Monday, August 13, 2012

Scripps London Team gets the inside look at The Guardian

By: Holly Moody

Margaret Holborn, Head of Education at The Guardian
LONDON–What would seem like an interior designers dream office complete with posh furniture, sleek flat screens, transparent conference rooms and bright pops of color is actually home to two of the UK’s largest news sources – The Guardian and The Observer.

The Scripps London team received the opportunity to tour their 4-story office in the heart of St. Pancras, London on Monday afternoon to get the inside scoop on how they manage to turn out their daily content.

The Guardian is an international news source serving over a million readers from the UK to the U.S. Producing content for it’s web and print mediums, Monday through Saturday, their staff of journalists, editors, and photographers remain busy working to get the story throughout the day.
The office offers an integrated newsroom set up where journalists who write for the same section of the paper such as fashion work closely together.

"I feel like that means that they can cooperate with each other a lot more and it makes for interdepartmental communication," said Scripps London reporter Jillian Fellows.

The Observer, a weekly paper that is only circulated on Sunday, is housed in the same building as The Guardian but has a separate newsroom.

“Seventy percent of people that do not take The Guardian during the week read The Observer,” said Head of Education at The Guardian Margaret Holborn.

Their office is not only furnished with a coffee and snack bar for their employees but a multimedia wing, which contains audio rooms for recording podcasts.Specialists also have a workspace to recreate models of Olympic events for a series called Brick by Brick where they animate the plastic building bricks to recreate iconic moments during the games.

"I wanted to know how I could get that job," said Scripps London reporter Olivia Arbogast. "It was amazing to see how much time they put into creating those."

The staff has three meetings throughout the day ranging from a 10 o’clock meeting where they discuss their upcoming content to a 5 o'clock meeting where they go over a rough copy of the next day’s newspaper.

“In the morning meeting they discuss website traffic, the biggest hits of the day, go through the final edition of the paper and the top 3 stories that they are going to be covering,” Holborn said. “There can be heated debates about lead issues of the day.”

Staff members also discuss how their readers are responding to their content. The Guardian is working to increase reader interactivity with the growth of their online presence.

The publication has developed several apps where readers can access their content on the go.
Scripps London team relaxes in the lobby of The Guardian.
"Newspapers have to be adaptable if they want to survive and that is just the way technology is going," Fellows said.

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