To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Changed spatial configurations at sowing have been investigated as a strategy to minimize interspecific competition and improve the establishment and persistence of multi-species plantings in pastures, but the impact of this practice on the soil microbiome has received almost no previous research attention. Differences in populations of bacteria and fungi in the surface 10 cm of soil in the third year following pasture establishment were quantified using quantitative polymerase chain reaction and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism methods. Populations were compared on, and between, drill rows sown to either the perennial grass phalaris (Phalaris aquatica L.), perennial legume lucerne (alfalfa; Medicago sativa L.) or the annual legume subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L.). Results showed that soil microbial abundance and diversity were related to plant distribution across the field at the time of sampling and to soil chemical parameters including total carbon (C), mineral nitrogen (N), pH, and available phosphorus (P), potassium (K) and sulfur (S). Despite the 27-month lag since sowing, pasture species remained concentrated around the original drill row with very little colonization of the inter-row area. The abundance and diversity of bacterial and fungal populations were consistently greater under drill rows associated with higher total C concentrations in the surface soil compared with the inter-row areas. Our results showed that the pH and available nutrients were similar between the subterranean clover drill row and the inter-row, suggesting that soil microbial populations were not impacted directly by these soil fertility parameters, but rather were related to the presence or absence of plants. The abundance of bacteria and fungi were numerically lower under phalaris rows compared to rows sown to legumes. The richness and diversity of fungal populations were lowest between rows where lucerne was planted. Possible explanations for this observation include a lower C:N ratio of lucerne roots and/or a lack of fibrous roots at the soil surface compared to the other species, illustrating the influence of contrasting plant types on the soil microflora community. This study highlights the enduring legacy of the drill row on the spatial distribution of plants well into the pasture phase of a cropping rotation and discusses the opportunity to enhance the microbiome of cropping soils on a large scale during the pasture phase by increasing plant distribution across the landscape.
Externalizing disorders are known to be partly heritable, but the biological pathways linking genetic risk to the manifestation of these costly behaviors remain under investigation. This study sought to identify neural phenotypes associated with genomic vulnerability for externalizing disorders.
One-hundred fifty-five White, non-Hispanic veterans were genotyped using a genome-wide array and underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Genetic susceptibility was assessed using an independently developed polygenic score (PS) for externalizing, and functional neural networks were identified using graph theory based network analysis. Tasks of inhibitory control and psychiatric diagnosis (alcohol/substance use disorders) were used to measure externalizing phenotypes.
A polygenic externalizing disorder score (PS) predicted connectivity in a brain circuit (10 nodes, nine links) centered on left amygdala that included several cortical [bilateral inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) pars triangularis, left rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC)] and subcortical (bilateral amygdala, hippocampus, and striatum) regions. Directional analyses revealed that bilateral amygdala influenced left prefrontal cortex (IFG) in participants scoring higher on the externalizing PS, whereas the opposite direction of influence was observed for those scoring lower on the PS. Polygenic variation was also associated with higher Participation Coefficient for bilateral amygdala and left rACC, suggesting that genes related to externalizing modulated the extent to which these nodes functioned as communication hubs.
Findings suggest that externalizing polygenic risk is associated with disrupted connectivity in a neural network implicated in emotion regulation, impulse control, and reinforcement learning. Results provide evidence that this network represents a genetically associated neurobiological vulnerability for externalizing disorders.
Surface sediments (n=85) from a 160-km river-estuarine transect of the Clyde, UK, were analysed for total mercury (Hg), saturated hydrocarbons and unresolved complex mixtures (UCMs) of hydrocarbons. Results show that sediment-Hg concentration ranges from 0.01 to 1.38mgkg–1 (mean 0.20mgkg–1) and a spatial trend in Hg-content low–high–low–high, from freshwater source, to Glasgow, to estuary, is evident. In summary, sediment-Hg content is low in the upper Clyde (mean of 0.05Hg mgkg–1), whereas sediments from the Clyde in urbanised Glasgow have higher Hg concentrations (0.04 to 1.26mgkg–1; mean 0.45mgkg–1), and the inner estuary sediments contain less Hg (mean 0.06mgkg–1). The highest mean sediment Hg (0.65mgkg–1) found in the outer estuary is attributed to historical anthropogenic activities. A significant positive Spearman correlation between Hg and total organic carbon is observed throughout the river estuary (0.86; P<0.001). Comparison with Marine Scotland guidelines suggests that no sites exceed the 1.5mgkg–1 criterion (Action Level 2); 22 fall between 0.25 and 1.5mgkg–1 dry wt. (Action Level 1) and 63 are of no immediate concern (<0.25mgkg–1 dry wt.). Saturated (n-alkane) hydrocarbons in the upper Clyde are of natural terrestrial origin. By contrast, the urbanised Glasgow reaches and outer estuary are characterised by pronounced and potentially toxic UCM concentrations in sediments (380–914mg/kg and 103–247mgkg–1, respectively), suggesting anthropogenic inputs such as biodegraded crude oil, sewage discharge and/or urban run-off.
