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  • Bill Densmore 9:11 am on May 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: citizens, collaborator, , engagement, experts, facilitator, gatekeeper, legacy, newsroom,   

    Nine people imagine how a 20K-circ. daily might use tools and practices for better engagement 

    How might a 20,000-circulation daily newspaper find tools and adopt practices for better engaging with existing and new audiences?  At Elevate Engagement ,  Journalism That Matters board member (and Reynolds Journalism Institute fellow) Bill Densmore discussed the topic with nine fellow conference-goers over an hour — in groups of three each.  You can listen to the discussion from here (or just click on the carat to the left of the bar below if it is showing).

    Do you have specific ideas for improving the way newsrooms connect with their audiences, listeners, viewers and citizens? What is the best way to move beyond the role of gatekeeper and into a role as facilitator, collaborator and information valet?  Post your comments below!

    BONUS LINK: What do we mean by “engagement”?  |  Another view of engagement (Peggy Holman-2015)
    Overall conference contents/outcomes

    Our commentators (left to right in photos below):


    • Alex Powers, student, Univ. of Oregon School of Journalism & Communication; ex reporter Klamath Falls [Ore.] Herald & News
    • Emily Olson, student, Univ. of Oregon School of Journalism & Communication, intern, Pendleton [Ore.] East Oregonian
    • Christine Whitney-Sanchez, Innovation Parters International, Phoenix, Ariz.



    • Suzette Riley, general manager, C&C Marketing/PR agency in Portland, Ore., and Boston; working on environmental and social issues
    • Tova Averbuch, organizational-development consultant, Holon, Israel
    • Joy Mayer, consultant, strategics and trainer around news-industry engagement, Sarasota, Fla.

    PANEL ONE: From left, Alex Powers, Emily Olson and Christine Whitney-Sanchez

    PANEL THREE: From left, Suzette Riley, Tova Averbuch and Joy Mayer

    PANEL TWO: From left, Burgess Brown, Ashley Alvarado and Todd Milbourn

  • Yu Vongkiatkajorn 3:51 pm on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: labor, pay, , wages   

    Is passion enough? Dealing with the financial realities of student debt and unwaged labor in journalism. 

    Session Host: Yu Vongkiatkajorn and Simon Nyi

    Reporter: Jesse Hardman & Yu Vongkiatkajorn

    Keegan Clements-Housser
    Jesse Hardman
    Simon Galperin
    Mark Rellman
    Lisa Heyamoto
    Gracie McKenzie

    The purpose of the session was to open up a space for people to discuss what’s usually a taboo topic in journalism: fair wages and how little journalism pays. Participants shared what brought them to the session and questions they were dealing with.

    Simon N. Worked in a college newsroom. Avoided working as a reporter on the hill because knew I had student debt. Risk adverse. Was never an option to just ‘do what I love.’ Doesn’t work in traditional journalism now, but has economic security. Such a taboo to talk about fact that journalism doesn’t pay. Spaces need to be created to talk about this.

    Simon G. -has lots of college/grad school debt. Wondering: what can we do moving forward actionable moments in changing paradigm of what journalism pays? Tough to get experience (internships) to get to a job when internships don’t pay very well. Have always wanted to start an intern rights org.

    Mark- graduating from U of Oregon and going into corporate PR, not journalism. Important to take burden of college debt off students. “I want a livelihood and career that can grow.”

    Lisa- Teaches at UO J-school. As a journalism teacher I’m dealing with j school students every day who see this problem on the horizon. It’s tough, because students feel that they are signing up for a really difficult financial future.
    Other aspect, as a mid-career person, I think about my own path. I’ve got two kids, partner in media. Many years trying to balance passion/finance. Academia has provided a living wage. Making enough to not worry really helps.

    The journalism model has been disrupted, and there are all these opportunities, but they don’t pay well, if at all.

    Gracie- Citylab DC. Does social media for the site. Senior project in college was history, politics and intersection. Feels like she can’t speak out about fair wages without potentially feeling repercussions in her work.

    Simon- We need to talk about this issue, but it puts burden on people who are willing to actually put this topic out there and might be affected.

    Lisa – Prestige can get in the way of actually coming up with a plan that works.

    Simon – If you start conversation around Unionizing a media outlet, you can get labeled a troublemaker.

    Keegan – Notes that he is getting paid more from an international media outlet than in the US. We have to challenge the concept that there is not money in media. Call them out on that.

    Other Simon – working in community media you hear mainstream journalists say, we don’t have time to go cover something.
    Gannett has money, it’s just not going to the product, and reporters.

    Yu- When Mother Jones fellows recently asked for (and successfully) received minimum wage, they argued that their work was crucial to the magazine.

