The mission of this group is finding the soul of journalism and America in the 21st century.

– Sue Ellen Christian, Asst. Prof. of Journalism,Western Michigan University

Journalism That Matters fosters, sustains, and serves the values, principles and purposes of journalism by, among other means, convening, connecting, inspiring, educating and supporting the people who are shaping the news and information ecology.

The future of journalism centers around the power of storytelling to create healthy communities.

Journalism That Matters cultivates “healthy journalists”, renewing the inner life of the journalist, embracing all forms of media engagement, preparing the next generation of journalists with an eye towards the emerging citizen journalist. JTM members are working hard to invent a new economic model. As one JTM mash-up participant put it, “Rather than further compromise the work, it’s time to separate journalism from its current funding sources and find a new model.”

The New News Ecology is the information exchange amongst public, government and institutions that informs inspires, engages, and activates the community. JTM  cornerstone concepts of the new news ecology include:

  • Journalism as a conversation – a groundbreaking shift from journalism as a lecture
  • Shaping a new “cultural narrative” – Recovering the mythic role of journalists as conveners and navigators through a changing world prepares them to support communities in shaping a new national “master narrative” for our times.
  • High tech/high touch journalism – Whether on the web or in the café, new storytelling forms are emerging that engage us on cell phones and iPods, and in gathering places with food, music and the arts.
  • Ready, Fire, Aim – A strategy of “just do it,” moving from idea (ready) to implementation (fire) and then watching the results and adjusting (aim).   This formula creates rapid experimentation and learning and avoids analysis paralysis.
  • Expanding the questions we ask – Adding to the normal who, what, where, when, how, and why, asking questions like “What’s possible now?” expands stories beyond simple information gathering into the realms of inspiration and hope.