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  • Open House with Peter Pula, CEO of Axiom News

    10:56 on 19 June, 2013 | 1 Comment Permalink

    Location:  The Hub Seattle, Glass Room, 220 2nd Ave South, Seattle, WA 98104

    When finding solutions is part of the journalist’s job

    As noted earlier this month in a Nieman Journalism Lab post by Jan Schaffer, journalism that activates is becoming a trend.

    Peter Pula, who started Axiom News, has 15 years of experience with doing what he calls “generative journalism”.  Founded on the principles of Appreciative Inquiry, it is a strengths-based approach for propelling communities and organizations towards their highest potential.  And to support their journalism, Axiom News has a business model that works.

    Learn more by coming to The Hub Seattle anytime between 9:00am and 4:00pm on Wednesday, June 26th.  Peter, along with Mike Fancher, former editor of the Seattle Times and Peggy Holman, co-founder of Journalism That Matters will be there.  In the spirit of Journalism That Matter’s unconferences, the conversation will center around the interests of the people who come.

    At 11:00am, Peter will say a few words about Axiom News informed by the morning’s conversations.

    Our purpose for gathering: to learn, make new connections, strengthen the web of the news and information community in the area, and to connect with other communities from around the world who are working in similar directions.

    So join us.  And bring your friends.

    Peggy Holman and Mike Fancher

    Brought to you by the Seattle Journalism Commons, a project of Journalism That Matters

  • Washington News Council Hearing

    10:26 on 30 May, 2013 | 0 Comment Permalink

    The Washington News Council will hold a public hearing on a complaint against The Seattle Times from Dr. Richard Wollert, a Vancouver psychologist. The hearing will be from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 1, at Town Hall Seattle. Audience members will be invited to vote along with the WNC’s Hearings Board. Doors open to public at 8:30 a.m. There is no admission charge.

  • KING-5 Photojournalists Dominate NPPA Awards

    14:43 on 31 March, 2013 | 0 Comment Permalink

    The photojournalism team at King-TV has been named the nation’s best among large market stations. The National Press Photographers Association also awarded Doug Burgess of KING the 2013 Ernie Crisp Photographer of the Year.

    According to NPPA, Judge Brian Kaufman said, “He has the ability to take really complicated stories and shoot them in a way that made them conversational.” Judge Lynn French said, “He has a signature to his stories, you could easily pick them out.”

    Jeff Christian of KING-News was runner-up for photographer of the year. Galleries of work by Burgess and Christian are here.

    John Sharify of KING-News was runner-up for the NPPA photojournalism award for reporting. His work is posted here.

  • Crime News From Inside Seattle PD

    13:33 on 27 March, 2013 | 1 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Blogs, Jonah Spangenthal-Lee, Journalism, Journalism Innovation

    Crime in the Emerald City may not pay, but it is forging a career for local reporter/blogger Jonah Spangenthal-Lee. The lifelong Seattle resident found his niche in journalism almost by accident, while writing for the alt-weekly paper The Stranger as an intern from North Seattle Community College.

    “I still don’t really know how I ended up on the crime beat,” Spangenthal-Lee said in an e-mail interview. “The first few stories I wrote at The Stranger all happened to be cop or crime-related, and I started making contacts and figuring out the cops/court system through trial and error.”

    The 4-month internship led to a job covering the city’s crime beat, and for years he gained valuable experience and established many solid contacts reporting at crime scenes.  After parting ways with The Stranger, he wanted to continue crime reporting, but knew it would be difficult landing a position in a newsroom.

    Soon after, with “a ton of help” from Justin Carder, publisher of and Central District News founder Scott Durham, Spangenthal-Lee’s site was born. “A few other blogger/reporter friends also pitched in from time to time with posts on my site,” Spangenthal-Lee said.

    Creating his own news site did have advantages.

    “The editorial freedom that comes from running a mostly one-man show was fantastic, and operating without any sort of financial safety net, attorneys–or even petty cash to pay for things like court documents–really forced me to be resourceful about how I obtained and used information.”

    Spangenthal-Lee offered stories other media outlets didn’t have, by spending more time reading through police reports and by breaking stories sooner than the competition.

    “Being a small ‘independent’ operation also meant I could be a lot more agile with how and when I published (breaking news on Twitter from a crime scene hours before I’d ever get back to a computer to churn out a traditional inverted-pyramid story, for instance) but working 18 hour days and always having one ear tuned to the police scanner can take its toll.”