    Some overall takeaways and common themes:

    • People recognize that journalism pays little and have *consciously* chosen to not pursue careers in journalism as a result.
    • There needs to be more transparency about pay and spaces to talk about pay.
    • We shouldn’t be demonizing PR.. and it’s okay to look for other sources of pay.
    • Unions and labor movements are often portrayed by the media as agitators—is there a way to change how they are covered so that it’s not so antagonistic?
    • Our conversation just scratched the surface, and we need to keep it going!
  • Summer Fields 12:36 pm on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Media representation   

    Why is? Why come? Why not? with Sydette Harry 

    Simon Galperin
    Andre Natta
    Annie Anderson
    Summer Fields
    Sydney Padgett
    Adriana Gallardo
    Ariel Zirulnich
    Burgess Brown
    Mike Green

    what are roadblocks you encounter to you doing your best work? Turn roadblocks into questions.
    People never forget how you make them feel! How do you feel when you hear these roadblocks?

    “I’m a peacock. You gotta let me fly.”
    “How well is that tactic working for you?”
    “Exhaustion >> Desire to build relationships/alliances
    hopeless to think too big. find engagement proponents.
    scary to think about going into existing structures of the industry.
    communities can be unwieldy: I take personally a lack of interest.
    overcoming reinventing the wheel mentality.

    What are you not seeing in coverage of your community and why? What is not being asked? What would you ask or say if you didn’t have to worry about retribution?

    1. Immigrant communities
    What’s missing: actual system/tool on mixed document status communities.
    Q: “What resources are you so attached to that you’re going after kids?”

    2. Immigrant community, & a Chicago resident.
    What’s missing: Conversation around Chicago and the tropes are so trite.
    What’s missing: How random it all is with immigration history. No nuance to that discussion.
    Q: “How did the Reagan amnesty play out for immigration status?

    3. College-aged woman in context of rapid rise of sexual assault at her university.
    Q: Why are you ignoring or even sustaining a community where sexual assault is so permissible?”

    4. Texas native.
    Q: “How has history of violence against Latinos led to an environment of bad symbiosis with whites in TX? What would it take to walk away from that? What would we lose as a community?”
    Q: Why do editors/the public expect non-whites to write emotive stories that explain our inner lives rather than document the reality that we see with our own eyes?

    5. Lesbian and mother.
    What’s missing: In gay rights convo, parents have to literally adopt children that are non-biological that their partners gave birth to to gain legal protections. There’s a division between folks who think gay marriage means parents have enough protection, and those who realize it’s not enough. There is a need to push for more equity.

    6. Activist/journalist: Writing can reinforce the status quo of inequality.
    Q: “When are we going to turn journalism into a revolutionary, progressive, utopia-creating tool needed for our own democracy?”

    7. Bronx native and Black man living in Birmingham, AL in a >40% black area.
    Q: ” Why is black leadership and property ownership near absent in the core of the city? What roadblocks exist to these things?

    8. White man: Watching Sally Yates hearing play out.
    Q: What would it take to make our government more representational?

    Dream big! Next steps we can take from what we have in the room.
    Think about community not just out there but within: think of the community making journalism.
    Build in spaces for play like this one in your lives.

  • Summer Fields 10:57 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Trust   

    How do we *earn* trust? Joy Mayer, Engagement Strategist 

    Disregard last submission!

    How do we earn trust? Joy Mayer, Engagement Strategist

    Linn Davis: Healthy Democracy
    Mike Fancher: “retired” superstar
    Jake Batsell: social professor of journalism at SMU. Author.
    Joe Barr: Chief Content Officer at Capital Public Radio/oversees music.
    Sarah Alvarez: Outlier Media, texting high-value info to Detroiters
    Linda Shaw: Seattle Times
    Lisa Hayamoto: teaches journalism at UO. Holds community engagement workshops.
    Summer Fields: engagement consultant at Hearken, writes about “diversity” in public media.

    How can journalists earn trust?
    Questions for us to ask: Where do I put my ear to hear what’s happening at the grassroots?
    What language do we use?
    How do I know that transparency is what the audience wants? Figure out what they want to know.
    What gives you credibility?

    Concrete steps to take:
    Studying cognitive bias.
    Talk about what, why, how we do things and repeat.
    See trust as what needs to be earned.
    Relationship is 2-way trust.
    Get reporters back into the communities to use language people use.
    Be trustworthy!
    Process-driven answers to audience queries about stories: don’t feel the need to give mini reports.
    Think about how race and class organize society.

    More notes:
    How do we earn trust?

    Will we change our routines to be trustworthy?

    transparency: what we do, how we do it. Who are the people doing the news? sides to story? how do we decide what to cover?

    clear explanation of process. demystify pre-publication. tell people why we do what we do.

