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April 04 2011


LocalWiki Codes, Talks, Searches for Pilot Community

Here's a summary of what we've been up to for the past month or so at LocalWiki: coding, coding, coding, coding, talking, coding, talking, talking, coding, coding, coding. Occasionally we take breaks for sleep and nutritional intake purposes. Want more detail? Read on!

Code, code, code, code & milestone

We've been hard at work on the software side of the project. In the past month, we've:

  • begun serious work on our collaborative mapping system;
  • made the basic functions of our page editor work better;
  • and come up with a way to allow for plug-ins and dynamic content inside pages.

We're aiming to have something that our first pilot community can use to begin building content by May 1. It won't be pretty or complete. Our goal is to allow our first pilot to start experimenting and providing feedback while using the software to start building something great in their community. This milestone will also be a good point for interested developers to jump in, as we'll have something a little more polished and cohesive than we do now.

Talk, talk, talk

This month, we had a panel at the SXSW Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, titled "Too Small, Too Open: Correcting Wikipedia's Local Failure." It went really well, despite being at 9:30 am on a Saturday! I was joined by Phoebe Ayers of the Wikimedia Foundation and Michael Trice of the University of Leeds Centre for Digital Citizenship.

In February, we were part of a roundtable at the Aspen Institute in Washington, DC, to discuss the unveiling of a paper they wrote with the Knight Foundation about local community information hubs. Their report praises the model we are developing. "Davis Wiki site offers almost everything the authors of the Informing Communities report hoped for when they drew up the seven key ingredients for any local online hub," the authors wrote.

A few weeks before that, we gave a talk at the Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism's Knight Digital Media Center on the Davis Wiki and a bit about our work on the LocalWiki project.

Choosing our first pilot community

Assuming all goes according to plan, we'll choose our first pilot community to work with in six weeks. But we need your help. We're looking for some particular characteristics for our first pilot community:

  • willingness to work with incomplete software;
  • ability to work fairly autonomously, at least at first;
  • preferably, a community where the media landscape is not already crowded;
  • patience and commitment -- it will take time and effort;
  • and enthusiasm, curiosity and wonder!

Know of some great people in a place that fits what we're looking for? If so, please recommend a pilot community. We'll be in contact with potential candidates for our first pilot in five weeks or so. Expect an Idea Lab update around that time.

August 31 2010


5Across: Beyond J-School

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5Across is sponsored by Carnegie-Knight News21, an alliance of 12 journalism schools in which top students tell complex stories in inventive ways. See tips for spurring innovation and digital learning at Learn.News21.com.

Just as traditional media has struggled with disruptive technology and the Internet, so too have the institutions that run journalism education. Most journalism schools and training programs are run by people whose careers were framed by print, broadcast and traditional PR, so how can students get the skills they need in the digital age? We convened a group of journalism educators, a trainer, a student and a J-school dropout to discuss how journalism education is shifting.

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The discussion flowed from the changing curriculum to the student's mindset -- why do students still believe in the romance of a journalism career when there are so few jobs? How should educators teach new multimedia skills, as well as collaboration with other journalists and even the people formerly known as the audience? And finally, do students even need a journalism degree or can they learn it all themselves. We discuss this and a whole lot more on this spirited episode of 5Across, part of our two-week special on journalism education at MediaShift. Check it out!

5Across: Beyond J-School


>>> Subscribe to 5Across video podcast <<<

>>> Subscribe to 5Across via iTunes <<<

Guest Biographies

After dropping out of journalism school in 1998, Lea Aschkenas wrote a story about her experiences for Salon. Her post-journalism school career includes a stint as a staff reporter, itinerant freelance writer, and author of the memoir, "Es Cuba: Life and Love on an Illegal Island" (Seal Press, 2006). She has also written for the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and San Francisco Chronicle. Currently, she works as a public librarian and teaches poetry-writing through the California Poets in the Schools program.

Kelly Goff is a senior in the journalism department at San Francisco State University, focusing on print and online journalism. She recently moved to San Francisco from Los Angeles, where she earned her associates in journalism from Pierce College. She is also an assistant events planner with the Journalism Association of Community Colleges.

Jon Funabiki is a professor of journalism at San Francisco State University and executive director of the Renaissance Journalism Center, which conducts projects to stimulate journalistic innovations that strengthen communities. Funabiki is the former deputy director of the Ford Foundation's Media, Arts & Culture Unit and was the founding director of San Francisco State University's Center for Integration and Improvement of Journalism. As a journalist with The San Diego Union, he specialized in U.S.-Asia political and economic affairs and reported from Japan, China, South Korea, the Philippines, Vietnam and other countries.

Lanita Pace-Hinton is the director of the Knight Digital Media Center, a
continuing education program based at the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. The Knight Digital Media Center offers free week-long workshops that provides journalists with hands-on training on multimedia storytelling and how to use web tools and social media. Lanita has served as director of career services

and industry outreach for the UC Berkeley journalism school. She advised students on skills development and how to prepare for their entry into the profession.

Full disclosure: The Knight Digital Media Center is a sponsor of PBS MediaShift.

Howard Rheingold is a prominent author, educator and speaker on technology and the Internet. He wrote best-sellers about virtual reality and virtual communities, and was the founding executive editor of HotWired. He also founded Electric Minds in the mid-'90s. Rheingold has taught as appointed lecturer at UC Berkeley and Stanford University and has spoken about the social, cultural, political and economic impacts of new technologies.

If you'd prefer to watch sections of the show rather than the entire show, I've broken them down by topic below.

Shifting the Curriculum

The Student's Mindset

The Good and Bad of Social Media

Journalism School Necessary?

