Editor column: Tribune touts its latest storytelling tool
Online readers of news expect a smorgasbord of storytelling experiences, a mix of written stories, extensive photo galleries, interactive data and video.
Visitors to sltrib.com will notice a new feature that promises to increase and enhance the use of video on Tribune stories.
Using Tout, a real-time publishing application, reporters can post short videos from the scene to our website and mobile platforms. The whole process from shooting on a smartphone to posting can be accomplished in seconds.
Our first forays with this new tool include reporter Tom Wharton taking viewers to a Salt Lake Valley J.C. Penney store as a manager anticipates the onslaught of shoppers and the ensuing madness as the doors opened Thanksgiving night. Jennifer Napier-Pearce recently took us to the slopes in Park City on the first day of its ski season. Technology writer Vince Horiuchi presented a how-to preview on a new cable TV platform. Assistant sports editor Kevin Morriss weighed in with quick takes on all six high school state football champions.
These short videos 45 seconds max add another layer to our reporting. For breaking news, it places sltrib.com visitors where news is happening.
When we produce a Tout video, it generally will show up in three places: a widget on the home page of sltrib.com, as an embed in a story on our website, and on the Tout website, where it will be in the mix with submissions from hundreds of other news organizations including The Wall Street Journal and ESPN.
Tribune readers can join Tout and follow our work from there. It's free. There are Apple and Android apps, or you can access from a desktop browser, at Tout.com. You can find our reporters and channel by searching "Salt Lake Tribune." To follow our channel, go to http://www.tout.com/channels/salt-lake-tribune. From there, you can follow our reporters and even reply back with video comments on our posts.
Tout is just a piece of our video enhancements at sltrib.com. Reporter Napier-Pearce and our sports online content manager Brennan Smith produce live video chats TribTalk in which reporters and newsmakers discuss the latest stories in news and sports during the lunch hour. The Tribune sports staff uses video extensively to supplement its reporting.
Our recent look back at President John F. Kennedy incorporated video interviews with Utahns on their memories of his impact on their lives and the nation and world. Outdoor writer Brett Prettyman's ongoing collaboration with KUED, "Utah's Bucklet List," includes an essential video component, taking viewers to the state's most spectacular locales.
Will all Tribune stories eventually have a video component? No. Will some stories be video only? Yes, but they will be the exception. We deploy video when it makes sense as a storytelling tool and when it adds to the understanding of a story. It is another arrow in our news-presentation quiver. And you, the reader, expect it.
Kudos: The Associated Press Media Editors honored a photograph by The Tribune's Leah Hogsten as its national photo of the month for September.
Hogsten captured an indelible moment with 6-year-old Ben Johnson and Shante Johnson at the graveside service for Shante's husband and Ben's father, Draper police Sgt. Derek Johnson. The officer was gunned down while on patrol on the first Sunday in September.
Hogsten's photo was chosen from more than 60 works submitted by AP new bureaus from around the country.
Terry Orme is the editor and publisher of The Tribune. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.