    “I worked hard to make sure I had stories or details no one else had and tried to inject a bit of personality into my posts as well,” he said.

    “It helped being able to break some good scoops, and that very few other reporters were combing through police records with the regularity I was, but I think just being present on the site–both in the comments section and over emails with readers–and putting out regular updates around the clock helped give readers a reason to keep coming back.” developed a small but dedicated fan base as the “go-to-place” for local crime news. Connecting with neighborhood blogs that linked to his coverage and a iPhone app all helped his site garner more local and national media attention.

    “Crime, however, does not pay,” he concluded. “Especially if you’re blogging about it.”

    He explained, “I tried to keep myself out of the advertising side of things because I didn’t want to risk compromising any editorial content. But from what I heard from the folks who tried oh so hard to sell ads for me, nobody wants to sell their product right alongside a story about a murder, car thefts, or other generally grim news.”

    And after dedicating his life to for more than a year, the opportunity arose to work alongside the very folks he covered, the Seattle Police Department.

    For the past year he has worked as a contractor blogging for the SPD Blotter page, a site started in 2008, which informs local residents of the crime news and information happening in the city with updated blogs and twitter feeds, also written by the detectives and officers themselves.

    Spangenthal-Lee seems like a natural fit for the blog, and he’s enjoyed the chance he’s been given.

    “It’s been a great experience working at the SPD so far. I’ve received a tremendous amount of support and freedom from the chiefs, my boss, my unit, and tons of other officers, detectives, sergeants, lieutenants, and captains throughout the department. I’ve been encouraged to keep doing things the way I’ve always done them.”

    Although, he’ll be the first to admit that in the beginning his transition wasn’t exactly smooth sailing among his new colleagues.

    “I’d be lying if I said everyone here was initially excited to have me on board, but I get that I come with some baggage and that cops have a lot of preconceived notions about reporters, much as reporters have a lot of preconceived notions about cops,” he said.

    “I’ve really had a good time here, though it was a risk for them and a risk for me, but I think it’s worked out pretty well so far.”

    Being the one contributing blogger on the Blotter site who isn’t a cop, Spangenthal-Lee provides readers with an alternative point of view on crime news. He hopes that will further build an audience and make the site the best source for crime and police news.

    “I think my background, having not been a cop, I can come at things from a different perspective than some of my co-workers, who’ve been in law enforcement for some time. I get excited to write about incidents, crimes, or police processes that might seem routine or boring to them.”

    His efforts have been written about in The Seattle Times. And he was given an award from the Washington Coalition for Open Government, which praised his philosophy that “If there’s information we can give to anyone, we should give it to everyone.”

    He got a lot of attention for a blog post entitled “Marijwhatnow? A Guide to Legal Marijuana in Seattle.”

    If Jonah Spangenthal-Lee’s story shows other aspiring reporters anything, it’s that finding the right niche for yourself in journalism is possible by not only working hard, but also taking chances.

    His advice:

    “Get well acquainted with Twitter, learn to write quickly, function on 6 hours of sleep, and be equipped to shoot your own photos and video, even if it’s just on your iPhone.  Find something you’re interested in writing about and write about it (assuming it’s something anyone else on the planet is interested in).

    “There are tons of free publishing platforms out there right now, so if you’ve got something to say about a topic write it up, post it, and Facebook and tweet the hell out of it. The more you do it, the more feedback you’ll get, and the better you’ll get. Probably.”

    In essence, Spangenthal-Lee is reporting about the Seattle Police Department from within the institution. Asked what he would say to people who are skeptical that any public agency can report honestly about itself, he answered philosophically:

    “I guess I’d just say that I hope people remain skeptical. We need to continually work to earn and maintain public trust and a healthy dose of skepticism is just more incentive to be as open and accurate with our information as possible. That said, some acknowledgement — when we do the right thing the right way — wouldn’t kill anybody, either.”

    (Patrick Fancher is a freelance writer in Corvallis, Oregon.)

    • Justin 14:40 on 27 March, 2013 Permalink

      Fair trade — I also got “a ton of help” from JSL figuring out how to cover crime in our neighborhood. The SPD media effort is a really interesting experiment. At times I hate that it creates news for the big media competitors in the city but as long as it is paired with continued investments in self-serve access to public crime information, I’m a fan!

