Moving on to the next chapter

A chapter completed.

Yesterday was probably the last day in which I will have my core Viewpoints staff from the 2016 Spring Semester all in one room. While some of them will remain with the college newspaper to continue what has been started, others will be moving on including myself. For all stories we have written for the newspaper, the stories we all have with each other as a staff, not only from this semester but from my entire time with the program, are the stories I will remember most. Dare I say, the highs and lows we shared together is a book that could write itself.
None of this would of been possible without my family, who have always supported me. Which is something I was never really able to appreciate to the fullest until I found my passion and career. If it wasn’t for their support, I would be lost. So to Joy (mom), Clarence (dad), Michelle (sister) and Jesse (brother) I say thank you.

To my Viewpoints family (which includes just about everyone I ever worked with), I say thank you. As much as many of you have claimed to have learned from me….I learned just as much if not more from many of you! Just writing this is making me think of the people I have worked with during my time at Viewpoints.
Whether I was the Editor-In-Chief or just a section editor, I strived to be the best leader that I could be and serve as that support system for you guys as you guys were for me whether you knew it or not.
Alexis, Matt, Valerie, Laura, Jim and Luis are just some of the many that have helped make my time at Viewpoints a memorable experience.

Obviously this is not the end of my journalism career, I am just getting started and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if I work with some of you again in the future.

In closing, stay true to your gimmick and never trifle.

Why Twitter’s character limit increase is a good thing

Twitter is reportedly entertaining the thought of increasing its character count limit per tweet from 140 to 10,000.

It sounded pretty crazy at first but after reading about it. There is a lot of positives that could make any Twitter user happy.

I will be the first to admit that I was against the idea because half the fun of Twitter is getting your point across in 140 characters. I also like the current limit restraints because it keeps you focused on what you are trying to say and eliminates extra information that I, as a reporter, would be tempted to fit into a single tweet. 

While it does sound fine and dandy, there are those heartbreaking moments  when you have something you want to post immediately only to find out you are one character over the 140 limit. Then you spend five minutes fumbling around to make it fit.

Usually I work around it but I really got to thinking about the whole concept of increasing the limit when I saw this tweet from Twitter’s co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey:


The way he went about that tweet really opened my eyes because I have seen several of my followers do the things he has mentioned before such as tweetstorms and the screenshot text post.

One thing that I find beneficial is that it will make tweets searchable, which in my eyes is definitely a plus. 

Think about it. You screenshot your long tweet, or rant for that matter, and post it. Clearly you want someone to see it but how can they if it is not something you can search. You are cutting yourself short.

So without knowing it, this may be a change we been asking for and just haven’t realized until now.

Not sure how many of you still use this but I am sure at one time or another if you been on Twitter long enough you used TwitLonger, the third party site that provides a link to your expanded tweet.

Well much like the increase to the direct message character limits, which is at 10,000 characters, the same could be coming to your public timeline but how will that come across the timeline visually.

While it sounds like this possible increase will not hurt the way tweets are currently viewed and displayed on your timeline, we can only cross our fingers and hope for the best.

Also, if they do go through with 10,000 character count tweets. Please Twitter, add an edit button. Yes, add an edit history display as well.

Do not be afraid to follow in the steps of Facebook on this one thing.

But the elephant in the room still remains. Why did they decided to make the huge jump from 140 to 10,000 in the first place?

Only time will tell but as far as how the 140 limit came about regarding SMS made sense and as someone who had to text message tweets at one time because I did not have a smart phone, I can appreciate and respect that decision.

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Rest in peace Ed Castro, former Redlands Daily Facts sports writer

July 15, 2015

A lot of this is new to me.

As I told one of my friends earlier today, it is tough as you get older, at least for me, because you begin to realize that the people you meet, know and interact with can be gone at any moment.

This afternoon I was informed about the passing of former Redlands Daily Facts and Los Angeles News Group sports writer Ed Castro.

