Closing the Information Gap

In journalism school, we were taught to answer the five questions: who, what, when, where, and why (or, in my Southern class, “what for”). Journalists ideally accomplish this through stellar writing and composition of story, regardless of whether or not it’s an inverted pyramid. But what if journalists went beyond the story and answered how the reporting happened?

I happened to stumble across this CNN article while doing research, and my eyes were immediately drawn to something I hadn’t seen before on a mainstream news site: explaining parts of the issue that the article was covering.

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Qualifications in the Newsroom

When I first arrived in the Bay Area, I picked up Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg. It’s probably the most cliche thing I could’ve done. It’s not like it wasn’t available in Memphis, but I knew that coming here, I had something to learn. (I still do, always.) I wanted to read about what a woman on the inside of a tech company would be able to offer as advice, suspecting that I’d probably end up at one due to their sheer saturation.

Since reading that book, one statistic — quoted not only by Sandberg but others talking about the “confidence gap” in women — stays in the back of my mind. The statistic comes from a Hewlett-Packard internal report, summarized succinctly in the Harvard Business Review by Tara Sophia Mohr in 2014: “Men apply for a job when they meet only 60% of the qualifications, but women apply only if they meet 100% of them.”

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Snapchat’s Redesign Could Show A Culture Shift for Social Media

Even after 1.2 million users signed a Change.org petition, Snap doubled down on the changes made to Snapchat — a major update that totally restructures the face of it. Because it was such a huge update that influenced the user experience and design of it all, there is always expected pushback, particularly from longstanding users who have become accustomed to a certain usability.

However, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel says the flak only bolsters what they’re about:

“We’re excited about what we’re seeing so far. Even the complaints we’re seeing reinforce the philosophy. The frustrations we’re seeing really validate those changes.”

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How This Works

Welcome to Alexandra Works.

Hopefully, this blog will not become my own personal indulgence, but I may ask for time to time for you to indulge in my prose. There’s a few things this blog will cover, since my interests range wildly as most others’.

I’m Alexandra. I’m a former journalist from Memphis, Tennessee. In my current job, I now do far more web and analytics work than actual journalism, but you can see my resume for yourself. The short version is I moved to San Francisco in the summer of 2017, and in the process, I wrote a goodbye love letter to Memphis. Since being here, I’ve realized that I’d like to help more journalists understand the Internet.

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