Teaching Tech Skills


Mark Glaser, executive producer and host
Corbin Hiar, research assistant

Singeli Agnew, camera

Julie Caine, audio

Location: Vega Project & Kennerly Architecture office space in San Francisco

Special thanks to: PBS and the Knight Foundation

Music by AJ the DJ


What do you think? Are you an educator or student with thoughts on how journalism should be taught? Do you think a degree in journalism is necessary to become a journalist? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Mark Glaser is executive editor of MediaShift and Idea Lab. He also writes the bi-weekly OPA Intelligence Report email newsletter for the Online Publishers Association. He lives in San Francisco with his son Julian. You can follow him on Twitter @mediatwit.

news21 small.jpg

5Across is sponsored by Carnegie-Knight News21, an alliance of 12 journalism schools in which top students tell complex stories in inventive ways. See tips for spurring innovation and digital learning at Learn.News21.com.

This is a summary. Visit our site for the full post ».

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July 15 2010


iPhone 4 a ‘serviceable web video camera in breaking news situations’

Len De Groot, from the Knight Digital Media Center, has a useful first-hand account of using the iPhone 4 for reporting news.

Having taken his new iPhone out with him at lunch to put its tools to the test, he agreed it would prove a valuable tool for reporters.

Suddenly, the iPhone can be a serviceable web video camera in breaking news situations or unplanned interviews. It allows you to shoot and edit video, add lower thirds and titles and upload directly to the web.

It will not replace professionals and professional equipment, however. It fits into “the best camera is the one you have on you” category.

In his post he discusses his experiences of audio quality, uploading a full HD video to quicktime and then getting the clips onto youtube and vimeo as viewing platforms.

See the full post here…

Related reading on Journalism.co.uk: iPhone 4 developments herald a mobile future for newsSimilar Posts:

April 21 2010


Knight Digital Media Center: Mobile news ‘is not internet lite’

The Knight Digital Media Center’s News Leadership 3.0 blog has a post rounding up the best advice from a recent conference on mobile news. Top tips from newsrooms and editors already developing mobile strategies and applications include:

  • Remember content AND convenience;
  • Don’t treat mobile news as a ‘lite’ version of your website;
  • Don’t just cater for high-end handsets – think about how text messaging can be used.

Full story at this link…

Similar Posts:

February 04 2010


Knight Digital Media Center looking for News Entrepreneurs and Newsroom Leaders for Upcoming Workshops

Screen shot 2010-02-04 at 2.18.59 PMIf you’re looking for professional training opportunities, the Knight Digital Media Center has a couple of great programs coming up.

The News Entrepreneur Boot Camp is designed for 20 competitively selected digital entrepreneurs with great ideas for community news and information initiatives in the public interest. The boot camp will be held May 16-21, at USC Annenberg. Deadline for applications is February 19, 2010.

The Transformative Leadership Institute is looking for people who are already positioned as the new leaders of news and information in the community interest. They are looking for leaders from major established news organizations that are transforming themselves and also for news entrepreneurs who are reinventing models for news and information. You can nominate yourself, or anyone else you feel is qualified for this program. The final list of fellows will be named in May. Deadline for nominations is March 31, 2010.

You can see a full list of upcoming seminars and workshops at their site. If you have questions about either of these opportunities, you can contact Vikki Porter, Director of KDMC, at vporter@usc.edu. For updates and announcements on new programs, you can also check them out on twitter: @kdmc.

January 28 2010


Apply now for Knight Digital Media Center’s Web Publishing for Independent Journalists Workshop- Deadline Feb 17

Screen shot 2010-01-28 at 11.14.08 AMThe Knight Digital Media Center at UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism is offering some terrific educational opportunities this spring, including a Web Publishing for Independent Journalists Workshop to be held March 21-26, 2010.

The career path for many of today’s journalists is merging with entrepreneurship. Journalists who once covered topical, feature and investigative news for established newspapers are becoming independent publishers of specialty blogs and hyperlocal community news site. These sites fulfill an important role in the emerging news and information landscape.

Powerful and easy to use Web publishing tools make creating quality online news sites easy and affordable. These new tools are allowing individual journalists and community journalism to flourish as part of the evolving news eco-system.

The Knight Digital Media Center at the University of California Berkeley is offering an innovative new training workshop for journalists who have or are actively seeking to venture into online community or specialty news publishing. The Web Publishing for Independent Journalists Workshop will provide journalists with the hands-on training and tools to get started with an online publishing enterprise.

Participants in the Web Publishing for Independent Journalists Workshop will receive training on:

  • Setting up and maintaining a WordPress blog
  • Establishing a brand
  • Shooting good video and video editing
  • Using Photoshop to prepare images for publication
  • How to sell advertising
  • Data visualization at the community level
  • Basic Mapping and Data-driven Maps
  • Using social media to develop and engage with audiences
  • SEO and Google Analytics

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Wednesday, February 17, 2010

WHO SHOULD APPLY: Journalists who have already begun or are in the process of launching an online news venture.

HOW TO APPLY: An online application form and instructions are available at: http://multimedia.journalism.berkeley.edu/training/

To fill out the application, you’ll need to register at the site (and confirm that in an email link). By registering, you’ll be able to save your application and return later to edit, update or complete. The application includes questions about your contact information and your proficiency in various equipment and software, as well as a statement of interest by you, a letter of recommendation from a colleague who knows your professional work, and a resume summary of your journalism experience.

If you have any questions, please contact Alisha Diego Klatt, KDMC program specialist, at aklatt@berkeley.edu or (510) 642-3892.

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