    “This story took a month. It was worth it because…”

    Show your work. Make intentions clear in the lede. Not just findings. e.g. NYT daily presenting news + sausage making.

    have a phone number and a front door.

    just cover what people say they care about! e.g. Hearken model,

    conflict-driven reporting over impact.

    death of expertise. lack of trust in authority.

    Is “the media” journalism?

    personalization: you’re talking to/working for me! Solution to broader dismissive tone issue, just talking to audience?

    branding self as journalist vs. just being someone you can trust,.

    do our digital tools serve us?

    earn trust through social. emphasize relevance. see Joy’s trusting news project part 1.

    overcoming competition in service of newsroom collaboration. elevate trust in other institutions through sharing work.

    not just trusting journalism: institutions, democracy, each other. open the pipeline. journalists as intermediaries.

    be willing to suspend values. share your platform and the ability to agenda set with the public.
    Build trust collaboratively. Not just try to “earn.”
    Engagement is like dating — Joy’s piece on Poynter ( Don’t ask for more intimacy that you’ve earned. Validate participation. No shortcuts to showing up.

    Trust is an ongoing project! Don’t assume you won’t have to repeat your efforts. E.g. Newsy explaining why they used the term “American Indian” in a DAPL piece in the FB comments for the video. Shows a hunger for cultural competency can be filled by journalists. Here’s the original post where the reporter clarified:

    Dismantle hard news bias: cover little things, know the “little folks” in your community.

    Professionalization of journalism + lack of resources = killer

    Earn trust through empathy.

    Who is trusted now outside of news?
    Libraries! Local papers, if not “news” broadly. Local congressmen, but not “congress” broadly. Being able to verify with own eyes helps.

    When will newsrooms trust communities?? It goes both ways. Joy’s survey was delivered locally but in it the “media” is assumed to be national.

  • Ashley Alvarado 10:46 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How can journalists be invited to cover positive stories about ocean issues? MITSUE COOK 

    How can journalists be invited to cover positive stories about ocean issues? MITSUE COOK

    Christine Whitney Sanchez Bruno Kauffman
    LIsa Loving
    Tova Averbuch

    What are the positive things that are happening? What can I do?
    NY Times- snowfall about the Arctic It may not be too late
    Do an inventory of who is covering the ocean and create a relationship with the people who are reporting.
    The story of the ocean is the story of people.
    Homeowners Cleaning the beach
    Nuclear decisions – compare Japan and Sweden. (Democracy in Japan and Sweden)
    Water in different forms- flowing, interconnecting, recycling
    In Eastern Europe- It was rivers that brought the people to push back against their governments
    Connect the various water movements
    Environmental writers- you can elevate the stories
    Challenge to size down to key elements
    IN society, dialogue is the equivalent to water
    Open dialogue reduces mistrust of transnationals
    BOb Stilger wrote book about Fukushima
    VItze- activist protecting oceans
    Dutch youth took juveniles and outcasts and trained them to be law enforcers
    Maybe the attack (half conscious) on sweater is an attack on connection (Rather than in our own bubble)
    Oceans seen as space for industry and building cities- instrumentalized rather than living
    Social m edit campaign – Instagram
    Take photos of ocean with this hashtag Joining larger movement
    People are thirsty fo r you r message Existential threat of global warming
    Time is shorter than you think
    Make journalism Joe effective and creative Seriousness s, digestible policy education Provide straight reporting
    Connections between different rent activist communities
    Concentrate on local level Open people’s eyes
    Most journalists are living in limited l Evelyn and. Resources
    Local identities/ego grow as the negative focus grows (we are the best) Great journalists represent great ideas and point to collective action
    Changed mindset
    Focus on daily life. – quality of life
    What can you do on a daily basis to love H2O Practice journalism as if it’s The last day of you r life
    Maybe the attack (half conscious) on sweater is an attack on connection (Rather than in our own bubble)
    Oceans seen as space for industry and building cities- instrumentalized rather than living
    Social m edit campaign – Instagram
    Take photos of ocean with this hashtag Joining larger movement
    People are thirsty fo r you r message Existential threat of global warming
    Time is shorter than you think
    Make journalism Joe effective and creative Seriousness s, digestible policy education Provide straight reporting
    Connections between different rent activist communities
    Concentrate on local level Open people’s eyes
    Most journalists are living in limited l Evelyn and. Resources
    Local identities/ego grow as the negative focus grows (we are the best) Great journalists represent great ideas and point to collective action
    Changed mindset
    Focus on daily life. – quality of life
    What can you do on a daily basis to love H2O Practice journalism as if it’s The last day of you r life

  • Annie M Andresi 9:05 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , empathy, listening   

    How do we define community? 