  • NW Journalism Scholarships

    12:38 on 20 March, 2013 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: AAJA, Journalism Education, Journalism Scholarships, , Washington Coalition for Open Government,

    Deadlines are nearing for several Northwest journalism scholarship programs, including:

    AAJA Seattle

    Washington News Council

    Northwest Journalists of Color

    Washington Coalition for Open Government, which offers a $1,000 cash prize for the Washington State high school junior or senior who writes the winning essay about the importance of open government.

    Let us know of other opportunities.

  • 02/13/2012 Going Deeper than Google

    09:00 on 7 February, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    Bring your laptop and four media professionals will show you how to get the information you need through the web. A hands-on session that takes you beyond simple searches. Scheduled presenters include Kellie Cheadle, KING-TV; Kathy Gill, University of Washington; Cheryl Phillips, The Seattle Times; Matt Rosenberg, Public Data Ferret.

    Recommended that you read Seattle Journalism Commons’ coverage of a similar presentation with Cheryl Phillips on digging deeper into data

  • My Edmonds News lauded in Knight Digital Media Center

    15:03 on 12 February, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: My Edmonds News, Teressa Wippel

    Entrepreneurial journalists in the Pacific Northwest continue to draw attention for their innovative ideas.  The News Leadership 3.0 blog at the Knight Digital Media Center features the work of Teresa Wippel in creating and sustaining

    In addition to advertising, the site generates revenues from live internet streaming of local high school football and basketball games.

    Kudos to Wippel for her journalistic passion and dedication.

  • 02/06/2012 Beyond Journalism

    09:00 on 31 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    From researching, reporting and interviewing to writing, tech know-how and critical thinking skills, journalists make great employees in just about any communications job. And in this shifting ecomony many of us are moving in that direction. So how do you leverage your years in the news room in a new job market? What can journalists bring to public relations firms, tech start-ups and nonprofits (and what should we leave behind)? What are employers looking for and how do you adjust to a new career? Join us for a panel discussion with journalists in our region that have answered those questions for themselves. This session also includes one-on-one career change counseling.

  • 01/30/2012 Writing for SEO

    09:00 on 24 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: SEO

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    Search Engine Optimization: What it is, who does it well (and not so well) and how to make it work for you. Whether you’re a blogger, freelancer, journalism professor or newsroom reporter, everyone has to know about keywords, metadata and headlines that grab the attention of Google bots and humans alike. Learn tricks of the trade, ask those questions you’ve been afraid to ask and compete in headline writing contests with online journalists from about town in this hands-on session.

  • 01/23/2012 Photos for Phone with Josh Trujillo

    09:00 on 10 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Josh Trujillo

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    Want to take great pictures but don’t have a bulky, expensive SLR camera? Learn how to take impactful news photos with your mobile phone from award-winning photographer (and phonographer) Josh Trujillo.

  • 01/23/2012 Photos for Phone with Josh Trujillo

    09:00 on 10 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Josh Trujillo

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    Want to take great pictures but don’t have a bulky, expensive SLR camera? Learn how to take impactful news photos with your mobile phone from award-winning photographer (and phonographer) Josh Trujillo.

  • Direct Community action on behalf of Nourishing Networks

    13:24 on 15 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink

    Notes from Linda Benson

    From January 9 News Oasis/Nourishing Networks meeting

    The question was, “What are some ways to get individual community members to take direct action on behalf of Nourishing Networks?”

    • Plant food/seed bombs throughout the community (brand with Nourishing Network information)
    • Make mud balls filled with vegetable garden seeds that anyone can plant in their containers, gardens or yards
    • Create planter boxes or transform landscapes to grow fresh vegetables at local restaurants and municipal locations.  Invite patrons to help maintain.
    • Promote the 10% Campaign diverting food dollars to local food production.  Challenge businesses and residents to participate and to report their actions that can be used to measure impact and the new capacity for local food.
    • Create an easy way for citizens to share their needs and their stories; i.e. telephone message line, on-line tool, etc.
  • Engaging Journalists and the Public in Hunger/Nouishment

    13:20 on 15 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink

    Notes from Parker Lindner

    From January 9 News Oasis/Nourishing Networks meeting

    Our discussion covered various ways to engage people with the issue..  We talked about how to encourage participation  from journalists and the general public.

