25 Oct 2010

Channel 4 News announces its Young Blogger of the Year

Channel 4 News has announced that the winner of its search to find the best young blogger in the UK is 17-year-old Louise Jones.

Launched to coincide with the programme’s new website, the competition set out to find a blogger (aged 16-24) who could blog for the site for one week with their own take on how issues in the news affect young people.

17-year-old Louise Jones, from Essex, was judged the clear winner for her blog on how the mass media coverage of terror attacks and wars that have followed 9/11 have affected her generation.

“Nothing shocks me,” she wrote. “Every stabbing, every dead soldier or hostage, is an everyday thing in my world. That must sound awful, but I know nothing different. Terrorists have always existed, and wars are like schools. Necessary.”

Read the full winning blog from Louise Jones: 9/11 and me .

Louise lives in Brentwood with her family and started blogging in 2009. One day she hopes to write her own column for a magazine or newspaper.

“Her blog was funny, topical – but most importantly, it felt like her immediate reflections on the world around her.” Jon Snow

She has described the moment the Channel 4 News presenter, Jon Snow, called her to let her know she had won: “I found out about the competition through Twitter, obviously, and it’s taken over my life since the end of September. I thought about it, dreamt about it, talked (a lot) about it, wore it, ate it…well…maybe not the last two but you get my drift. I can’t remember most of the conversation I had on the phone with Jon when he told me I’d won. I was too busy going !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! in my head and saying ‘Thank you so much!’ over and over again. Sorry Jon…. Mum’s said ‘For goodness sake child CALM DOWN’ about a trillion times in the last half an hour.”

Here’s Jon’s call to Louise, giving her the good news.

Jon, who was among the judging panel, said: “Louise captured the world through a 17 year old’s eyes. Her blog was funny, topical – but most importantly, it felt like her immediate reflections on the world around her – not an essay or a print article. I know she will be a brilliant addition to our site – and I look forward to asking her more tonight.”

“I’m going to be recommending this girl.” Political blogger Iain Dale

Co-presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy – another of the judges for the award – said he liked Louise’s blog because “she sounds like a teenager – she isn’t trying to sound older than she is”.

And fellow-judge Iain Dale – a political blogger and LBC radio host – enthused: “I’ve already added her to my reading list – I’m going to be recommending this girl.”

The judging panel review the entries

Judging panel
The other members of the judging panel were the broadcaster Richard Bacon, Josh Halliday – Media & Technology reporter for the Guardian, the Channel 4 News Technology Correspondent, Benjamin Cohen, and Vicky Taylor – the Head of Commissioning for New Media, Channel 4 News and Current Affairs.

Richard Bacon said: “I was looking for someone who sounded passionate, authentically young and who I would definitely read again and I will.”, whilst Josh Halliday added; “Louise’s blog is one that many teenagers can relate to. It had personality, wit – and it was news through the eyes of a 17-year-old. Very complementary to Channel 4 News’s current site, I thought.”

Three other entrants were marked out as “highly commended” by the judges: Reni Eddo-Lodge, Cory Hazlehurst and Jack Losh.

Louise Jones will be interviewed by Jon Snow on tonight’s Channel 4 News and you can read more of her blogs here.