Propublica: The Opportunity Gap

An amazing project: ProPublica's investigation into access to advanced courses in US secondary education includes a database of schools allows users to log in with Facebook to look up their school. There are individual pages for each state, district, and school, and a page allowing users to compare schools (and Tweet their comparisons).

Online Journalism Blog: What I learned from the Facebook Page experiment – and what happens next

"It suits emotive material ... With most blogging it’s quite easy to ‘just do it’ and then figure out the bells and whistles later. With a Facebook Page I think a bit of preparation goes a long way – especially to avoid problems later on. ... The lack of tags and categories also make it difficult to retrieve updates and notes – and highlight the problems for search engine optimisation. ... short term traffic to individual posts was probably higher than I would normally get on the blog outside Facebook. On the other, there was little opportunity for long term traffic."

Malcolm Coles: The injunction DID protect the footballer Google search volumes show

"Until the last few days, there were many more people searching for injunction than there were for his name. Each spike in searches for injunction sees a rise in searches for his name. But it’s only on this Saturday (the final day in the graph) that search volumes for the name really outstrip the word injunction. Hardly anyone has been searching for his name plus the word affair until this weekend."

Point to Point: Dear Journalists, This is The Title Search Engines Care About

"For many journalists, SEO = headline + keyword stuffing. It’s all they know. However, if journalists really want to know and understand how SEO can help them and their publications they should worry a lot less about the importance of headlines and focus on their company’s sitemaps, site architecture, endless duplicate content, internal linking and the like. But they won’t. Many journalists opine about headlines and keyword stuffing because that’s all the information their SEO team is giving them. And it’s all most care to know."

The Atlantic: ‘Google Doesn’t Laugh’: Saving Witty Headlines in the Age of SEO

"If all online searches are literal, what happens to the headlines that involve a play on words? Are those headlines relegated to the print edition, where headline writers have a captive audience? Indeed, as newspapers embrace search engine optimization, and as young journalists are taught to value Google visibility above all else, many copy editors fear that funny headlines are quickly going the way of the classified ad."

O’Reilly Radar: BrightScope liberates financial advisor data

Useful advice for data journalism projects, as well: "[The] government data that BrightScope has gathered on financial advisors will go further than a given profile page. Over time, as search engines like Google and Bing index the information, the data will be searchable where consumers are actually looking for it. That's aligned with one of the laws for open data that Tim O'Reilly has been sharing for years: Don't make people find data. Make data find the people."

Online Journalism Blog: Is community moderation etc. journalism? Another ice cream question

"The point of community management/SEO/social media optimisation etc. from a journalist’s point of view is that it should seek to involve readers as early as possible, and so improve the editorial product while it is produced. Not only that but also so that, once published, any errors/additions etc. are likely to be added by users. It’s the difference between seeing users as passive audiences, or as active collaborators."

Nieman Journalism Lab: The Newsonomics of The New York Times’ pay fence

Ken Doctor: "Though the FT and the Wall Street Journal have long operated successful pay models, the Times’ leap is a big one: The Times isn’t mainly a business newspaper. If it can succeed charging readers for “general news,” that’s a milestone for newspapers around the world. ...We know that the vast majority of visitors won’t reach the 20-article-view level and won’t bump into the fence. They are fodder for advertising, and a slim few will become more regular users over time. Then, there’s that small percentage — one to three percent — who do pay for digital-only subscriptions, in addition, of course to the print subscribers who will now get 'all-access' ... How open the Times will be to social traffic is a big consideration, as social traffic is the fastest growing source of all traffic, and represents a more engaged audience than search-driven visitors."