Studio 20’s first class of students are in their third semester, and working on innovation projects with a variety of media partners. They work independently and present their progress in Jay Rosen’s Studio 3 course. Here’s what they’re up to this term:
Anjali Khosla Mullany is establishing a noise beat for the New York Times Local East Village. Her project involves data visualization, video reporting, and designing a dynamic new beat page system for reporters and the community.
Jami Katz is creating a cultural calendar for UrbanDaddy.com that is being used as an internal tool between editors to streamline editorial work flow. She has been coordinating events and creative story ideas for UrbanDaddy’s New York, Los Angeles and National editions. She has also been developing new ideas for the company’s Twitter site and making recommendations.
James Matthews is integrating SeeClickFix, an organization that allows citizens to report non-emergency local concerns, on The Local East Village website and developing best practices to use the information for in depth hyperlocal reporting.
Amir Shoucri developed a video component for the New York Observer’s website. This included creating a signature “Observer” visual style, devising a workflow for posting video, and producing a variety of original video content. Here’s an example of a feature posted on the home page.
Studio 20 Director Jay Rosen recently gave an Inaugural Lecture to the incoming class at Sciences Po école du journalisme in Paris (read reports of it in English and in French, with videos of the talk) that was meant not only for French students, but for anyone interested in journalism.
Rosen elaborated on his talk in a post he published titled The Journalists Formerly Known as the Media: My Advice to the Next Generation, in which he takes a thoughtful, retrospective look at the evolution of the public, the audience and the media:
In 1764, for example, the King of France ruled it illegal to print or sell or peddle on the street anything about the reform of state finances—past, present or future. It’s not only that there was no freedom of the press. That was true, but more than that: The king’s mystery was not considered the people’s business. The whole idea that the affairs of the nation belonged to the people of that nation had yet to be accepted. Without an idea like that (today we would call it “the public’s right to know…”) the very practice of journalism is impossible—in fact, unthinkable.
It took a while before those outside of the government began gaining access to information and developed ways to communicate what went on behind closed doors, and when they did, they began changing the culture of news around diplomacy:
Let’s jump ahead to Paris in 1919 and the Peace Conference that ended World War I. Something new was seen at Paris. At previous international conferences intended to conclude wars and settle borders, the diplomats would negotiate in secret and emerge weeks later with a result which was then conveyed to the home countries as a more or less finished product. In Paris a new pattern was seen. The American delegation was accompanied by over 150 newspaper correspondents. They shocked the diplomats by demanding entrance to the opening session.
Rosen alludes to his famous post on The People Formerly Known as the Audience and builds upon it, calling out to the journalists formerly known as the media:
Seeing people as masses is the art in which the mass media, and professional media people, specialized during their profitable 150-year run (1850 to 2000). But now we can see that this was actually an interval, a phase, during which the tools for reaching the public were placed in increasingly concentrated hands. Professional journalism, which dates from the 1920s, has lived its entire life during this phase, but let me say it again: this is what your generation has a chance to break free from. The journalists formerly known as the media can make the break by learning to specialize in a different art: seeing people as a public, empowered to make media themselves.
In conclusion, Rosen offers 10 pieces of advice to the next generation of journalists. Read the full post for an explanation of each point.
1. Replace readers, viewers, listeners and consumers with the term “users.”
2. Remember: the users know more than you do.
3: There’s been a power shift; the mutualization of journalism is here.
4: Describe the world in a way that helps people participate in it.
5: Anyone can doesn’t mean everyone will.
6: The journalist is just a heightened case of an informed citizen, not a special class.
7: Your authority starts with, “I’m there, you’re not, let me tell you about it.”
8: Somehow, you need to listen to demand and give people what they have no way to demand.
9: In your bid to be trusted, don’t take the View From Nowhere; instead, tell people where you’re coming from.10: Breathe deeply of what DeTocqueville said: “Newspapers make associations and associations make newspapers.”