Using Google Maps in journalism

The thing I really love about web journalism is the fact you have all these tools to play with to create a really interactive form of journalism. Don’t get me wrong: I love a physical newspaper, but the things you can do online give it a whole new dimension. For some people, it’s unnecessary embellishment… but if you really want to be a journalist, you’ll have an interest in technology and playing with programs to make a story more interesting.

I really like the way The Argus uses maps – this Olympic torch route from 2012, for example, wasn’t just gratuitous. Lots of people wanted to know where they could go to see the torch, and a map is a far more sensible way to share that than a written list of roads.

I don’t have any news to report as such, so I’ve been playing with the map above to create something showing some of my favourite places in Brighton. It’s the place I know best and it might come in handy if anyone wants any insider knowledge! Obviously it isn’t news, but it is a document of my life in this city, and it was incredibly easy to make.

What do you think of the use of maps and similar interactive features in journalism?

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