The ability of plants to colonize new habitats is influenced by their dependence on effective pollinators. This can be very important for plants that require specialized pollinators, especially when they disperse to islands that have low pollinator diversity. One form of specialization involves plants that require buzz-pollination, where bees must vibrate poricidal anthers at frequencies that allow pollen to be released. Pollen larceny is a phenomenon where insects ‘steal’ pollen from flowers which usually results in reduced pollination, but in some cases there can be a small contribution to pollination. Here we report pollen larceny in an endemic Fijian halictine bee Homalictus fijiensis that steals pollen by chewing anthers of the invasive weed Solanum torvum, which is a pollen-only plant requiring buzz pollination. In over nine hours of observations at six sites where H. fijiensis visited S. torvum, it never attempted to locate nectaries, it never buzzed anthers, and instead chewed anther tips, indicating an adaptation to exploit nectarless flowers with poricidal anthers without buzz-pollination. Analyses of 30 pollen loads from H. fijiensis collected from S. torvum flowers indicate 27 of these contained S. torvum pollen, ranging from 1% to 99% of total pollen, indicating it is a pollen vector for this plant. Our findings support arguments that super-generalist pollinators in island ecosystems can promote the spread of invasive plants, but go further by indicating that super-generalist strategies can extend to plants with highly specialized pollinator requirements.
A field experiment was established to test the impact on crop yield, total productivity and biological di-nitrogen (N2) fixation of a self-regenerating annual legume, subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L.), grown in mixtures with experimental perennial wheat lines. Legume content was altered in one intermediate wheatgrass (Thinopyrum intermedium (Host) Barkworth & Dewey) and two wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) × wheatgrass (Th. spp.) hybrid-based stands by sowing the legume in the same drill row as the perennial crop, or in every second or third row, spatially separated from the perennial crop. The hybrid perennial crops were more vigorous than intermediate wheatgrass in year 1, competing strongly and reducing legume biomass over the 2 yr period leading to reduced inputs of fixed nitrogen (N). However, both hybrid crops declined to negligible levels following the first summer with only the intermediate wheatgrass persisting in adequate densities in year 2. Spatially separating the perennial crop from the legume in alternate drill rows increased legume biomass by 32–128% and clover regeneration by 31–195%, and reduced weed incursion by up to 47% compared with where it was sown in mixed rows. However, spatial separation more than halved grain yields in year 2 compared with where the perennial crop was grown in every drill row. This likely reflected changed competition dynamics where the modified spatial configurations at sowing limited the perennial crops’ access to resources. When estimates of the total inputs of fixed N from the clover (5–165 kg N ha−1 in year 2) were compared with the amounts of N removed in grain by the different perennial wheat treatments (10–55 kg N ha−1 in year 1), it appears feasible that a companion legume could fix sufficient N to maintain the N balance of a cropping system producing 1.5–2.0 t grain ha−1 each year. The inclusion of a legume increased total above-ground biomass by up to 142%, particularly in year 2, but this did not translate into increased grain yields. It seems unlikely that a self-regenerating annual legume will be able to effectively coexist among a dense perennial wheat canopy where both species are sown in the same drill row. Further research is required to develop strategies to channel more of the additional resources apparently accessed by the companion legume into grain production.
After reading this chapter, you should understand the following:
How and why journalists, as ‘knowledge workers’, share much in common with librarians, and should learn from librarians when seeking, sieving and processing raw ‘information’ into knowledge published as stories
How to strengthen and engage your critical faculties to ‘sift’ and ‘sort’ useful information from rubbish
How to start using social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook for journalism
How to conduct both online and offline searches that go beyond simply ‘Googling’ something
What entry points exist to help you venture into the ‘deep’ or ‘hidden’ web
… the unvarnished truth is that journalists do not happen by chance upon the news which is daily gathered together for public edification. It has to be anticipated, prepared for, and followed up, and the greatest virtue of all in a newsman is anticipation. That is what is really meant by the phrase ‘a nose for news’.
