By Dave Lieber
Dallas Morning News columnist
Take this quick digital skills test and see how well prepared you, the columnist, are to serve your audience as a digital journalist in the 21st century.
Ready to begin? Give yourself two points for every YES answer.
- Do you have your own website?
- Do you control it, meaning, can you post on it and update it without a webmaster helping you?
- Can you add art and photos to your website?
- Do you use subheads on stories you post?
- Can you insert hyperlinks?
- Can you insert documents (using Scribd or other document clouds)?
- Do you know how to embed video in a blog post?
- Can you write short, SEO-friendly headlines?
- Do you know how to write summaries of your stories for aggregation in the required number of characters?
- Can you post on a smart phone or tablet?
- Can you use Google Analytics or another site to show you how many visitors you get and what keywords your audience is using to find you?
- Have you posted a video of any kind about what you do in the past year on social media?
Perfect score is 24 points.
If you scored 20 or higher you’re in amazing shape.
If you scored between 10-18, you’re on the right track but need to go through the list and see what you need to know.
If you scored 8 or less, you probably don’t give a darn about any of this, and I’m kind of surprised you got this far. Good luck and enjoy your coming retirement.
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This piece first was published in the November 2015 issue of The Columnist, the monthly membership newsletter of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists.