Journalism That Matters, Create or Die 2 creates journalism innovations and media startups focused on diverse and underserved communities. Create or Die 2 uses an open-space format, an unconference style that puts the spotlight on participants and their passions.
Thursday | Inspiration Day: Conversation catalysts set the stage for team development. Our Innovation Expo showcases participant projects and ventures.

Friday | Design Day: Participants create sessions that explore new content, technology, funding, audiences and other ideas. Teams develop to pursue specific ideas for businesses or projects.

Saturday | Build Day: Teams meet to flesh out ideas and develop pitches.

Sunday | Pitch Day: Our coaching team of venture capital, foundation and entrepreneur mentors help teams refine their ideas and next steps.


Journalism That Matters Create or Die 2 offers cash prizes to winning pitch teams of $500-$1000. In addition, three North Carolina regional teams will benefit from close mentoring through the following incubators:
Winston-Salem: Wake Forest University: Offering one year of free incubation including access to databases, internships, mentorship and space.
Greensboro: Nussbaum Center for Entrepreneurship: Six months of shared office space, mentoring and networking to a local journalism startup.
Durham: Council for Entrepreneurial Development: Mentorship and networking to a Durham-based team.


Three conversation catalysts open the gathering Thursday evening, offering perspectives from different communities using different technologies:

• Chris Rabb, author of Invisible Capital, is a consultant, writer, and public speaker focusing on the intersection of social identity, media, civic engagement and entrepreneurship.

Tani Ikeda, executive director of imMEDIAte Justice in Los Angeles, teaches high school girls media literacy and sexuality education. Ikeda is an award winning director who creates narratives, documentaries, music videos, and commercial projects. She was named one of the 25 visionaries that are changing your world by the Utne Reader.

Mani Saint-Victor, president of Marveloper, LLC of Texas, talks about his transition from physician to creator of a social media marketing and game development studio. Marveloper is a game development company that markets games built from within the community by members of the community.

Three coaches guide our teams on Sunday with ideas for development and next steps. The coaching panel includes:

• Gary Palin, Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Executive Director of the Doherty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

• Akiba Smith-Francis is an author and career coach who has put a spotlight on the issue she calls Stepping Off the Path. She recognizes that young, educated professionals struggle with leaving the traditional, prestigious careers they are expected to have in order to pursue their true calling.

Ian Lamberth, Chief Information Officer, C2 Contractors, a leading communications and construction solutions provider specializing in the design, implementation and delivery of leading networking technologies and general trades construction.

Daily Schedule

Thursday, June 2, 2011: Understanding the context

All Thursday’s activities are at the Alumni House (including registration for dorm rooms)


1:00 – 6:00 p.m. Located at Alumni House, University of North Carolina, Greensboro


2:00 – 3:30pm Welcome to conference participants

  • Who’s here and what do we need to know to have a productive time together?

3:30 – 4:00pm Break

4:00 – 5:30pm *****  Innovation Expo ****

What news and information innovations are you doing that reach and activate diverse communities?

Media providers share their work through informal displays and conversations.

For information on hosting a table, contact us at

6:00 – 7:00pm Circulating dinner

Buffet style, with plenty of opportunity for networking. Knives optional — eat with one hand, hold your plate in the other, and keep circulating — or settle at one of the tables.

7:00 – 9:30pm Perspectives on Journalism and Communities

Innovations are reshaping the ability communities have for taking responsibility for their own stories.  What is the role journalism plays so that it engages and serves all people and communities?

  • Three “conversation catalysts” will offer their thoughts on relevant topics

World Café conversation:

What does it mean when communities take responsibility for their own stories?  How do journalists fit?  What innovations are reshaping news and information so that it engages and serves all people & communities?

We’ll cross-pollinate ideas among our diverse participants to build on the opening comments.

Outcome: Preliminary insights into the relationships between journalists and the communities they serve.  The result: A foundation for richer conversations on journalism innovations by and for diverse voices.


Unless noted, all Friday, Saturday, and Sunday activities are at the Elliott University Center

Friday, June 3 — Innovate: Explore/design ideas/projects

  • Purpose: To explore a wide range of innovative possibilities at the intersection of community, journalism, technology, and diversity
  • Organizing question: How do we nurture the innovators and serve the communities of the new news and information landscape?”
  • Structure: We’ll use “open-space technology” to organize our activity. Breakout sessions are hosted by participants on the topics of their choice.

8:00 – 8:45 am Continental breakfast and networking

9:00am  Agenda Creation

Session topics are chosen by participants.

10:30am Breakout Sessions 1

Noon – 1:30pm Lunch provided

1:30pm Breakout Sessions 2

3:00pm Breakout Sessions 3

4:30 – 5:00 pm Closing — What did we do today?

Outcomes: Topics of most interest explored in-depth.  Specific project teams begin taking shape.

6:00pm Dinner will be hosted courtesy of Elon University School of Communications at the Alumni House. Participants will have time to mull over new ideas, meet potential team members and rejuvenate after an intense day of idea generation.

Following the dinner, participants are invited to a complimentary tour of the International Civil Rights Center and Museum. Housed in the historic Woolworth’s where the Greensboro Four sat down at the lunch counter to protest unequal treatment, the museum demonstrates new ways of storytelling and engaging audiences in unique spaces.


Saturday, June 4 — Incubate: What’s your next step?

  • Purpose: To provide space for developing projects and taking action on initiatives which have life beyond this event.

8:00 – 8:45am Continental breakfast and networking

9:00am Organizing the day – agenda creation

Session topics are chosen by participants.They can last a few minutes, a few hours, or all day, if that’s what a project team decides.

10:30am Breakout Sessions 1

Noon – 1:30p.m. Lunch provided

1:30pm Breakout Sessions 2

3:00pm Breakout Sessions 3

4:30 – 5:00 p.m. Closing

Common themes: What new directions for serving the needs of communities are emerging?

Outcomes.  Ideas generated, partnerships formed, current initiatives revitalized, new initiatives identified, the relationships among journalism, technology, and diverse voices strengthened.


Sunday, June 5, Initiate: Bringing it on Home

Purpose: Give projects and other initiatives a boost before we head home.

8:00 – 8:45 am Hot breakfast of eggs and bacon and networking

9:00 – 11:30 Project Pitches

Project teams pitch their ideas and get feedback from invited coaches.  Our coaches for this event currently include:

  • Gary Palin, Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Executive Director of the Doherty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

11:30 – Noon  Closing