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  • Seattle fashion bloggers looking sharp in Pacific Northwest Magazine

    11:27 am on September 4, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags:,, it'smydarlin'.com,, Pacific Northwest Magazine, , Seattle Times,,

    The Seattle Journalism Commons includes a list of noteworthy local blogs and news sites that are redefining news and information in the Greater Seattle area. Pacific Northwest Magazine highlights a category not yet on the list — fashion bloggers.

    The delightful article by Janet I. Tu, with stylish photos by Ellen M. Banner, says style bloggers are making their mark nationally. “In Seattle, too — not exactly known as fashion central, though it’s probably fairer to say we’re practical even when fashion-conscious — style bloggers are making their presence felt,” the story says.

    In addition to featuring several local bloggers, the article includes a list of style blogs  from around here:


    It’s My Darlin’

    Seattle a la Mode

    The Emerald Closet

    Lindsay Living

    Bora Bora Style

    Hey Pretty Thing

    Abiola (pronounce Ah-bee-aw-la), creator of Bora Bora Style, posted a note about the magazine article on her site. She says:

    “It’s jarring and somewhat liberating how much weight style bloggers hold in the world of fashion today, but why shouldn’t we, we’re someone to know! Fashion gives us the good stuff, the wearable art we’re inspired by, but it’s when you take that wearable art and make it your own that it becomes style, and that’s what we all want to see – ‘style on a girl like me'(as in all of us women occupying this earth), hints the birth of bloggers. Gotta love us.”

    Whether you are interested in fashion or not, this magazine piece reveals yet another aspect of Seattle’s vibrant emerging media scene. Let us know these entrepreneurs talk about how they are doing and what others can learn from their endeavors.

    Let us know if you’d like to attend a discussion with these entrepreneurs of how they are doing and what advice they can offer.

  • Seattle couple completes 50-state newspaper tour

    4:37 pm on August 16, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: AEJMC, Frank Blethen, Paul Steinle, Sara Brown, Seattle Times, Who Needs Newspapers?

    Seattleites Paul Steinle and Sara Brown have completed a year-long road trip to answer the question, “Who needs newspapers?” They presented their findings last week at the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (AEJMC) national convention in St. Louis.

    The findings of their 50-state tour are available on the Who Needs Newspapers? website. The bottom line, Steinle told the AEJMC audience, is “Newspapers are not sitting in hospice.” They are transforming themselves for the digital world with multimedia content on multiple platforms.

    The husband and wife drove a truck pulling a fifth-wheel trailer across the country. They visited one newspaper in each state with three goals:

    1. Provide the newspaper industry fresh information about how change is being managed — with an emphasis on what works and what doesn’t work;
    2. Clarify the value of local newspapers for the public; and
    3. Collect useful insights for students considering journalism careers.

    The WNN website includes reports from each state. In Washington, Steinle and Brown interviewed Seattle Times Publisher Frank Blethen, Executive Editor David Boardman andother  senior editors. Videotapes of the interviews are on the site.

    Each state report includes a large amount of data about the publication, including staff size, circulation, web traffic and key contacts. The project is an amazing accomplishment.

    As for who needs newspapers, the website acknowledges it is an ironic rhetorical question. “But the fact is, since 1704 when the Boston News-Letter hit the streets, the news agenda in the United States has been largely dictated by the local newspaper industry. Newspapers play a critical civic role: local newspaper reporters are the source of most of the original enterprise reporting in the USA.”

    Brown, Ph.D., is a veteran of the newspaper industry as a human resource professional, management trainer, columnist and educator. She was vice president of human resources at The Columbian in Vancouver, Washington, and manager of organization development at the Los Angeles Times. She holds an M.S. from the University of San Francisco and a doctorate in human and organization systems from the Fielding Graduate Institute.

    Steinle is a veteran journalist, news media manager and journalism educator. He was the president of UPI and the Financial News Network; a news director at KING-TV in Seattle, and associate provost at Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon. Steinle has an M.B.A. from Harvard and an M.S. from Syracuse University.

    WNN is an initiative of Valid Sources, a Seattle-based non-profit organization formed to “identify and promote excellent, ethically-balanced journalism.” The organization says of itself:

    Our mission is to identify models of excellence, which aspire to seek the truth and report it, to document these activities and to raise these profiles. This organization seeks to fulfill two goals:

    • Elevate the public’s understanding of the value of ethically-balanced journalism, and
    • Inform the journalism community of best journalism practices.
  • New local partners for Seattle Times

    5:02 pm on July 15, 2011 | 0 Comment Permalink
    Tags: Bob Payne, Capitol Hill Seattle Blog, , Inside Bainbridge, J-Lab, Justin Carder, Kate Bergman, My Everett News, News Partner Network, Next Door Media, Northwest Asian Weekly, Northwest Vietnamese News, , Public Eye Northwest, Seattle Times, Seattle's Child, , West Seattle Blog

    The Seattle Times announced it has added three websites to its News Partner Network. They are Inside Bainbridge, My Everett News and Seattle’s Child. All together, The Times now has forty partners in three categories:

    The Times launched the network in August 2009, with a relatively small grant from J-Lab. At the time there were just a handful of local partners, but they included real online news pioneers such as Tracy Record of the West Seattle Blog, Kate and Cory Bergman of Next Door Media and Justin Carder of the Capitol Hill Seattle Blog.

    The network has grow remarkably. I’m unaware of any newspaper in the country that has done as much as The Times to build such a collaborative network. A list of success stories on The Times’ site includes cross-linking to stories, photo swapping, training on topics such as mobile reporting and video editing. It also mentions two collaborative news projects, one on homeless families and the other on graffiti.

