College Presents Inaugural Award in Investigative Data Journalism

Published: September 27th, 2014

DSC_3056Minnesota Public Radio’s coverage of the cover-up of sexual abuse by the clergy in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s reporting on delays in hospital screening of newborns won the inaugural “University of Florida Award for Investigative Data Journalism” at the Online News Association’s 2014 Online Journalism Awards banquet, Saturday night in Chicago.

The award, established this year by the UF College of Journalism and Communications, was presented in two categories – Small/Medium and Large. They recognize the growing importance of digital and data journalism and honor high-impact data journalism that is exceptionally well presented.

“We congratulate these two winners,” said Diane McFarlin, Dean of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications. “We hope this award encourages more groundbreaking journalism using big data, and entices more journalists to learn how to find and tell significant stories through data.”

The two winners will each receive a $7,500 prize, the largest award given by ONA. The prizes were established through a generous gift to the University of Florida from the estate of the late Lorraine Dingman.

Members of the reporting and producing teams will be invited to the UF campus to work with College of Journalism and Communications students and faculty as journalists in residence this spring.

“We hope these journalists will be able to share their stories with our faculty and students, and show how you can tell important stories through data,” McFarlin said. “This award also helps raise the bar for our College as we implement our own educational programs in data.”

The Online News Association is the world’s largest membership organization of digital journalists; its annual awards honor data journalism, visual digital storytelling, investigative journalism, public service, technical innovation and general excellence.

About the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications

The University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications is driving innovation and engagement across the disciplines of advertising, journalism, public relations and telecommunication. The strength of its programs, faculty, students and alumni  — in research and in practice — has earned the college ongoing recognition as one of the best in the nation among its peers. The college offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and certificates, both online and on campus. The college’s strength is drawn from both academic rigor and experiential learning. CJC students have the opportunity to gain practical experience in the Innovation News Center, which generates content across multiple platforms, and a strategic communication agency that will begin operation in Fall 2014. The college includes seven broadcast and digital media properties and the nation’s only program in public interest communications.

About the Online News Association
The Online News Association is the world’s largest association of digital journalists. ONA’s mission is to inspire innovation and excellence among journalists to better serve the public. The membership includes news writers, producers, designers, editors, bloggers, developers, photographers, educators, students and others who produce news for and support digital delivery systems. ONA also hosts the annual Online News Association conference and administers the Online Journalism Awards.

Category: College News

Elite Daily features Mark Little visit for The Innovators Series

Published: September 25th, 2014

The Innovators Series visit of Mark Little, founder and CEO of Storyful, is the subject of this Sept. 24, 2014 Elite Daily story by student Katie Campbell, “How Storyful CEO Mark Little Sees The Future Of Journalism As Influenced By Social Innovation.”

Clay Calvert interviews Hustler magazine’s Larry Flynt about 1st Amendment

Published: September 25th, 2014

Larry Flynt and Clay Calvert

Clay Calvert (standing) with Larry Flynt in Flynt’s office in Beverly Hills. (Photo by Steve Johnson.)

Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication Clay Calvert interviews Hustler magazine publisher and 1st Amendment champion Larry Flynt on the occasion of Hustler‘s 40th anniversary in a video published by The Newseum Institute. The video is produced by Steve Johnson.

Read more and watch the video →

Amy Jo Coffey participates in AEF visiting professor program

Published: September 24th, 2014

Amy Jo Coffey

Amy Jo Coffey, Associate Professor of Telecommunication at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications, was one of 15 professors selected nationally to participate in the Advertising Educational Foundation’s Visiting Professor Program this summer.

She spent the last two weeks of July as the guest of two media agencies within the Starcom MediaVest Group–MediaVest in New York City and Tapestry in Chicago.

During the program, Coffey observed the media planning and buying processes, strategy work sessions, and vendor and strategic partner meetings. She had the opportunity to meet with leaders in consumer insights, research and marketing, and sales from Univision, Telemundo, Spotify, Google, and Facebook, as well as key personnel and executives from MediaVest and Tapestry.

As part of the Visiting Professor Program, Coffey also gave a research talk at both agencies, sharing her insights on reaching multicultural, non-English speaking and bilingual audiences in the U.S.

Starcom MediaVest Group is the largest media agency network in the world, and Tapestry, part of SMG Multicultural, is the largest multicultural brand agency in billings in the United States. Both are also among the most awarded for their work. More information on AEF’s Visiting Professor Program can be found at

Coffey has also had a stellar research year, publishing several articles in international journals:

She also two other articles published recently, which were co-authored with Yan Yang (PhD, ’11) now of High Point University:

  • Yang, Y. & Coffey, A.J. (2014). “Audience valuation in the new media era: Interactivity, online engagement, and electronic word-of-mouth value.” The International Journal on Media Management, 16(2), 77-103.
  • Yang, Y. & Coffey, A.J. (2014). “Audience interactivity on video websites and the business implications for online media platforms.” Journal of Media Business Studies, 11(2), 25-56.

Juan-Carlos Molleda opens the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management’s Research Colloquium in Spain

Published: September 24th, 2014

Juan-Carlos Molleda, UF College of Journalism and Communications’ Department of Public Relations Chair and Trustee of the Institute for Public Relations, was the keynote speaker of the opening plenary at the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management’s (GA) Research Colloquium on Sunday, Sept. 21, in Madrid, Spain.

Juan-Carlos Molleda

Juan-Carlos Molleda

The Global Alliance started its operations in 2002.  It is the world’s largest confederation with a secretariat in Lugano, Switzerland, that represents, unites, provides development resources, ands advocates for national and regional professional associations and institutional members of the public relations and corporate communication field.

