This page will tell you about the volunteer jobs that Mormon News needs done to produce its news summaries, and headlines.
How Mormon-news works
To produce Mormon-news, four basic jobs need to be performed. Some of these jobs can take as few as 5 or 10 minutes a week, while others may take 30 minutes each day. We appreciate any help that you feel you can give.
Of course, Mormon news accepts submissions from anyone, and in a sense, everyone is a Correspondent for Mormon-news because anyone can send in a news item they see or write about a Mormon event that they attended.
First, Mormon news gets its news items from Searchers, people that regularly search publications for news items that fit our editorial guidelines.
These items are passed to Summarizers, who write two or three paragraph summaries of the most important of the news items.
Headline editors accumulate the articles on a particular subject, and put together a the list of headlines on that subject each week.
And finally, Editors control which items are summarized and sent immediately to the list, and which items are included only in headline lists.
Below are detailed descriptions of each of these jobs, along with an estimate of the amount of time that each could take.
Everyone that wants to send in a news item is a correspondent for Mormon-news. Correspondents can send in several types of items:
- Articles published in any newspaper, magazine, on-line service, or other publication, regardless of language or type of source. These articles should fit our editorial guidelines.
- Any account that they have written of a current Mormon event that they witnessed.
- Any upcoming event that they would like to announce.Events should involved at least more than one Stake or District.
Anyone can be a searcher just by talking with the editor about the amount of time they have available and what publications they have access to or the Mormon-related subjects they are interested in. The reason for talking with the editor is to avoid two people searching the same publication or subject and to make sure that the searcher has enough time available to search as often as necessary. The editor also has a number of search tips.
In addition to searching particular publications, searchers can take on the following subjects (or another subject that they are interested in):
- General Authorities
- BYU or Ricks
- Church Finance or Legal News
- Church History
- Arts & Entertainment
- Other Mormon Churches (i.e., RLDS Church, etc.)
- Particular Mormon Groups (i.e., Evergreen, Sunstone, FARMS, etc.)
Searchers committ to making sure that Mormon-news knows about articles on a timely basis. It can take as little as 10 minuites each week or as much as 30 minutes every day, depending on what publications are searched and how often searches are necessary.
Searchers forward the full text of the articles they find to the editor so that the article can either be summarized or included in the headlines.
Mormon-news especially needs searchers that reside in Europe and in the Eastern U.S., or that have access to news databases.
Summarizers can also spend as little as 10 or 15 minutes per week or as much as 30 minuites per day. Summarizers let the editor know how many articles they can summarize each week, and how quickly they can return a summary after they were given the text.
The editor then sends articles to the summarizer as they have been found. The summarizer simply writes a summary of the news article and sends it back to the editor, who will send it out to the list.
Headline editors simply accumulate news articles and produce a weekly list of all the articles on a subject, along with a sentence describing the article if the title doesn't make the subject of the article clear.
Anyone interested in being a headline editor should contact the editor to make arrangements.
Currently, Mormon-news has just one editor. At some point, we will get additional editors, probably from those that have volunteered in other areas.
Mormon-news tries to carry all news items about Mormon and Mormonism. This is very broadly interpreted, and includes important news items about other Churches that believe in the restoration of the Gospel by Joseph Smith, news items about Mormons, and even some news that simply mentions the Church or Mormons in passing.
However, there are some things that are not acceptable:
- News about political or social beliefs that Mormons share, but are not about Mormons or Mormonism.
- Events involving a single ward, branch, stake or district and that were not published elsewhere.
- News about individuals that were not published elsewhere. In addition:
- No vital statistics (i.e., no births, marriages or deaths). Obituaries are permitted if the person had major accomplishments, such as serving in a Church position above the stake or district level.
- No career changes, unless it involves the top 1% of a profession.
- No appeals for money (unless a charitable appeal that has been published elsewhere).
Items submitted to Mormon-news should be formatted as follows:
In the subject line of the email message, first put the city, state and name of the publication followed by the date, followed by the title of the article. For example, an article from the Provo Daily Herald should have a subject like this:
Provo UT Daily Herald 15Jan98: Title of the article no matter how long it is
This will help the editor recognize what the message is without opening it, and allow the message to be filtered easily.
Then in the body of the message put the URL of the article (if you found the article on the Internet) and the text of the article.
If the article is on the Internet and you are using Netscape or Internet Explorer, you can simply choose the Send Page command from the File menu to send the article, changing the subject line to fit the format.
If the article is not on the Internet, please either type the article in or cut and paste it into an email message.
If the full text of the article is not available, please at least send us a reference and a short summary.
Remember, send any news items to: mormon-news@MormonsToday.com!
Questions? Email me at: KLarsen@MormonsToday.com