    Some ideas included:

    • Locate journalism teachers and proposing this as a writing focus.
    • Establish  points of access, collect data.
    • Share information on the hunger/nourishment issues and challenges in our community. What are the facts about hunger and nourishment or the lack of it?  Where is it? What are the causes?
    • Read ‘between the lines’ in interpreting data for example from use of  free and reduced lunch programs.
    • Ferret out underserved groups such as students, families and senior citizens.
    • Expose the network of service organizations working on the issue.
    • Use community technology centers as touch points.  This is where underserved populations come to get connected.
    • Look for existing blogs and web sites. In social networks, cross posting, commenting, sharing and search engine optimization are the way ideas are amplified.

    We also discussed the notion that the stories must be able to grab attention.  They must be brief. We don’t think people will read long tomes.  Instead we could build a simple structure for exposing personal stories – both of people with needs and of people/groups who are inventing (taking responsibility for)  providing  solutions.

    Also, consider the ‘master birder’ model. Train a set of individuals who then commit to training others.

  • Building a News Oasis to end hunger in Puget Sound

    09:14 on 12 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: food deserts, King County Library Services, mobile learning, , USDA

    News Oasis post imageBy now, most people know about the epidemic of hunger. Here in the US, 1 out of 5 kids are going to bed without a solid meal — meaning every student you know is sitting next to someone in class who has to ignore the sound of their empty stomach while trying to concentrate on what the teacher is saying.

    Last year the USDA released a map and downloadable dataset of the 6,501 food deserts in America. These are places marked as “low income” and “low access” where at least a fifth of the population lives at or below the poverty line, and there isn’t a supermarket within a one-mile radius (or within a 10-mile radius in rural areas). There is an estimated 13.5 million people, 6.5 million children, nationwide who have little or no access to stores selling healthful food based on correlation with the 2000 census.

    Local news coverage of the hunger in Puget Sound is not necessarily void, but you don’t see anyone covering the “hunger” beat like they do business, sports, or entertainment. There are interesting pockets, such as Carol Smith’s story for Investigate West, where she profiled our own backyard food desert along South Seattle’s Duwamish River. Smith found that people are resorting to eating out of the river, despite the government warnings of toxic PCBs, heavy metals, and other contaminants that have resulted in a 5 year lower average life expectancy in the area. Due to a partnership with KUOW to do a radio piece, and features in places like Business Insider, her story brought in a significant traffic spike and increase in Twitter followers. However, it’s important to keep in mind that Carol’s work was only made possible by a health journalism fellowship from the California Endowment out of USC Annenberg, and doing the work she did requires a lot of effort and directed intention.

    A vital part of the mission of Journalism that Matters and the Seattle Journalism Commons is to enhance the information needs of our community and help ensure that our important stories are being told. This week our network took a critical first step by holding an all day summit in Issaquah with the aim of creating a “news oasis” that fosters vital information around hunger in Puget sound.

    Valuable local stakeholders were present in four key groups:

    Community organizers, journalists, researchers, and business modelers

    The participants:
    Linda Benson, Vice President, Community Initiatives, Hopelink | Karma Ruder, Director of Community Collaboration, Center for Ethical Leadership | Anne Stadler, Independent Civic & Social Organization Professional, Producer, KING TV (ret.) | James Whitfield, President, Leadership Eastside | Jan La Fond, Convener, Redmond Nourishing Network | Marsha Iverson, King County Library System, Public Relations Specialist | Jo Anderson Cavinta — Diversity program coordinator. Outreach Services. King County Library System | Parker Lindner — Freelance | Ann Zavitkovsky — community enthusiast | Carole Carmichael, Assistant Managing Editor, Seattle Times | Mike Fancher, Executive editor, Seattle Times (ret.), co-founder Seattle Journalism Commons, Journalism That Matters board member | Michelle Ferrier, Associate Professor, Elon University, North Carolina, Journalism That Matters board member. Founder of | Sheetal Agarwal, Doctoral student studying political communication and technology, Research Assistant, Instructor at University of Washington, Department of Communication | Cori Benson, UW Bothell, intern with Nourishing Networks. | Jacob Caggiano, digital strategist and co-founder Seattle Journalism Commons | Rae Levine, Rae Levine Consulting, Co-op consultant. Northwest Cooperative Development | Erin MacDougall, Program Manager Healthy Eating and Active Living, Public Health – Seattle & King County | Dave Ortiz, Cascadia Community College | Peggy Holman, Co-founder, Journalism That Matters, co-founder Seattle Journalism Commons

    Using conversational practices that support productive self-directed co-mingling, many diverse stakeholders with common goals and interested were introduced and immediately started bubbling with ideas and determination. We were sure to make it known who was absent from the room, mainly those affected by hunger, as well as young people, who were identified as potential leaders that are critical for a movement like this to succeed. It was pointed out that there are still silos that exist where community organizations and non-profits who work directly with the hungry are not interacting enough with the “good food movement” — that is supporters of policies aimed in bringing more local organic food to the dinner table.

