Paving the Way for the National Conventions at USA TODAY

By DeaYan USA Today Blog Photon’s Intern Yan Shi at USA TODAY

In preparation for the Republican National Convention and the Democratic National Convention, the Interactive News team was tasked with the job of carrying out a project that involved all the newspapers under the USA TODAY NETWORK banner to capture the personalities, dreams, ideas and thoughts of supporters of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. The idea was to show and tell a different about Trump and Clinton supporters—too often we hear about the demographics of the voters, but we don’t get to hear their stories and the reasons why they’re voting the way that they are voting. The purpose was to humanize the supporters and to give the voters a face. The interactive contains photos, audio and transcripts.

I worked in tandem with Mitchell, who is a developer and designer on the Interactive News team. While he developed the interactives for Trump Nation and Clinton Nation, I was tasked with organizing and editing the content that was coming in from across nation. I determined the quality of the photos and the quality of audio received. I edited the audio files and created rough transcriptions of the audio, which were later edited by Mitchell and Shawn, who is also a part of the Interactive News team (and is my manager). The final transcriptions came about after the copy editors took what we had and edited what was missed.

The transcriptions, audio editing and gathering of key information and assets took approximately two and a half weeks, give or take, and it’s two and a half weeks that I wholeheartedly enjoyed. The graphics team created a Trump Nation print version for the paper. Seeing it on paper and online made me giddy in the morning.

Furthermore, seeing how the graphics team and the developers team of the Interactive News team, as a whole, collaborate with one another to provide key graphics and ideas for the final interactive was also something to behold. The people here are passionate, too, about the work that they do and that passion rubs off.