    Host & reporter: Annie Anderson
    Participants: David Zeman, Alicia Montgomery, Robin Teater, Gracie McKenzie, Suzette Riley, Jodi Gersh, Yu Vongkiatkajorn, Jerry Millhon, Cornelia Reichel, Lauren Pabst

    Opening questions: What’s the tie that binds community together? How do we let communities define themselves? (Why is it important to know and to what end are we defining community?)

    • Generalizing community is damaging: the erasure of the individual when talking about “community” broadly –> we are all part of many communities/intersectional community. Using nuance to discuss community is what builds trust.
    • The definition comes from within the community, which could be based on a common experience/geography/identity/etc, by allowing the people inside the group to tell us who they are.
    • Always try to describe behaviors, not groups of people, while also centering people in the story.
    • The time to learn about a community is NOT in a crisis.

    Words at play: empathy, listening, connectedness, authenticity

  • Ashley Alvarado 6:36 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Socioeconomic Models & Community Information Districts 

    Icebreaker (favorite smell) (also attendees)
    Burgess – basil
    Prism – khaosoi
    Fiona – ginger
    Christine – lemon blossoms
    Andre – gardenia
    Michelle – honeysuckle
    Amber – lilac
    Stephen – corsican mint
    Keegan – petrocore
    Simon – eucalyptus
    Mike – lavender

    Topic notes

    Prism opening remark

    We see strife and destabilization of institutions, how does it relate to our economy? Let’s build better socioeconomic models.

    Simon opening remark

    What does journalism look like in a new socioeconomic model?

    Session discussion of info districts

    Use regional development organizations for (seed) funding
    Participatory budgeting
    Work with community foundations serving the disconnected
    Communicating with community is vital for a shared vision
    Construct info districts at zip code level for de-politicized boundaries
    Community foundations can convene the right people
    Funding: business taxes, engage community in in-kind donation
    What’s the org’s ascertainment structure?

    Question: how do we increase engagement in a system we design from the ground up?

    Employees have 10% of their time freed up for civic engagement
    Work in the community you live in
    Time (or lack thereof) is the key issue
    Making decisions only for communities you live in
    What systems could we create to mitigate the bullshit of intra-community politics
    Give people choices for how to engage
    Create the space for people to do what they love for the benefit of others

  • Bob Stilger 5:10 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Engaging Community, Not Audience 

    This session never happened. The issues being discussed in a breakout in the first session on the second day about engaging with difference were very related this topic and I decided to fold them together when it became clear it would be silly to cut off the first session to move into this one!

  • Bob Stilger 5:07 am on May 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How Can Our Apparent Differences Be Fuel for Right Action: Learning Exchanges and Learning Journeys: 

    Four of us talked. Christine Whitney Sanchez, Mitsue Cook and Todd Milburn. We talked, loosely, about NewStories plan to organize a learning exchange in Kentucky and West Virginia later this year, bringing 15 local activists together with 15 from other parts of the country. Likely threads of participation are health, energy and journalists. The initiative grows out of last year’s National Listening Tour on Creating a Culture of Health that NewStories did last year with Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

    We talked about how one of the challenges is to attract both so-called progressives and so-called conservatives to participate. What’s needed is a potluck of ideas, people said. We should bring in a wide rages of perspectives about what drives and disrupts trust. Obama Foundation might be interested. Work that Christine and Juanita Brown and David Isaacs did called Promise USA might fit in somehow.

    We noticed that the topic — perhaps because of the way it was expressed — held no attraction for journalists in the room. Todd, who can wear the journalist hat, wandered in, new to the conference and uncertain about what was going on.

    At a meta-level, the lack of participation started to open up questions for Bob about just how and what journalists at Elevate Engagement really wanted to engage with — audience or community. Also questions about how to invite across the divides: how can journalists really invite community in and how can community invite journalists in?

  • Andrew Rockway 7:15 pm on May 22, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Conversations, Guide, Tools   

    Create a short, adaptable guide for journalists to design and host community conversations 

    1st Step: Develop a basic outline for feedback

    Lead: Andrew Rockway
    Support: Fiona Morgan, Ivan Roman, Emmalee McDonald, Linda Jue, Anthony Advincula, Robin Teater, Ashley Alvarado, Amy Wang, Peggy Holman, Adin Rogovin, Lori Shontz, Simon Nyi, Alisha Wang Saville, Tova Averbuch, Elaine Cha

    Miscellaneous Notes
    • Help with mapping existing dialogue/facilitation/conversation frameworks pertinent to journalism (Emmalee)
    • Narrow focus –> What do journalists need relative to their skillsets?
    • Facilitating, or hosting?
    • Include examples for journalists in their language

    • Can journalists experience/participate in these types of conversations first?
    • Set journalists up for success/quick wins
    • Need to tailor guide to specific issues (like opioids) or make more universal?
    • Include how to partner with, for example, NCDD member orgs
    • Cultural competencies, boundaries,
    • To include in Guide:

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