Carr & Stevens, Modern Journalism (1931)
Doing research for journalism usually involves using a combination of research skills, so unpacking them here is somewhat artificial. Much of what is described or suggested here might take seconds, or could develop into a major investigation taking days or even months. Throughout, however, it is vital to remember that you are a journalist and your core business is stories. This chapter introduces the research process upon which all good journalism relies. As information or ‘knowledge’ workers, journalists need a high level of information literacy.
News does not just fall into the lap of a journalist. This is true despite the endless tsunami of media announcements, press releases and tip-offs that pour into the newsroom every day. As the writers of Modern Journalism expressed it in 1931, most of this material is not really news at all; it is
‘too trivial in content to be so dignified’. A good reporter and a competent editor will know that all the information must be sifted, sorted and given an angle before it can become news; it has to be important or interesting – or preferably both: ‘News may be important without being interesting, and the converse applies,’ Modern Journalism tell us, but without our ability to know whether it is either, we will not know news even if it is right under our noses.
Together with the next three chapters (on defamation, ethics and professionalism), this chapter will introduce you to the following:
The social, legal and ethical contexts in which journalists operate on a daily basis
How the legal system interacts with and impacts on journalism and the news
Common law as it applies to the work of journalists
How to deal with the court system
How to recognise and avoid contempt of court
We cannot go past the law, so it is important for you to understand the legal implications in any relationship between journalists and the people with whom they deal during the course of their work. This chapter is an introduction only; the law is complex, and so is the world of journalism and news. We recommend that you read a good book on journalism and law relevant to where you are going to work.
You can’t plead ignorance
Ignorance of the law does not excuse a person from criminal responsibility for an act that would otherwise be an offence …
Queensland Criminal Code, s 48(1)
Words similar to those in Queensland’s Criminal Code operate or prevail in all jurisdictions. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. If it were, everyone could claim they didn’t know what they did was wrong and there would be no need for courts. It would probably be a pretty wild – even dangerous – place out there. Relying on what others say the law is – even those who should know – is no defence either. What this illustrates for the journalist, and everyone else, is simple: to do a professional job as a journalist, you have to know the law. And there is a great deal to know.
After reading this chapter, you should be confident about the following:
You know what defamation is – and understand the law
You can recognise defamatory statements and know why they are injurious to reputation
You know how to check to see if a defence makes publication possible
You know when you are protected by privilege and to what extent
Every journalist needs to understand the issues around defamation. The purpose must be to ‘get away with’ as much as possible – to use the law and the defences to defamation as a tool to publish, not as a brake on the flow of information that is in the public interest. This chapter is not a substitute for detailed study of the laws of defamation; it is a guide to keeping you (and your publication) out of trouble.
Reputation damage: A costly legal business
My initial response was to sue her for defamation of character, but then I realized that I had no character.
The basketball player Charles Barkley could dunk the ball and dribble; he also has a good sense of humour. Defamation laws protect people’s reputation – their good name (assuming they have one, of course). Wrongly harming or damaging a person’s reputation can be a serious problem too. What all this means is that while it may be possible to publish all kinds of material before the ‘course of justice’ has commenced or after it has concluded, and not be found to be in contempt, what you publish could still be defamatory. And someone may sue you. So even when there is no ‘course of justice’ running, you still need to be careful about the things you publish.
This chapter explores some issues about which beginning reporters might have questions, such as:
Whether journalism has a future in the age of user-generated content
Whether journalism is still essential to democracy
What kind of journalist you want to be
After reading the chapter, you should not only have a better idea about whether you want to be a journalist, you should also have a greater understanding of what it will take to succeed. Don’t be too worried if you find that you don’t want to be a reporter; everything you learn in a journalism course at university will provide you with valuable and transferable skills that are applicable in many professions and work situations.
In journalism, the ‘ism’ is more important than the ‘ist’. Journalism is a collection of practices that can be done by anyone – not just by a select few anointed by certain types of employers or degrees.
