As Ben DeJarnette writes in the kick-off piece to this special series, “There perhaps was no journalistic buzzword more widely discussed in 2015 than ‘engagement.’” The series, writes DeJarnette, was inspired by Experience Engagement, a four-day participatory “un-conference” hosted by Journalism That Matters and the Agora Journalism Center. Over the next two weeks, this series will explore the progress, promise and potential challenges of community engagement in journalism.
Engagement can be lonely work. Many of us do not have in-person colleagues who understand or even support our efforts. We crave a sense of belonging — that feeling that other people get us, like us, and have our back. We want to feel like we’re part of an intentional community. The community we need shouldn’t, however, come with a membership application. There’s room for diverse motivations, organizations, goals, and strategies under the large umbrella of engaged journalism.
NewsU: As a mediator among those who create, distribute and consume the news, the Newseum wants to help each group better understand the others. In this session, the Newseum’s Kristi Kenneth focuses on revealing what the organization has learned about the current media landscape through workshops with news consumers young and old world-wide. What issues cause the most confusion? Where does the public lay blame for problems like “fake” news? What skills do students and the general public need to develop, and what can journalists do to help bolster those skills?
How can journalists surface community perspectives through doing, not just talking? CapRadio in Sacramento, Calif., collaborated with an elementary school to host an activity-based listening event to find out. Here’s what happened.
The seven members, one for each Oakland district, will be reading the organization’s stories and giving feedback to ensure they stay true to their founding values. This paid group of community advisors is the heart of The Oaklandside’s Mission Metric initiative.
This intellectual history of the civic journalism movement focuses on the ideas of Charles Darwin, John Dewey, and George Mead. Author David Perry suggests that the detailed study of these ideas may help shape the future evolution of civic journalism.
Impact Tracker is an open-source tool from the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR). It’s an interactive database that helps manage records of real-world change associated with a story, project or event. The entered dataset is filterable and searchable to track impact by topic or time period. Here’s a handy guide in how to use the tool, a write-up from journalism.co.uk, and download the open-source version.
Across the journalism industry, more and more newsrooms are turning to events as part of their engagement and revenue strategy. And advertisers and residents are responding. In Texas last year, The Texas Tribune made roughly $1.5 million from its journalism events, most of which were offered free to the public. In Philadelphia, Billy Penn made 84 percent of its revenue on events. In this guide, we will draw on lessons and case studies from news events run by newsrooms of all sizes and share some key lessons for publishers who are just getting started.
The opportunity now is to shepherd and accelerate a transition to an emergent civic media system. This new ecosystem looks different from what it will replace: while the commercial market rewarded information monopolies, what is emerging now are pluralistic networks in which information is fluid, services are shared, and media is made in cooperation with the people it seeks to serve.