City Limits, an investigative hyperlocal news source in NYC, created the Art at the Limits series, which actively engaged readers by encouraging them to submit their own stories and artwork highlighting their city experiences. In addition to collecting readers’ art and stories and featuring them on social media, City Limits also created a map of outer borough art galleries where readers could submit their favorite hidden gems.
Drawn from a report by the Institute for Nonprofit News and Dot Connector Studio. The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting created the Bridging Divides project, which brought “Fractured Lands” reporter Scott Anderson to K-12 schools and colleges across the country. They built a series of lessons on their online Lesson Builder for teachers to use in the classroom, which has received over 14,000 page views. Chicago students produced children’s books based on the characters in Scott’s reporting — and presented the work to elementary-school students.
KOSU has recognized the need for sharing our human experience during unstable times like these throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Communities are coming together now more than ever, and this is the quintessential time to gather safely and digitally to listen to each other’s stories.
Jersey Shore Hurricane News began in 2011 as a Facebook community page dedicated to sharing news about Hurricane Irene and Superstorm Sandy. JSHN joined the Listening Post Collective and launched several engagement projects to deepen its connection with the community, such as setting up audio listening and comment recording booths and hosting a Facebook Live Q&A with a mayor.
Fresno Bee education reporter and Center for Health Journalism fellow Mackenzie Mays spent nine months producing a series entitled Too Young? The series covers teen pregnancy in Fresno, California, with a particular focus on how sex education is taught in the Fresno Unified School District. The series hasn’t been without incident. After she reported on a student’s story of facing discrimination from school administrators after becoming pregnant, she came under personal and professional attack from a high level school administrator, both on social media and in through interviews of the administrator conducted by other local media.
The Off/Page Project, a collaboration between the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) and Youth Speaks, combines investigative reporting and youth poetry. Journalists from CIR share details of their investigations with youth storytellers and collaborate to write poetry that is both profound performance art and factually accurate reporting. The resulting poetry is then performed publicly, either in-person or through multimedia packages. Learn more about this project from Mashable and Youth Radio.
In 2014, ProPublica launched its Six Words youth engagement project in partnership with The Race Card Project. This project responded to the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court ending “separate but equal” legislation, and focused on two Alabama high schools—one integrated, one all-black. ProPublica reporters invited students from each school to meet and share their experiences around the re-segregation happening in their communities and photograph their experiences in school.
Drawn from a report by the Institute for Nonprofit News and Dot Connector Studio. IowaWatch’s 2016 College Media project, Making Boundaries, brought together 14 students to investigate efforts to limit speech on Iowa college campuses. The event was livestreamed on the bookstore’s weekly program, featured in a report on Iowa Watch’s 20-station network, and written up in related news stories at other Iowa news outlets.
“Democracy Dies in Dankness.” That’s the tagline of the Washington Post‘s official Reddit profile. The tagline mirrors the Post’s informal, even irreverant, approach on Reddit. Managed by social media editor and long-time Reddit user Gene Park, the Post’s Reddit profile participates on the platform just like any other Reddit user, engaging in humorous banter, posting memes, and playing it straight with other users. This approach has helped the Post build meaningful relationships with Reddit users, who have jumped at opportunities to ask questions during Ask Me Anything (AMA) sessions with reporters and learn about the Post’s reporting process.
In 2014, Carolina Public Press launched News Exchange, a series of free public meetings to invite communities to provide direct feedback on their local reporting efforts. Community members made suggestions for improvements, pitched story ideas, and allowed community members to discuss important issues with each other. Since its launch, the News Exchange has hosted dozens of events in several North Carolina counties. Learn more at Mountain Xpress and MediaShift.
Drawn from a report by the Institute for Nonprofit News and Dot Connector Studio. Oklahoma Watch hosts an annual public forum series called “Oklahoma Watch-Out.” The series includes moderated discussions with newsmakers and prominent elected officials on topics such as public health, education, and criminal justice. Events typically attract 60-80 people, and videos of the discussions are posted on oklahomawatch.org. Public radio and TV stations also feature the events as part of their regular programming. More here, here, and here.
Drawn from a report by the Institute for Nonprofit News and Dot Connector Studio. San Diego-based inewsource developed the Spotlight Club to generate enthusiasm and support for its work. Their first event was a discussion on the importance of investigative journalism with “real” Spotlight editor at The Boston Globe, Walter “Robby” Robinson.