I started the week off by attending a game plan meeting for Sport Diver magazine. This meeting is when Patricia (Editor-in-Chief), Becky (Managing Editor), Elizabeth (Art Director) and Chelsea (Photo Editor) discuss the upcoming issue. They break down every section and go through every item and story. This ensures that nothing is left out, and by the end of the meeting everyone knows the status of the different stories and features.
After the meeting Patricia showed me how Bonnier tracks the popularity of online articles. We can see how many shares and likes posts get and break it down further and determine which link brought a user to the site. Not just which social media link they clicked from, but whether they clicked the headline, the image, or another part of the link that caught their eye. I also learned the Scuba Diving‘s website has just gone through a major update. The site moved to the newest version of Drupal, and as a result the design was made to be responsive. This means that the site adapts to the size of the web browser, optimizing the experience for computers, tablets, and phones. Sport Diver will be going through a similar update in the coming months.
To wrap up the first day Patricia assigned me to do research for Scuba Diving‘s next Ocean Action brief. This segment of the magazine highlights groups and organizations, like last month’s WildAid Shark Savers, that are active in marine conservation and gives divers tips on how they can help the cause. For my Ocean Action I’ve decided to research the Manta Trust.
The second day Ashley Annin, the Managing Editor for Scuba Diving, assigned me a second story. This one covered a recent demonstration at the Manta Ray Bay Resort scuba show where 360Heros and wild life filmmaker Bill Macdonald showed off a virtual shark dive using an Oculus Rift. I researched the company’s camera rig that holds 6 GoPro cameras and got to work setting up an interview with Bill Macdonald, who shot the footage.
On Wednesday I went to an Intern Acquisition meeting with fellow interns Katie and Lauren. This meeting is essentially were we check in with our editors and update them on our progress. During the meeting I pitched an idea for a short segment based on a story I had come across that morning. In Australia Adventure Bay Charters has been using heavy-metal music to attract sharks on its cage dives and had recently used this technique to help a Shark Week documentary crew find some great white sharks.
That afternoon Alex Bean showed me how to get into the Sport Diver and Scuba Diving websites in order to post stories online. A lot of it seemed familiar because of my experience with html, but I’ll really get a feel for it once I’m assigned to get one of our print articles up on the website!
Thursday I had my first interview. I spoke to Bill Macdonald over the phone about people’s reactions to the virtual shark dive as well as his experience filming the 360 degree footage in Yap. Bill was so excited to share his story with me I hardly had to ask any questions! Besides the information on the story he also imparted some wisdom from Philippe Cousteau, “When you’re showing film to someone, impact occurs when you show somebody something new, something totally outside their experience.”
Later that day I also got to proofread a couple of articles. At first I had trouble keeping focus. I was supposed to be checking for errors and typos, but I kept getting caught up in the stories and would need to start over!
Friday I finished up my story about baiting sharks with heavy-metal music and was assigned two stories for Sport Diver. One was about The Ocean Cleanup, which is an organization that is planning to clear out half of the plastic in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch using a passive collection system that utilizes the gyres’s currents. The other story is about The Whales of Bristol a statue that was created to celebrate Bristol’s status as European Green Capital 2015. The exhibit itself features two life sized whales made out of wicker wood swimming through a literal ocean of plastic. It is meant to bring attention to the beauty and fragility of the ocean as well as the damage that is caused by humans. I ended the week researching these new assignments and sending out interview requests.
Can’t wait to see what next week brings!