CAMP 2016: Using Google to up your digital game

JAWS CAMP 2016 l
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Victoria “Vix” Reitano teaches journalists how to use Google’s tools at JAWS CAMP in Roanoke, Va.

Story and photo by Olivia Smith, 2016 JAWS Fellow

Google is much more than a search engine: It can help journalists in many ways, according to Victoria “Vix” Reitano, who taught a workshop on Google tools at JAWS CAMP in Roanoke this weekend. Vix dived deeper into what Google can offer in terms of searching, writing and gathering information.

Advanced Search
Google aims to understand what you mean and give you what you want, according to Vix. Using advanced search can help you:

  • Search by file type (i.e., PDF)
  • Search within a domain
  • Search a related URL (“Related:vogue.com,” for example, will deliver related sites like style.com)
  • Search social media (allows you to search hashtags and content on Twitter)
  • Search refinements (“tax returns 2016 + trump” gives you much more specific results)
  • Search within a site (“olympics site:nbc.com”)
  • Search site and a file type (“site: info.com flietype:doc injuries”)
  • Search public data (“unemployment rate germany”)

Trends
Vix said that when Prince died, Google Trends curated all of the content around the announcement of his death. You can also follow @googletrends on Twitter.

Google Docs
You can share a Word document between multiple users, including tracking changes and commenting.

Consumer Surveys
You can create surveys.

Graphics
You can find maps, imagery and additional resources for both. You can now pull photos from old Google maps to compare a street from 2007 to 2014, for example. Check out the embeddable maps. Use photo spheres to create custom 360-degree panoramas (only for use on mobile phones or with a 360 device). You can sign up for a mailing list to get fresh imagery.

Other resources: Google News, Chrome and more tutorials.