Courtney Lowery Cowgill

Courtney Lowery Cowgill is a writer, editor, teacher and farmer. As an editor, she works as the managing editor of PBS MediaShift. As a teacher, she's an adjunct professor at the University of Montana School of Journalism, specializing in feature writing, legislative coverage, rural journalism and online journalism. Formerly, she was the editor in chief of the online magazine NewWest.Net, which she co-founded and before that, worked as a newswoman for the Associated Press. When she’s not writing or editing, she’s helping her husband wrangle 150 heritage turkeys, 30 acres of food, overgrown weeds or their young children.

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

Each quarter, the social sharing platform ShareThis releases a report that looks at the sharing landscape — data that the company says gives “insight into what, where and how consumers share online, which is not only a true indicator of interest and intent, but also a powerful way for publishers and advertisers to drive content [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

1. The (online) media’s shameful Malaysia Airlines coverage: Gawking at a foreign disaster (Nicholas Quah / Salon) 2. How Twitter confirmed the explosion in Harlem first (Ted Bailey, Dataminr / GigaOm) 3. New cash, new questions for Business Insider (Michael Wolff / USA Today) 4. Explaining what’s behind the sudden allure of explanatory journalism (John [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

Call it spring cleaning. A digital detox. Each year, even we, those of us who live, eat, sleep and breathe online, need a little break (perhaps especially us). Enter, the National Day of Unplugging — a reason for and a celebration of a ”technology Sabbath.” This year, the National Day of Unplugging, advocated by the group [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

The premise of a recent investigative report from the NPR Planet Money team is pretty old school actually — track a product from beginning to end. In this case, it was a T-shirt followed from a cotton farm in Mississippi to its final place on someone’s back, with a stop in tragedy-riddled Bangladesh in between. [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

The role of the author in today’s ever-shifting digital publishing landscape is a complicated one. The job doesn’t stop when the last chapter is written. For many, that’s actually when the bulk of the work begins. Even if you take the traditional big publisher route, the author is expected to carry a heavy promotional weight. [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

This month, throngs of fresh-eyed students are filing back onto campus (or logging in online), attempting to become journalists at a time when the very definition of a journalist is in constant flux. Those who teach tomorrow’s journalists have a monumental task ahead of them: Not only do they have to instruct and mentor these [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

If the banner ad isn’t dead, it’s certainly on life support. Once upon a time (actually, not so long ago), there was one way to advertise online: the almighty banner ad. But, the banner ad just didn’t do enough. It didn’t fully take advantage of the medium, it was hard to track, and it certainly [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

What we’re sharing on social media has become an important barometer of what we think is important — in the news, in our lives, in the world. Below is an interesting infographic put together by AddThis, which measures social interest, on what was worth sharing in 2012. For more year-end stories from MediaShift, check out [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

2012 was a big year in the world of digital media, one of IPOs, apps, the “social Olympics,” and one of the most cross-platform elections we’ve seen yet. Over the next two weeks, we’ll be looking at some of the big stories we’ve tracked on MediaShift, and we’ll hear from a few correspondents on what [...] more »

by Courtney Lowery Cowgill

There’s nothing like giving the gift of reading. And, it used to be that there was one means to that end: Buy a book at a bookstore, perhaps inscribe it, wrap it up and give it. But today, the gift of reading can mean so much more than a wrapped-up book. Today, the literary giver [...] more »