    The Times says it wants to establish and build cooperative relationships with other news sites. If you have questions or suggestions to include in the network, contact Bob Payne – bpayne at seattletimes dot com, Times editor for partnerships and audience engagement.

    The News Partner Network is a prime example of what’s working in the Seattle area news and information ecosystem. Other examples are included in the State of the Media section of the Seattle Journalism Commons. We invite you to submit other examples.

    P.S. In the interest of full disclosure, I worked at The Times for 30 years, but all of this wonderful work happened well after I retired in 2008.

  • Building alliances for investigative journalism

    10:49 am on June 2, 2011 | 2 comments Permalink
    Tags: collaborative journalism, Investigate West, investigative reporting, , KUOW, Sandy Rowe, Seattle Times, Shorenstein Center

    Sandy Rowe, former editor of The Oregonian, makes the case for collaboration in local investigative reporting in a new discussion paper for the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy. She writes:

    Growing evidence suggests that collaborations and partnerships between new and established news organizations, universities and foundations may be the overlooked key for investigative journalism to thrive at the local and state levels. These partnerships, variously and often loosely organized, can share responsibility for content creation, generate wider distribution of stories and spread the substantial cost of accountability journalism.

    Rowe calls for collaboration among traditional and emerging digital, print and broadcast news organizations, as well as higher education and interested citizens. If she had her own 30 years as an editor to do over again, she says, she would expand her vision beyond her own newsroom.

    “It did not occur to me that I should assume a responsibility broader than my own newsroom for the engagement of the community around questions of public policy integrity and public policy leadership.”

    In addition to laying out specific ideas for action, she offers lessons on motivations, organization, funding, and culture and values. And, she adds this overall vision:

    In a do-over I would work to change established newsroom culture by building alliances for in- depth and investigative reporting with universities, rivals, citizens and, potentially, philanthropists. I would make this work a major part of my own or a managing editor’s job description. I would focus the work much more on the outcomes of our journalism, which is after all what citizens care about. We would measure success through a clear-eyed assessment of the stories done, the distribution they received, the range of tools and platforms used for that, the engagement of citizens with the work and the impact or actions generated by the work. If we did not create value along those criteria, then we would know we were not fulfilling our mission.

    The Seattle area has seen some promising examples of collaborative investigative reporting. Examples include:

    The Times and KUOW teaming up to report on the injuries and disabilities caused combat soldiers carrying to much weight in their packs.

    InvestigateWest and KING 5 TV teaming up on an in-depth look at air safety in the skies over Washington state.

    Rowe’s paper makes a powerful argument for building extensively on these foundations.

  • Ben Huh aims his harpoon at big breaking news

    12:48 pm on May 25, 2011 | 3 comments Permalink
    Tags: , future of journalism, Moby Dick Project, online news, , Pulitzer Prize, Seattle Times,

    Cheezburger Network CEO Ben Huh is advancing some ideas he broached in a recent appearance in Seattle. In a new blog post, Huh addresses the question, “Why are  we still consuming news like it’s 1899?”

    Huh’s overall assessment is blunt: the experience of consuming news sucks.

    Even though it’s been more than 15 years since the Internet became a news destination, journalists and editors are still trapped in the print and TV world of message delivery.

    The traditional methods of news-writing, such as the reverse pyramid, the various “editions” of news pose big limitation on how news is reported and consumed. Unfortunately, internet-based changes such as reverse-chronological blogging of news, inability to archive yesterday’s news, poor commenting quality, live-blogging, and others have made news consumption an even more frustrating experience.

    Huh got some push back when he spoke about these concerns to #NewsNext, a collaboration of the Seattle chapters of the Online News Association (ONA) and Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) on May 16. After proclaiming that it was no longer the job of the journalist to tell people what’s true or not, Jacob Caggiano, who covered the event for the Seattle Journalism Commons, reported there was “the inevitable debate about broccoli versus ice cream.”

    (More …)

  • Report – Hacks/Hackers Seattle & Knight-Mozilla News Innovation Challenge

    11:20 am on May 15, 2011 | 5 comments Permalink
    Tags: Al-Jazeera, BBC, hacks/hackers, html5, knight foundation, Marian Liu, mozilla foundation, Sally James, Seattle Times, The Boston Globe

    Mozilla is best known for Firefox, the open source darling loved by millions which showed us that a browser is more than just a way to load websites, it’s a way to customize your experience of the web itself. Under new direction from Mark Surman, Mozilla is growing new legs to go beyond Firefox. They recently launched #Drumbeat as an effort to do more than just build portals, they are now seeking to change the flesh and bones of the internet itself to make it more open, accessible, and free (see project examples from

    It was recently announced that Mozilla received a hefty sum of money from the Knight Foundation to bring journalism along for the ride.

    The three year Knight-Mozilla News Challenge dubbed #MoJo (for Mozilla + Journalism) is now in full throttle with five news partners on board (BBC, Al-Jazeera, Boston Globe, Zeit Online, and The Guardian) who will host five fellows with full salary to innovate from inside the newsroom. 10 more fellows will come along the way in the next coming years, but until then, the heat is on and challenge submissions are underway.

    Mozilla asked me to link up with the Seattle chapter of Hacks/Hackers, an organization that shares a similar MoJo hybrid theory of bringing together journalists (hacks) + technologists (hackers) with the goal of changing news for the better. One week later we threw together a sold out Brainstorm 2011 that brought in journalists and technologists throughout the city who came to mash up ideas and enter the challenge. (More …)

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