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Published byGarret Kilburn
Modified over 2 years ago
Civic Journalism The Role of Newspapers in Building Citizenship
Press Challenges Profit pressures Internet Bad journalistic habits Government regulation
New Questions: Who is a journalist? What is journalism?
New Trends: Interactive journalism Participatory journalism Citizen journalism
Civic Journalism Restore good habits Build reader connections Get better stories Build better citizens
Journalism Today Blurred lines –Reporting & Commentary –Entertainment & News Difficulty getting it right Serving elites vs. citizens Out of touch with public Commercial > sensational
Bad Habits Act rushed Hover with notebook Ask loaded questions Expect fast answers Listen for quick quote Show up only for problems Corrupt behavior
Civic Journalism Aspirations Retain watch dog Abandon attack dog Add guide dog
Civic Election Coverage Avoid < horse race polls Focus > voter issues Frame > hiring decisions
Philadelphia Inquirer Mayors Race
Pew Center for Civic Journalism Funded 120 projects Tracked 650 projects Trained 4,000 journalists Awarded 30 Batten Awards Interactive journalism
Computer kiosks > Community surveys
NHPR Budget Builder
Definition: Civic Journalism News that citizens need to: Learn about issues, events Make civic decisions Participate in a democracy
Civic Toolbox New definitions of news New sources of news New interactions with readers Mental checklist
What is News? Content audits: : Government News < 38% Entertainment News > 380% Scandal News > 300 %
Civic Techniques –DONT: Keep score Focus on conflict –DO: Cover solutions Interview all stakeholders
Savannahs Vision 2010
Civic Attributes: Entry points for citizen input - task force Reported solutions Build civic capacity –Action plan –Non-profit foundation
Civic Response: 1,100 reader calls $200,000 donations 50 tons food 8,000 toys Thousands volunteer hours
News as Conflict Internal vs. External –Conflict in Values –Not Conflict of People
Civic Mapping List pre-conceived ideas Diversify Sources Catalysts Connectors Watch for stereotypes Hold conversations not interviews Define terms Find master narratives
Learn more: A Journalistss Toolbox (4 videos) Tapping Civic Life booklet
Taking Back Our Neighborhoods
Civic Listening Data Crunching Community Poll Citizen Advisors Town Halls
Charlottes Civic Tools TV and radio partners Neighborhood advisors Town hall meetings Success stories Needs lists for each area
Charlotte Observers Needs List
What we know: Triggers civic behavior Increases knowledge Builds credibility Citizens get it Builds civic capacity Builds reporting capacity
Master Narratives Covering the Noise Vs. Covering the Silences
The New City
Mental Checklist How do you position people? As color or furniture that you move around? Or as a citizen capable of action?
Mental Checklist Do you only raise awareness? Can a story invite input, ideas? Can it help readers do something with the information?
Mental Checklist Have you talked to all stakeholders? Do you report more than two sides of the story? Do the pros and cons get you the real story?
Mental Checklist Do you report internal and external conflict? Do you help people see possible choices and consequences of those choices? Do you examine conflicting values?
Mental Checklist Do you advance solutions? Report what has worked elsewhere? Invite community brainstorming?
Mental Checklist Do you invite participation? How can people respond? Are there entry points for input?
2001 Pew Poll
Want more interactivity
Less Noise More Meaningful Interaction
The Institute for Interactive Journalism
Jump to first page Democracies Online Building Civic Life on the New Frontier Presentation by Steven L. Clift Copyright 1997
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This presentation was modified. The original version can be found at and is made possible by the Corporation for National and Community.
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