Five Morning Links

Five worthwhile reads to start your day.

Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

Does anyone else miss coffee shops? I do. I really miss coffee shops. For much of the last seven years, one of my very favourite things was heading to my local coffee shop after dropping my daughter(s) at nursery, and spending the first working hour of the day catching up on a mix of email and reading over a black americano.

I miss that.

Grabbing a takeaway and doing the same on the iPad by the river has some appeal, but it's not the same.

Anyway, grab a hot beverage of your choice, and a comfy chair somewhere at home, put on some coffee shop sounds and enjoy this quick selection of links.

Let's stop it with the crowded beach stories

One of the default Covid-19 stories has become the "crowded beach" story, as people deprived of foreign holidays crowd onto popular beaches. But there's two problems with these stories: they mis-represent the risk, and distracts from more serious issues.

Scolding Beachgoers Isn’t Helping
People complain that going to the shore is a careless act during a pandemic, but the science so far suggests otherwise.

Nasty people like social media

This should surprise precisely no-one, but at least there's research to back it up now.

People who like embarrassing or angering others find social media more addictive, study says
Cruel and callous? You’ll love social media.

Why the semicolon is cool

It is. Really. Here's a really good example of why.

What helped Ed Yong write the sentence of the year? - Poynter
Make that the semicolon! It’s a maligned mark in the journalism world but it enabled the Atlantic reporter to build a breathtaking 212-word sentence.

👏 Headline of the day

Hats off to the sub who came up with this.

China: We Will Not Allow the US to Seize the Memes of Production
Chinese state media has responded to Donald Trump’s decision that he’s the president of TikTok now, accusing him of stealing. Reuters quoted the state-backed paper China Daily, in which the editorial board wrote that China won’t tolerate Donald Trump’s “bullying” and outright “theft” of TikTok, and …

The "angle" and the risk of creating accidental misinformation

The Covid-19 pandemic is throwing up all sorts of structural weaknesses in the way we report. Here's a really specific example of how a journalist has chosen to frame some reporting — probably for attention reasons — could have some serious consequences.

(This is the sort of post that traditionally gets me into trouble, but has met with general approval, much to my surprise.)

Covid-19, schools, and the dangers of unintentional misinformation
Not all misinformation is intentional. Sometimes the angel we take on a story, and the headline we use, can leave completely the wrong impression in areader’s mind.

Enjoy your day folks. I'm off on Daddy duty…

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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.