    Ideas and Examples

    It was clear that the best thing we can do is amplify efforts that are already successful, and use those lessons to spawn new ideas that are more likely to succeed. Some existing models mentioned were:

    The 10 Percent Campaign — Hosted by North Carolina State University, a campaign to encourage farmers, businesses and communities to pledge to spend 10% of their food budgets locally. Their surveys indicate they have 4516 people and 500 businesses who have spent $12,248,980 locally since they began.

    South Whidbey — Strong community networks like The Whidbey Institute, South Whidbey Commons, South Whidbey Tilth, and an upcoming Thriving Communities conference are alive and well in that part of the region.

    The Seattle Happiness Initiative — a project of Sustainable Seattle, inspired by Gross National Happiness index used in Bhutan, and the desire to base economic decisions on not just GDP, but overall well-being. The SHI has been endorsed by The Seattle City Council and is now spreading nationally at

    New ideas that we could experiment with:

    Mobile News Oasis — We were lucky to have Jo Anderson Cavinta, the Diversity Program coordinator for King County Library Systems attend a session and talk about their new mobile library vans that will deliver free computer access to areas in need. Why not take advantage of the parking lot space at churches and food banks and bring computer access to where people who need them are getting their meals? There could also be a student or community reporter on site that conducts interviews / training / publishing on the spot, as well as nutrition advice, snacking tips etc. At the Greensboro Create or Die 2 Unconference, Journalism that Matters helped incubate the Wake Up Tour, a bio-diesel powered van which provides on the ground mobile media literacy training.

    Food Moving Technology — During the 3rd Random Hacks of Kindness there were teams who set out to make apps that allow establishments who throw out food to put out a call for pickup instead. Three groups started a prototype, Bring the Food, Moving Food (Seattle based), and FoodMovr. I’m hoping there’s potential in jumpstarting this back up again, with the help of organizations like Nourishing Networks who can adopt it in their workflow. It appears Bring the Food is the furthest along on development while the other two haven’t shown much activity since June, but maybe that can change with a few emails 🙂

    SeedBombs — This came from Michelle Ferrier who was visiting us from North Carolina’s research triangle. Her startup has a guerrilla marketing tactic of placing little plantable mud balls with seeds in them that are wrapped with business cards that advertise her “locally grown news” site. The idea of packaging food and leaving it for others to enjoy as a random act of kindness kind of rings a similar tune to the Ben’s Bells project. You could weave a community narrative together by leaving a number code that publishes a tweet or blog post via text message from the random food package recipient.

    No Rooftop Left Behind — I brought up my frustration that so many rooftops are being underutilized as potential gardens or places to install solar panels, and feel there should be a campaign to make use of every naked rooftop in the country.

    Stockbox Outreach — A team of business leaders are trying to tackle the the food desert situation by starting up a chain of “mini mini marts” that serve fresh food out of empty shipping containers. Stockbox Grocers raised over $20,000 on Kickstarter to prototype a popup store in Deldridge, which was open September – November 2011. They are now working to launch a permanent store in Spring 2012, and it would be great to load up and disseminate good information as well as good food.

    Challenges and opportunities

    Some folks in the room wanted to see more work done reporting and addressing underlying policy issues that affect the state of hunger (food prices, tariffs, corporate farm subsidies, etc.) as well as the quality of food available to those in need (healthy, organic, local), and ensuring the support of sustainable farming practices into the future. There are also questions of structural bias when you have large agricultural giants (i.e. The ConAgra Foods Foundation) contributing to programs like Feeding America.

    This led to two key discussions: 1. When you’re hungry, your first order of business is to eat, and that is the priority.   2. Focusing too much on policy and pointy headed experts alienates people and makes them feel less welcome or able to participate in the movement. As noted by James Whitfield of Leadership Eastside, “It’s really really big, and also really really small” and it’s important to focus on the emotional stories while also keeping sight on the broader overlapping issues.

