job.
One year on I believe the experiment is working. We’ve published 21 masterclasses on topics as diverse as Web 3.0, how to use your iPhone to become a completely mobile multimedia journalist and broadcaster, and how to use Facebook and Twitter as both publishing platforms and story-finding tools.
The website is regularly updated, thanks in part to enthusiastic community members who alert me to broken links and outdated content. 
None of this would have been possible if I hadn’t found an editor, in Aileen Storry, and a publisher, in Taylor and Francis, that understood the need to reinvent the textbook as a multimedia entity if the MMJ project was to succeed.
Inevitably, MMJ will never be completed. There are many new opportunities and areas of expertise that multimedia journalists need to master.
I’ll be previewing what’s to come over MMJ’s second year soon. And non-subscribers will get a series of insights into the new areas of learning we have been covering.
To find out more about MMJ, go here:  http://www.multimedia-journalism.co.uk/about_the_course

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Get started in HyperText Markup Language and Cascading Style Sheets with Multimedia Journalism's latest masterclass

In MMJ Masterclass 21: Getting Started in HTML and CSS  we’re going to give you 10 projects to complete
Get through them and you’ll have a good understanding of what HyperText Markup Langauage and Cascading Style Sheets are; and how to use them to create, mark up and style web pages
 
Listen!

First, let's take a quick look at what HTML code is

If you right click on any web page you’ll see among the options presented: View Source or View Page Source
Select this option and a box will open with a load of code in it.
That is the code behind the page you are viewing: all the hidden instructions for how the page should look.

If you scan through it, you’ll probably see some mentions of HTML – which is HyperText Markup Language, and, some of CSS which stands for Cascading Style Sheets, and others including perhaps Java and Flash.
We don’t focus on such code much in MMJ for one good reason: most journalists never need to know it.
As you’ll have discovered if you have spent some time on MMJ, particularly the chapters on building websites and newsletters, and the masterclasses on building hyperlocal sites, mobile sites and smartphone apps, you’ll have seen that these days you can do almost everything you want to, create all sorts of websites, apps and other stuff, without knowing anything about code.
Your content management system writes the code for you, as you create your content. You drive the car, and stuff goes on under the bonnet that you don’t necessary need to understand or know anything about.
But for some journalism jobs it is useful – particularly now that, the more skills you have, the more valuable you are to an employer who is looking to save money, and cut posts, wherever they can.
Some employers expect you to understand HTML and to be comfortable with using it – at least in a very basic way – if they are to employ you.
So, because MMJ seeks to be the complete practical guide for the multimedia journalist and journalism student, it would be remiss to ignore the subject.
It’s as well to know, at the very lest, what HTML is, what it does, and the basics of how to use it. The same goes for CSS, Cascading Style Sheets, which are what you use to style your HTML files.
If it’s the difference between getting a job you want and not getting it, then it’s worth knowing.
So the aim of this masterclass is to introduce you to the basics, in a series of 10 projects that will help you build your ability to put HTML and CSS into practice. So this is a beginner’s guide, and as such it fit in to the basic level of study at MMJ, the one called Getting Started in the book and the companion website.
Once you're done, if any employer or potential employer asks you if you know HTML and CSS you’ll be able to say you have a reasonable basic knowledge – enough to enable you to code text for web pages, and apply style style sheets to them.
It won’t teach you everything, not by any means, but we will return to the subject in future masterclasses, and let you build on what you have learned here.

Next: An introduction to HTML (Going live on Saturday)


Thursday, 3 February 2011

Why The Daily fails to fulfill the goal Rupert Murdoch set for it: to re-imagine the craft of journalism

At the launch of the iPad news app The Daily, Rupert Murdoch said: “we must re-imagine our craft”

He’s right. The question is, does The Daily do that? Can it, as he also said "make the business of newsgathering viable again"?

In some ways, iPad apps offer a reassuring step backwards for old school journalists, because of the linear presentation of content, where the reader flips through pages just as they do in a magazine or newspaper, being exposed to ads along the way.

Nothing wrong with that. The Kindle shows that an electronic version of a book works perfectly well, bringing the ease of the old medium together with some modest electronic enhancements. But the Kindle is not a re-imagining of the book.

From all that I’ve seen and read of The Daily, it is really just old-style journalism with some electronic enhancements: great graphics, a bit of interactivity, some chances for reader feedback.

This video gives you an idea of what it offers:




But to my mind it’s not a re-imagining. It’s a backward-looking presentation of a print product on an electronic medium.

