16.5 Journalism: Narrow Focus / Brainstorm Ideas

Your broad topic of interest is “drones” – but what angle on this should you take? Given your knowledge of the Atlantic’s audience, how do you start to zero in on potential ways to focus the topic?

Questions to clarify topic focus:

  • What, if anything, has the Atlantic already written about drones?

Search the Atlantic’s website. Scanning through the articles retrieved (what is a good search strategy?) will give you some ideas of things they have covered – and help you find some different angles.

  • What are some of the angles on the topic of drones that others are writing about?

Do a quick check on Google News – scanning the headlines might give you insights on a new angle. And you’d want to stay up to speed on the topic, so set several Google Alerts on different aspects of the topic (drones and legislation, drones and public safety, drones and shopping)

  • What are people saying about drones? What are their issues or concerns?

Social media sites are a great way to see new and emerging topics of discussion or concern. Go to Facebook and see if there is an interest group – and who is talking about it. Follow a Twitter hashtag (like #drone or #dronesforgood)