    Another interesting challenge is coming up with strategies to address cultural barriers, not just structural ones. A survey in Redmond was mentioned where police found that teens would rather be arrested for stealing than face the stigma of admitting reliance on social services to get by. Many people who actually qualify for food assistance don’t even use it because of the shame that comes with it. To overcome this, it was suggested that the news oasis we are trying to build is one which transforms the community story (narrative) about food and hunger from consuming & unequal distribution (lack) to the gift exchanges happening in:

    •    the food system

    •    human capacity building initiatives for change that are linked to needed policy changes

    •    the evolution of community interdependence

    Commitments and future development

    The day ended with positive aspirations and each person writing down a single commitment to take back and start working on. On the support side, Nourishing Networks (@nourishnetworks) has launched several community chapters and is enthusiastic about bringing in more entrepreneurs into the scene. On the policy side, Erin MacDougall, was there on behalf of the Healthy Eating and Active Living Program for Seattle & King County, and is quite passionate about taking on the systemic challenges that lead to difficulty accessing good healthy food. Our agreed focus for the news oasis is to connect community and journalists around issues of community need/civic importance to:
    •    Tell stories that matter because they link to felt need in community.
    •    Support community members to tell their own stories (create, disseminate and use their own stories) and link them to the “big” stories about the whole system.
    •    Reach out to professional journalists to ampl

  • News Oasis/Nourishing Networks January 9 Meeting

    15:14 on 11 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Hopelink, , nourishing networks

    Quick Summary of Outcomes
    January 10, 2012

    Anne, with her fabulous ability to find the essence of story named the throughline of the story we want told:
    At every level, how do we take responsibility for nourishing ourselves and others?

    Others supplemented with:
    • We start with food and why there’s urgency.
    • We tell the “big” story — context, policy, etc., and the “small” stories — the actions happening everywhere to address the need.
    • We tell stories of possibility that highlight strengths and opportunities because they inspire people to get involved in solving the challenges they face.

    Next steps for the core team:
    • Connect everyone and get out the notes. (This quick summary from Peggy, edited by Anne, will be followed by a story from Jacob)
    • Follow up with those who were interested but couldn’t attend. (Peggy, Anne, Karma)
    • Convene the core team shortly — Karma, Anne, Peggy, David Ortiz, and Parker Lindner have volunteered. If you are interested, please let me know.
    • Follow up on the KCLS bus with the Issaquah Nourishing Network idea – a bus with computer equipment, a nutritionist, food, and a journalist. In a sense, an omnibus, with whatever is needed. (Karma, Jo)

    Some other activities people stepped up to pursue:

    • Cori Benson blogging (perhaps with Seattle Journalism Commons and/or the Seattle Times)
    • Convening stakeholders with reporters at the Seattle Times (Anne and Peggy will explore with Carole)
    • Jacob Caggiano and Karma Ruder working on an app to connect surplus food to those who need it.
    • Linda Benson will organize an effort to support community storytelling in her five areas of community activity.
    Any other items others want to add?

    Focus of the news oasis:
    Connecting community and journalists around issues of community need/civic importance to:
    • Tell stories that matter because they link to felt need in community.
    • Support community members to tell their own stories (create, disseminate and use their own stories) and link them to the “big” stories about the whole system.
    • Reach out to professional journalists to amplify the stories, big and small (strategy: bring stakeholders to them).

    The connection between the News Oasis and the idea of nourishing ourselves and others:
    A news oasis transforms the community story (narrative) about food and hunger from consuming & unequal distribution (lack) to the gift exchanges happening in:
    • the food system
    • human capacity building initiatives for change that are linked to needed policy changes
    • the evolution of community interdependence

  • 01/09/2012, Building Community in the Digital Age

    15:42 on 4 January, 2012 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Amy Duncan, , , ,

    Tickets and info via Eventbrite page for the Society of Professional Journalists (Western Washington Chapter) Continuing Education Series

    Join Tracy Record of the West Seattle Blog, Evonne Benedict of KING 5 Seattle and Amy Duncan of My Green Lake and MSNBC’s Breaking News as they discuss what it takes for journalists to build, grow and sustain great news communities in the kick-off to the 2012 SPJ Continuing Ed Series Monday at 7 p.m. at Fisher Plaza. Moderated by Monica Guzman of GeekWire.