If you are very old (and British)  you might remember how the BBC handled plays in the early '60s. They stuck a camera out in the auditorium and presented a view of the drama akin to that you’d get from a front row seat in the dress circle. When the broadcast started the curtains were drawn, when they drew back the action was presented. There was very little diversion from the one-viewpoint presentation that someone sitting in the theatre would have enjoyed.

Such an approach to broadcasting drama ignored the fact that there had been a movie industry for many decades. It sought to replicate a medium – live theatre – that was, and remains, supreme within its own ambit. There is nothing like the immediacy of a live performance. But a drama on TV isn’t a live performance. And a newspaper or magazine on an electronic device, with a few added bells and whistles, is not going to take journalism into the new era.

All the talk of Web 3.0 may sound like a load of hype to old schoolers such as Mr Murdoch, but it actually represents a seismic shift in the way content is consumed in the online medium.

The emerging web is a place where content is very important, but where it can be personalised to suit the needs, concerns and interests of each individual user; where a mix of personal preference, location, interaction with friends and other social groups, can all be blended with that content.

It’s a place where the desire to follow through on content – which might be something as simple as a review – by finding where the product is stocked locally, what it can be bought for, how many of your friends or, more widely, those with characteristics you share in common have decided to buy it, becomes a seamless part of the experience of consuming a piece of journalism.

If we want to re-imagine our craft we need to imagine it in a context where our journalism, our content, while still being perfectly viable in the print medium, can be adapted for the emerging Web 3.0 version of multimedia.

So I don’t see The Daily as being more than a half step forward. Why, even its name harks back to a time when there was one news update a day. Infact, this app will be updated at numerous points during the day.

What seems to me far more of a re-imagining of our craft is an iPhone app such as Vogue Stylist, where Vogue content is chopped, diced and delivered to each individual user as they want it.

Where coverage of trends and advice on what to buy is married with the ability to upload images from your own wardrobe. Where you can see what others who share your characteristics are buying. Where you can engage with friends.

Such an app is a much more profound step towards a re-imagining of journalism.

If we re-imagine our craft effectively we will see that our content really does have a value in the new world of Web 3.0; that it can be made profoundly relevant and important to each reader; that it can be personalised to their tastes and interests and, most importantly; that it becomes a powerful link in the chain that we all experience.

The chain of finding information, views and intelligence, of sifting it, seeing what our peers think of it, and reaching decisions – whether they be purchasing decisions or conclusions about politics, a football game or anything else we are interested in.

Coincidently, the artist David Hockney showed just how a re-imagining – I think artist prefer to talk about new ways of seeing – can be achieve in an article in one of Mr Murdoch’s papers, the latest Sunday Times.

Hockney is famously adept at seeing the opportunities for an artist that each step forward in technology offers, whether it’s the fax or the iPhone. The big pockets he had put in his suits to take a sketch pad now hold an iPad. He uses an app that enables him to ‘paint’ on the iPad’s electronic screen. For him, the iPad takes painting into a new era.

He says: “It’s a luminous medium, and luminous subjects suddenly become very interesting — light, light hitting glass, things that are shiny... You can have as many layers as you like. With watercolours, you can’t have more than three layers or it turns muddy.”

As the author of the piece, Bryan Appleyard, comments: “The machine has one further astonishing power. It can retrace the entire drawing process as an animation, so every touch of the artist can be seen.”

Appleyard adds of Hockney: “He thinks the iPad changes the history of art”

And he goes on: “His message is that technology and the image — the machine and the hand — are natural companions. In taking up the iPad, he is following an ancient tradition of innovation.”

However, there is another piece of new technology that Hockney is using, and which is much more of a re-imagining of art.  It is “The big Jeep in the front of the house.”

The Jeep is fitted with a rig holding nine Canon DSLR cameras. “These were set up to shoot high-definition video and wired to a small nine-screen monitor in the back seat. They would then drive at 5mph twice up his favourite country lane, Rudston Road, once with the rig pointing to the left and once to the right. Hockney would sit in the back, watching the monitor.

“The results are then shown to me simultaneously on the 18 screens. They are breathtaking. They make me feel I have never seen a tree before.”

I think that last comment is the most pertinent, and is worth asking in respect of The Daily. Does the Daily make you feel like you have never seen a newspaper before?

If it does, then Mr Murdoch’s team has successfully re-imagined our craft. If it doesn’t, then they ain’t.