Ed Castro interviewing a softball athlete. (Photo courtesy of @Softball4Life43)
Ed Castro interviewing a softball athlete. (Photo courtesy of @Softball4Life43)

It was quite shocking to hear.

I had the chance to cover a few games last season with Ed during the Redlands East Valley football season, which concluded with a CIF State Championship victory.

Since the day I met him at the REV vs. Redlands High football game, he was nice to me and was a supporter of everything that I did.

His support showed even after he was no longer with the company and he took it upon himself to reach out to me.

He wished me luck after he saw I had been doing the sports coverage in the city of Redlands for the Facts during this summer.

That brief but meaningful conversation will stay with me for quite sometime.

I will see you out on the field again my friend. Rest in peace.

>> Below is a short video shot by Ed, who went head-to-head with an Arrowhead Christian Academy football player running out of the tunnel prior to a game.

Thank you once again my friend for the good laugh and the kind words.


Viewpoints looks to new Editor-in-Chief

A Great Opportunity

Viewpoints Online

Posted: Feb. 17, 2015 | Written by James H. Williams

Photo courtesy of: Micah Escamila Photo courtesy of: Micah Escamila

It is an honor to be named the Editor-in-Chief for Riverside City College’s student newspaper Viewpoints.

I have several goals for this semester but my top priority is to deliver news to the students and staff on the campus with both our print edition of the newspaper and online in a variety of ways.

I hope to use the experience I have gained during my career and apply it toward meeting these goals with the talented staff I have obtained.

My experience includes working for the San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Cerritos College’s TalonMarks and the Downey Patriot among others.

Working for several of those media outlets, including Viewpoints, has lead to me working and meeting several different people. All of which have taught me a variety of different things. I want to…

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ESPN’s Stuart Scott passes away at 49, following battle with cancer

Written by James H. Williams - Jan. 4, 2015

This one hurts for me…

During my high school years, I can recall turning on the television and hearing the witty phrases of Stuart Scott on ESPN as he provided the highlights for the day in sports, but at the time I did not have a full understanding for what I was watching. 

Without realizing it, watching Scott among others, I found myself entering a new world (the sports media industry) unaware of how hard a job like that could be at times because professionals, like Scott, perfected their craft and made it look easy.

It is also an industry that would seem to feature very few African Americans on ESPN, let alone mainstream sports media on the national stage. 

While there is nothing wrong with it, many of the African American’s featured are former athletes who have found work after their professional career have come to a conclusion. 

One of those select few to make their way to the top of the industry without being a retired professional athlete is Scott, who in my mind is one of the most Stuart Scottrecognizable media members of this generation because of his unique catch phrases, that I know I would look forward to hearing the minute I saw him sitting behind a SportsCenter desk on ESPN. 

Sadly, the day has arrived in which Scott has passed away at the age of 49 following several bouts with cancer, as I heard the news from my sister who ran into my room to tell me of his passing.

This is a day I thought about before and was often reminded of especially over the last season or two when the Monday Night Football game would come to an end and the post game show on ESPN would begin.

Shortly after the intro of the show someone like Steve Young or Trey Wingo would give a shout out to Scott, when he was not in his usual spot as host of the show and let the fans know he is receiving treatment for cancer or as Scott would call it on Twitter, the “c-word.”

I never met Scott but did exchange a few tweets with him and even then, one can detect the humble gentleman that he was.

Sure, there may have been others just as good in sports media in the eyes of many, but today… in my time… they do not get any better than Stuart Scott.

The aftermath and outpouring of love for Scott, following his passing, speaks volumes to his character and ability.

It may have been just months ago in which he was honored at the ESPYs and gave a speech that I know I listened to several times that day.

He showed not only the love and passion for his occupation and those he worked with but also for his family, especially his young daughters who he loved dearly.

Stuart Scott, your energy and kindness will be missed. Rest easy brother.