JMR’s Participatory Journalism Playbook

This playbook by jesikah maria ross is a guide to participatory journalism. The playbook is intended to help you select and develop stories in conversation with the communities most affected by a certain issue; design a reporting process that generates understanding, connection, and trust; and strengthen existing networks and forge new alliances that build community resilience beyond reporting.

Community-Centered Journalism Engaging People, Exploring Solutions, and Building Trust

Contemporary journalism faces a crisis of trust that threatens the institution and may imperil democracy itself. Critics and experts see a renewed commitment to local journalism as one solution. But a lasting restoration of public trust requires a different kind of local journalism than is often imagined, one that engages with and shares power among all sectors of a community.

Complicating the Narratives

What if journalists covered controversial issues differently — based on how humans actually behave when they are polarized and suspicious? As politicians have become more polarized, we have increasingly allowed ourselves to be used by demagogues on both sides of the aisle, amplifying their insults instead of exposing their motivations. But what else can we do with conflict, besides letting it sit? We’re not advocates, and we shouldn’t be in the business of making people feel better. Our mission is not a diplomatic one. So what options does that leave?

Newsletters as News Products: A Guide for Local Newsrooms

This guide was created based on a workshop I gave to graduate students at the Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the City University of New York. It is the culmination of a lot of research and my own experience with email outreach, online advocacy, and fundraising, as well as my work on the Local Fix, a weekly newsletter on tips and tools for local journalists.

News Voices: Don’t Just Engage. Organize!

News Voices takes an organizing approach to support quality local news by working directly with communities. When we say organizing, we don’t mean “activism.” Organizing is fundamentally about listening to people tell you what they need and what kind of world they want and working collaboratively to make it happen. This guide will help newsrooms use organizing principles and values to build deep relationships to enhance community trust.

Towards a Civic Communications Ecosystem for Thriving Community

What’s possible when the public and journalists engage to support communities to thrive? Engagement is about authentic connections, valuing people, and mutual exchanges so that what’s best for individuals and the community as a whole emerges. With both journalists and other community members present at Experience Engagement, some conversations also pointed towards a communications ecosystem that supports the civic health of communities. Beyond journalism, as we know it, this civic communications ecosystem would provide robust information, feedback, inclusive dialogue, strategy and action for serving community goals. Read more of this from co-author Peggy Holman.

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