Lokaljournalismus aus der Ferne 1
The editors of the Annenpost are currently working from home. Photo: Barbara Veit

Local journalism from afar

Elisabeth Michalek, Anna-Lena Müller and Barbara Veit,

37 journalists in 37 different places – the current editorial department of the Annenpost. How do the students of JPR20 handle a weblog during the pandemic? Here is how they do it.

Since November 2020 the editors of the Annenpost have had to handle the editorial duties and the communication fully online, due to the covid-19 regulations. After only knowing each other for five weeks, the students of JPR20 of the Bachelor's degree programme Journalism and Public Relations (PR) faced a massive change in communicating and organizing an entire weblog, since the universities were shut down.
The Annenpost is a weblog about news, different personalities, cultures and the district-life in Eggenberg, Lend and Gries, called the “Annenviertel”.

In the first week of the semester the new editors were thrown in at the deep end at the Annenpost Bootcamp led by Thomas Wolkinger, which was the fundamental basis of working together in more difficult times and getting to know the hood. The shutdown of the FH JOANNEUM in November was the reason for numerous students going back to their hometowns and the beginning of working online. They figured out different methods to still report about the Annenviertel.

Many students, like Anna-Lena and Lena, worked together on an article, even though they were hundreds of kilometers apart. Essential communication tools for them were Zoom, WhatsApp and the good old mobile phone – without them it would not have been possible to work.
However, the coverage of ongoing events did not fall by the wayside. Elisabeth, for example, spontaneously reported about a demonstration happening in Graz during the lockdown. To have one’s finger on the pulse of time, the article had to be finished very quickly, which was only possible because of the good teamwork within the students and Thomas Wolkinger.

Talking about teamwork, regular online meetings, discussions via WhatsApp and organizational duties such as having an eye on the collaboration-calendar are on the agenda of the editors-in-chief, consisting of four JPR20 students. Furthermore, possible news content is sent to the other students as article recommendations. One can say that the Annenpost editors give their best in challenging times, but also look forward to meeting in a real room rather than a chatroom.

Elisabeth Michalek, Anna-Lena Müller and Barbara Veit are students of JPR20 of the Bachelor's degree programme Journalismus und Public Relations (PR).


Read more on working from afar and other stories in Annenpost: Lokaljournalismus im Homeoffice