One of the most confusing questions we get asked most days is: What does it mean to be a journalist today? Is journalism just ‘a collection of practices that can be done by anyone’? Even 10 years ago, this was not really a question; the ‘news 2.0’ tsunami had not really hit the newsroom yet, and journalism was something that journalists did on behalf of everyone else. There was the journalist inside the news organisation and the audience outside. But then a whole new DIY style began to emerge. It had its powerful moment of creation during protests against the ‘new world order’ in Seattle in 1999. Anti-capitalist protestors wanted to demonstrate at the World Trade Organization (WTO) summit, and they also felt that their message would not be reported accurately (if at all) by the mainstream media. So, instead of relying on the mainstream media, the activists decided to create their own global media: the Indymedia movement was born. In the decade since, we have seen the rise of so-called ‘citizen journalism’ and do-it-yourself broadcasting in the form of YouTube, blogs and now Twitter.
News organisations want more from their reporters than just an ability to write news stories. They want people who can also write well– to satisfy those who want more from their news outlet than just the news. This chapter is about introducing some style and flair into your writing. This is not a licence to go ‘crazy’ and come over all ‘experimental’, but it is a form of permission to flex your writing muscle and exercise your imagination.
Writing well is not just writing
Good writing is all but invisible. You know it’s there only because what you are reading or hearing has a flow, a rhythm and a beat that make you want more. It holds your attention, but without drawing attention to itself. It is an artform. According to research findings presented a few years ago at an annual Journalism Education Association conference, both print and electronic media recruiters said they prized journalism graduates who could write well over those with a command of technology (Nankervis, 2005 ). Other research into the journalism job market also suggests that editors want reporters who can write for several media platforms and also for the time-rich reader – this is in line with international studies too.
This chapter will teach you the following skills and introduce the following issues:
How to write news copy clearly using the inverted pyramid style
How to integrate the news questions into your writing plan
Why news stories have a logical flow and structure
The importance of substance over style
Now you have begun to learn news-gathering skills, it is time to begin blending these with some writing practice. Along the way, we talk about words, illustrations, audio and video – each an important addition to your journalistic toolkit. But for now, it is words that matter most. In any form, journalism means clear writing. In a simple news story, this is to help the reader get the ‘news’ quickly and accurately. In a feature story, it means a narrative style that is engaging, enlightening and entertaining. For radio, good writing means painting a scene with words and sound effects (SFx), good intros and tight, flowing scripts. Television news and current affairs is about writing ‘to’ or ‘with’ the pictures. TV news editors often tell young reporters: ‘Don’t tell the news, show it.’ Even so, the script must convey information that the pictures don’t have. New styles of writing are emerging on the internet. Formats vary from the straight ‘inverted pyramid’ hard news brief to the newsblog and opinion, and all shades in between.
Provide an understanding of some basic issues of professionalism that all reporters and those in the news industry – or even savvy consumers of news – should be talking about
Open up a more intellectual discussion of what journalism is and who journalists are
Show that professionalism also includes behaving within the norms of the law and assessing what is and what is not ethical behaviour for a journalist (as discussed in previous chapters)
What does it mean to be professional?
Journalists of all schools of thought hold the theory that, like a poet, a journalist is born, not made. There is a certain amount of truth in this theory, but the scope of newspaper activity has been so widened by the march of events and the spread of education that real success in the profession can only be attained by a close study and a clear understanding of its technique.
H.A. Gwynne, in Carr & Stevens, Modern Journalism (1931)
This statement, in the Foreword to Modern Journalism, is perhaps the first articulation of how the profession of journalism was born (or, if you like, made). But the sub-title used by the authors in this 1931 edition was ‘A Complete Guide to the Newspaper Craft’. Throughout the twentieth century, journalism slowly made the transition from craft to trade to profession, and the education of young reporters – both inside and outside the newsroom – was a major factor in that change. Even in 1931, the English reporter was being exhorted to ‘respect his [sic.] profession’ and to ‘regard himself as a trustee for English language’. H.A. Gwynne wrote that these two principles were ‘the foundations of journalism’.
After reading this chapter, you should have a greater understanding of the following issues:
The similarities and differences between various news styles and formats
The relationships between text and multimedia elements in unplugged journalism
How technologies and the way we use them also shape writing and thinking about news
How writing news for the web and for online/mobile applications differs from print and broadcast writing
Why multimedia is important for online and mobile news applications
The continuing importance of the fundamentals of good and ethical reporting in online news
This chapter is about taking everything you know about journalism and news-writing and applying it to online media. It’s a racing certainty that you are familiar with the online world: the explosion of online, multimedia and mobile journalism in recent years has meant that this area of knowledge has expanded rapidly, and continues to do so. The best way to keep up is by following online debates and social media forums where these issues are being talked about. This chapter aims to introduce a newsy perspective to your online interaction.