Karissa Donkin’s Media Diary

Posted: January 19, 2011 by Karissa Donkin in #1 Media Diary

Like most days, my news day on Monday started before I was conscious. I wake up each morning to CBC radio and my iPod alternating back and forth. Admittedly, much of what I hear on CBC Radio in the mornings isn’t absorbed very well, but it’s the first thing that enters into my brain.

Most days, the first thing I do is grab my cell phone, check my messages and read my Twitter feed, throwing myself into words in an attempt to wake up my brain. Twitter is one of my main news sources. I keep a list of all of my favourite news websites/outlets’ feeds that I check throughout the day.

But Monday was different from my usual routine. I overslept and woke up 15 minutes before a 9:45 a.m. phone interview I scheduled the day before. Checking Twitter would have to wait.

After my interview, I caught up on the latest buzz around Twitter. I subscribe to a list of “tweeps” from Saint John and refreshed myself with what was going on that day in my hometown without even getting out of bed! Before heading to class at 11:30, I would do another interview, check Twitter again and read most of the City section of the Telegraph-Journal. Working at the TJ this summer trained me to read at the entire City section and most of the front section every day, but I know most of what’s in the paper on Monday is old news so I skim a lot of the paper on Mondays.

I would also read a particularly disturbing story on the Globe and Mail’s website. A Toronto woman who suffered from dementia wandered away from her home and froze to death outside on the coldest night of the year. She screamed, notifying neighbours of her anguish – but no one cared to help her. It’s stories like this that remind me why I’m doing this in the first place – and why I haul my body out of bed at 9:30 a.m. in the name of journalism.

Throughout my school day, I check Twitter and Facebook, occasionally bookmarking stories for later. Monday was no different in this respect. I have an app on my phone called Canadian Newspapers which spoon feeds me stories from the Toronto Star, CBC, Globe and Mail, National Post, etc., and when killing time before classes begin, I’ll often read bits and pieces of stories. I did another interview in a gap between classes and finished the school day in print class. It was around this time that I came across this piece, which is currently on my read later list. I came across the story on the author’s Twitter feed.

If I’ve missed the nightly news, which I did on Monday, I usually take some time each evening to read through CBC NB’s page. But other than CBC NB and the consistent often (maybe obsessive?) Twitter checks, I’m not as hungry for news at night as I am during the day.

I feel like I don’t read enough non-news “tree books” and have resolved to do more of that this year. I tried to finish my day curled up with a “tree book” but the words jumbled together on the page and I eventually gave into sleep.

Author’s note – I didn’t include Facebook in this diary out of shame for the number of times I probably checked it on Monday. Let’s just say it’s a big part of my media/social networking diet each day…


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