  • Holiday Scoop 2011 -- Dec. 9th

    15:43 on 5 December, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink

    (tickets event is now free. Info via Eventbrite page)

    It’s back. Join your friends and colleagues as we roll out the red carpet for Seattle’s biggest journalist party of the year: The Holiday Scoop 2011.

    Our 2nd annual all-media holiday party will bring together television, radio, online and print journalists. All Puget Sound-based newsroom staffers and former staffers invited.

    Dec. 9, 2011

    The Last Supper Club

    Pioneer Square

    Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

    Ages 21 and over

    Let’s celebrate the holidays, great journalism and the successes of our local news organizations with emcees Lori Matsukawa of KING TV and Dave Ross of KIRO FM.

    Nosh on hors d’oeuvres and drink at our no-host bar.

    This event is not sponsored by any company or organization, but is being funded by private donations from your journalism colleagues, program ad sales and your donation of $20 per person. The suggested donation will rise to $30 at the door on the night of the event.

    New this year: Caption contest. Entries cost $10, and you can pay the entry fee in advance or at the party.

    Also new: Holiday Karaoke Throwdown. Does your newsroom have the pipes for our karaoke showdown? Individuals or groups can enter to compete our holiday carol karaoke competition for $40. Winner gets bragging rights.

    All proceeds will benefit the Northwest Journalists of Color Scholarship, a 25-year program for talented college students who aspire to become professional journalists.

  • GeekWire Gala: The Year in Geek -- Dec. 8th

    15:42 on 5 December, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink

    (Tickets and info via Eventbrite page)

    Join hundreds of movers-and-shakers in the tech community, as we take a moment to celebrate “geeks who give back.”  We’ll toast the men and women of the 2012 GeekWire calendar, and  Newsmakers of the Year, but that’s not all.  Enjoy calendar-themed activities, spirited contests, techie give-aways and the geekiest of chic nights on the town, not to mention your own complimentary copy of the coveted calendar.

    What to expect: The evening will be festive without being a formal sit-down affair; hors d’oeuvres will be passed and we’ll feature a tasty buffet.  “Heavy apps” include chicken satay, teriyaki meatball lollipops, spanikopita, mac and cheese, and more.  With your admission you’ll also receive a drink ticket from GeekWire– but wait, there’s more!  The first 100 guests to arrive with a donation for the Toys for Tots drive will also receive an extra cocktail, as will those who encounter Stormtroopers from a galaxy far, far away.

    The evening’s activities: Take a swag-studded tour of the Year in Geek.  From National Umbrella Day (February 10), to National Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be with you), play to win fabulous prizes. Attire for this gala? No need to get formal. Fancy if you like, and flying your GeekWire red, white and black is a bonus. Fame and prizes await our “best dressed guests.”

  • ONA - SPJ Seattle Meetup with David Horsey 11/16

    19:52 on 16 November, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: David Horsey

    via ONA-SPJ group on

    We’re excited to have been able to reschedule two-time Pulitzer winner David Horsey, who will join us at the next ONA-SPJ Seattle Meetup Wednesday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. at Jillian’s, where he’ll talk about transforming his art and journalism from print to digital. He’ll discuss how his craft of cartooning has changed, how he’s added blogging and even slideshows to his storytelling, his experiences as a nationally syndicated cartoonist with Hearst, and where he sees it all going. See more of his work at

    This is our fifth in a series of the #Newsnext meetups, where we’re talking to interesting locals working in the digital space. If you’re interested in gathering with writers, editors, photographers, producers, developers, designers, engineers and anyone else with an interest in the production of news, Jillian’s will have a cash bar and some great space to meet with like-minded digital professionals.

  • Seattle student press rights hanging in the balance

    13:53 on 11 November, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Ballard High School, Casey Henry, Education, Garfield High School, John Bowen, Kate Clark, Kathy Schrier, Katie Kennedy, Mike Hiestand, Nathan Hale, Phyllis Fletcher, Roosevelt, Seattle, Seattle School District, Student Press Rights Commission, Susan Enfield, Washington Journalism Education Association, Washington State School Directors Association

    Seattle area students and advisers meet Nov.8 to celebrate and discuss future plans.

    by John Bowen and Kathy Schrier from the Washington Journalism Education Association to the Student Press Rights Commission blog

    Principals will not have a chance to prior review Seattle School District journalism students because the school board recently withdrew its proposed and controversial policy change.

