The Axel Springer Academy, Germany's most progressive school of journalism, is launching www.LiebensWerte.de ("Love(able)Values") on Valentine's Day. The creators' idea for the website: "We want to condense the largest and most complex thing in the world – love – into the smallest and the simplest: a number." The Academy's students have researched numerous stories and facts on the subjects of relationships, sex, love and heartache. They want to use the cross-media project to show, what modern journalism can achieve. In doing so, they use the full spectrum of possibilities open to the Internet: Alongside 35 mainly interactive infographics, which they designed themselves, elaborate videos, audio slideshows, interviews and reports can be found on LiebensWerte.de.
Every aspect of Love has an interesting and often surprising number as its basis: 9 Viagra tablets, for example, are prescribed worldwide every second; 7800 people are admitted to German hospitals every year with "Broken heart syndrome"; 35 percent of the members of the German Bundestag are still single; 190,000 stalking cases were registered by police in 2011; a German marriage survives 14 years on average. All these facts are enlarged upon using elements of "visual storytelling". The navigation of the site has been streamlined to the wishes of the users: Depending on age and interests you can reset the topic filter yourself.
"Data journalism is becoming more and more important; at the same time our students are encouraged to develop new and creative approaches during their training and thus attract young target groups in particular to digital journalism", Marc Thomas Spahl, the Director of the Academy explains.
During their two-year vocational training at the Axel Springer Academy, young journalists learn their craft from scratch. The focus is on cross-media work and investigative research. The Academy, which is also a publisher's think tank, has won many awards for its projects, including the Grimme Online Award, the CeBIT AppStar and the European Newspaper Award. Recently, students from the Academy made a single street the focus of a journalistic offering for the first time ever with the hyperlocal website www.zoom-berlin.com. And the team from the Academy's www.20zwoelf.de press freedom portal were chosen by an expert jury as among the best "Journalists of the Year 2012".
The explanatory video for LiebensWerte.de (in German language):