The name of Molleda’s keynote address was “What can professionals and scholars learn from each other?” He is also the chair of the Colloquium session “Developing conversations in a globalized world.”

“I discussed the virtues of comparative research and how communication technologies are allowing academics and professionals to work together on conducting multinational studies and contributing to the body of knowledge and strategic practices,” Molleda said. “I explained methodological challenges and theoretical contributions for an evolving and expanding global profession and area of study.”

Molleda will also act as chair of the professional session “Values” at the 8th GA World Public Relations Forum.  The confederation of the world’s public relations and communication professional associations and institutions hosts this event every two years.  The host association is Dircom, the Spanish Association of Communication Directors.

At the Global Alliance’s Research Colloquium and World Public Relations Forum in 2012, delegates from 30 countries agreed on a vision of the communicative organization with three key roles for public relations and communication: The definition of organizational character and values; the creation of cultures of listening and engagement; and the instilling of responsibility in all its dimensions – individual, professional, organizational and societal.

This year, delegates representing 62 countries in the 2014 Forum in Madrid continue this conversation on the gathering theme: “Communication with conscience.”

“The outcome of the 2014 Forum centers on the key principles of communicative leadership: How can communication help organizations become leading actors? How can public relations and communication professionals play leading roles in this transformation? What personal journeys have leading communicators had to get them to leadership roles?” Molleda said.

PBS MediaShift publishes Spiker article on Mark Little, Innovators Series

Published: September 23rd, 2014

PBS MediaShift on September 23, 2014 published “Mark Little: ‘This is the Golden Age of Storytelling’,” an article by Journalism Associate Professor and Interim Chair Ted Spiker about the recent Innovators Series visit to the college by Mark Little, CEO and founder of Storyful.

Category: Faculty Bylines

Slate quotes Calvert on Elonis v. United States

Published: September 18th, 2014

Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication Clay Calvert is quoted in the Sept. 17, 2014 article in Slate, “Schooling the Supreme Court on Rap Music,” regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to hear the true threats case of Elonis v. United States involving alleged threats conveyed on Facebook in the form of rap lyrics.

Science writers will share expertise as UF Science Journalists in Residence

Published: September 17th, 2014

Two leading science journalists will each spend a week on the University of Florida campus this year as part of the university’s new Science Journalist in Residence Program.

Jennie Erin Smith

Jennie Erin Smith

David Epstein

David Epstein

Jennie Erin Smith, author of “Stolen World: A Tale of Reptiles, Smugglers, and Skulduggery,” will visit the university in early November as UF’s first Science Journalist in Residence, speaking to students in the College of Journalism and Communications, giving a public lecture and interacting with faculty researchers.

David Epstein, author of “The Sports Gene: Inside the Science of Extraordinary Athletic Performance,” will serve as the second journalist in residence in late January.

“The goal of the program is to give students and faculty the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of science journalism through interacting with some of its most captivating practitioners,” said Diane McFarlin, dean of the College of Journalism and Communications.

Smith specializes in science and natural history writing and has a longtime interest in zoos, museums, animals and conservation. A former environmental reporter at the Daytona Beach News-Journal, she currently writes for the Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker and other publications.

“I am honored to become UF’s first science journalist in residence,” Smith said. “Science journalism can mean a lot of things, but all good science writers demonstrate curiosity, impartiality, attention to detail and the ability to simplify complex ideas without distorting them. I look forward to a great exchange of thoughts and experiences, with students and faculty alike, during my week at UF.”

Smith spent years investigating the exotic animal trade for “Stolen World,” which The New Yorker called an “accomplished, often uproarious account of the international reptile trade,” and Salon called “a flabbergasting chronicle of atrocious behavior, foolhardy schemes and dangerous animals, that reads like a real-life Elmore Leonard novel.”

“The Sports Gene” was a New York Times bestseller for Epstein, who has written for Sports Illustrated, Discover, Scientific American, Slate, The Washington Post, National Geographic and many other publications. His TED Talk on the subject has been viewed more than 1.7 million times.

“The fact that the program is specifically looking to promote discussion about science journalism is really meaningful to me,” said Epstein. “I think opening a discourse with journalism students about the power and peril of communicating science will be invigorating both for me and for them.”

UF Provost Joe Glover said that as part of its preeminence initiative, the university wants to create more opportunities for students and faculty to interact with the top leaders in their fields.

“We’re pursuing this goal through the new faculty we’re hiring, but we are also committed to bringing in more leading academics and professionals as guests – esteemed visitors who will both share their wisdom and get some exposure to our dynamic and exceptional university,” Glover said. “The new Science Journalist in Residence program is a great example of that approach, and I look forward to hosting our first two science journalists this year.”


Contact: Quenta P. Vettel, 352-846-3013,
Writer: Joseph Kays

Poynter quotes Lewis on plagiarism

Published: September 17th, 2014

Journalism Associate Professor Norman Lewis is quoted in the Sept. 16, 2014 article on, “Is it original? An editor’s guide to identifying plagiarism.”

Calvert: Religious Crimes and Free Speech: From Pussy Riot to Fellatio with Jesus Statuary, the Controversies Keep on Coming

Published: September 16th, 2014

HuffPost: Crime on September 16, 2014 published “Religious Crimes and Free Speech: From Pussy Riot to Fellatio with Jesus Statuary, the Controversies Keep on Coming” a column by Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication Clay Calvert.

Category: Faculty Bylines