List: general multimedia tools

This list is curated specifically for the News Reporting Workshop. All of these tools were chosen to meet the following requirements:

An important point to remember: multimedia takes time to produce. For any project, you must give yourself enough time to pick a tool, learn it, craft your multimedia element, fail at it and try again, refine it, then make sure it works in the piece. Don’t expect to whip up excellence right before your deadline.

Maps (when geography/location is important)

Examples IRL: America’s graying population in 3 maps (Datawrapper), Are pads and tampons taxed but Viagra and Rogaine not? (Infogram)

Reading: Does your data visualization say what you think it says? 

Charts (when you have numbers/stats)

Examples IRL:  An inconvenient quagmire (Datawrapper), River level predictions: How they stacked up with reality (Infogram)

Readings: Designing persuasive charts (video), Visual vocabulary from FT, How to choose the right visualization for your data, Choosing a good chart

Timelines (when you want to show a chronology)

Example IRL: The original old boys club (TimelineJS), The full timeline of how social media turned United into the biggest story in the country (no particular tool at all!)

Photos (when you have one key image or more to highlight)

Video, GIFs and screen grabs


Example IRL: Guelph Mercury closes (SoundCloud)

Infographics/presentations (for showing a workflow, list, explainer, etc.)

Examples IRL: Brexit: What happens now?, Actions speak louder than words, Swearing, by the stylebook (Easelly)

Reading: Designing Effective Infographics

Other tools and tips

Maybe you use other tools. Maybe you’ve come across something cool in your Google searches. Feel free to use it, but just make sure it gets the job done.

Here are a few other lists and resources to explore: Jeremy Caplan’s list, Journalist’s Toolbox, Product Hunt

Last Updated: October 22, 2019, 3:47 pm ADT