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“100 Watts”: Tricks and Basics of Searching

August 16, 2021

Amman- 11 August 2021

The 8th webinar of the “100 Watts” project addressed the basics of searching and provided guidelines to improve the quality of searching online.

“100 Watts” is a three-year project launched by ARIJ and supported by the Embassy of Netherlands in Jordan. The project aims at training more than 100 journalists, content creators, journalism and media students, and professors on audio storytelling “Podcast”, to address vital societal issues in Jordan and promote accountability and reform.

The session, held on 11 August 2021, hosted ARIJ communications manager, Samya Ayish, and was moderated by journalist and trainer, Firas Al-Taweel.

At the beginning  of the session, Ayish indicated that searching is a systematic process that starts with selecting the right keywords. She recommended that journalists should put themselves in the shoes of the author of the article when choosing keywords for their online search, to achieve better results.

Ayish explained how search engines work and reviewed some of the search enhancement tools which can narrow down the results of the searching process, making it easier for the journalist to find information. She provided many examples. For instance, the researcher can exclude specific words from search results using a hyphen “-” followed by the word, or can use quotation marks with the phrase to find the exact match. Ayish also focused on the methods used for searching for documents, images and videos and elaborated on how to use filters to get better results.

Responding to a question on intellectual property on the web, ARIJ communications manager argued that it is difficult to maintain intellectual property in the open cyberspace. Ayish indicated that the responsibility of protecting intellectual property falls on the individuals and the institutions. She advised journalists to acquaint themselves with intellectual property rights and the strict rules regulating them.

At the end of the session, Ayish shed light on some alternative search engines for more specialised research. She also gave tips on how to benefit from Google built in tools such as Google Alerts.