    “As a former journalism teacher, it is important for me — as I know it is for our Board — that we uphold our practice of trusting our teachers to educate our students on the rights and responsibilities that come with freedom of expression and a free press,” Interim Superintendent of Schools, Susan Enfield, a former journalism teacher and adviser, said in a press release.

    Supporters of the existing free expression policy will now have a year to convince the Seattle School District board to keep its hands off and continue to encourage students to make final decisions and have responsibility for content.

    During the first week of November as part of a system-wide policy overhaul, school officials announced they would seek to change a 2o-year policy of allowing students to make final decisions of content without prior review. The Washington State School Directors Association had recommended the new policy.

    Washington students, advisers, media groups and citizens mounted a public and active four-day campaign reporting about and speaking against the policy change.

    The press release indicated the school district would revisit the issue in 2012 to see how a policy change might fit with community values.

    Students and supporters met Nov. 8 to celebrate and plan

    Student journalists from five of Seattle’s high schools (Ballard, Garfield, Nathan Hale, Roosevelt and West Seattle) met Nov. 8 in the Nathan Hale journalism room to debrief following a promise by Seattle interim Superintendent Susan Enfield to leave unchanged the district’s current student press rights policy. The meeting followed a four-day, whirlwind campaign to thwart the passage of Policy 3220, a controversial, restrictive student press policy.

    The students came together to celebrate the immediate victory, as well as to talk about how they must work together to make sure this doesn’t happen in the future. The discussion focused on how the district policy-making process appears to be badly flawed, especially since some school board members seem to be ready to approve policies they haven’t even read.

    Students plan to create a Facebook page and a website to keep in touch with each other, as well as to co-produce an article and possible insert about procedures used to decide policies in their school district. Students hope to run the piece in all their papers at about the same time. A coalition of Seattle student journalists is now in the works with plans to meet regularly.

    Applauded for their efforts in fighting back the passage of Policy 3220 were Katie Kennedy and Kate Clark, Ballard High School editors, who went on the attack with community flyers, letters to school board members and on-air interviews with local talk radio hosts. The group also applauded NPR reporter Phyllis Fletcher, KPLU-FM Seattle (who was in the room covering the meeting), for first discovering the proposed policy change and alerting Mike Hiestand of the Student Press Law Center, who in turn contacted the Washington Journalism Education Association.

    Fletcher shared how she discovered the information on the policy. She explained how, as part of her regular preparation for covering upcoming school board meetings, she looks at the agenda and tries to become familiar with the items for consideration. A red flag went up when she discovered the language in Policy 3220 under consideration.

    Clearly, her quick action made all the difference in preventing its passage.

    Garfield High School adviser Casey Henry shared with the group a late afternoon message to Seattle journalism advisers from Susan Enfield, in which she apologized for the “consternation” caused by the whole ordeal and promised to make sure any future revisions to the scholastic press policy in Seattle will include input from media advisers.

    Students in the room added they should be included, as well, and intend to make that known to the superintendent and the board.

    This was a close call for student journalists in Seattle Schools, with lessons to be learned about staying vigilant. In fact, the students discussed creating a session for the 2012 National JEA/NSPA Spring Convention in Seattle, a case study on four frantic days for student journalists and their supporters in Seattle that fortunately ended positively.

    Coverage from Seattle-area media

    Announcing the proposed change
    • Stop the presses, let the principal check them first
    • Seattle school board moves to censor student newspapers
    • Proposed Seattle school-newspaper policy raises censorship concerns
    • Students say Seattle school board threatens censorship

    Announcing the withdrawal of the proposed changes
    • Seattle public schools beats hasty retreat
    • Students say school board ‘setting the stage for censorship’
    • Proposed ‘censorship’ policy for school newspaper withdrawn (Ballard High School)
    • Ballard High newspaper editor-in-chief Kate Clark on her censorship fight with the Seattle school board
    • School board withdraws controversial proposal: free speech maintained for students
    • Seattle public schools withdraws controversial student newspaper oversight proposal
    • Schools back off on policing student papers
    • KUOW-FM late afternoon story/interview with Ballard editors Kate and Katie
    • The Stranger

    Other coverage
    • How Seattle journalist got school censorship scoop
    • Seattle school board pulls controversial publications proposal, will revisit in 2012
    • Seattle School District seeks to remove forum policy for prior review
    • Seattle school board pulls controversial publications proposal, will revisit in 2012

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