Journalism that Matters – Day 3

Nancy's grapic recording of a JTM open space sessionWe are into day 3 of Journalism that Matters, Re-imagining News and Community in the Pacific Northwest. (Hashtag on Twitter and Flickr #jtmpnw). I’m blogging from the opening circle – which feels both “in the moment” and perhaps disrespectful to be tapping away at my computer while others share their thinking of our conversations to date. The shift from wondering, divergent thinking, possibility (and probably some grief) is starting. More comments about action. I’m inherently interested in action.

Yesterday I did a small graphic recording of the session on “Disturbance, Disruption and the Artist” – I like this because I listen more than talk, and those of you who know me, I like to talk. There again was this strong sense of “wanting to stay connected” and I kept feeling like I needed to add a disturbance.

The disturbance I suggest is that we find the continuum of inward connecting to like minded people and share initiatives all the way to the outward facing, networked action which throws each of us connecting outward, not inward. Balancing the closeness and connection of community with the wider possibility of “infecting” others with journalism that matters by forging outward.

We need both.

The second thing that struck me in that session was the idea of a game to connect communities and news. The meme of play with it’s joy, challenge, cooperation and competition keeps coming up in every domain I touch upon. So now, today, I’m wondering what such a game would look like. What do you think? What sort of game would weave journalists and community members into a functional news ecosystem?

A few other comments from the artist session resonated with me.

  • The relationship between the artist/the artful person and the journalist being a key nexus. Love the idea. Love the term “artful person.” It feels like it opens more doors.
  • The “layer” of possibility. mmmm…. yummy and I’d like to think and visualize more upon this one.
  • Voice and identity – these always show up. Are we listening?

Finally, in the third session of the day I fell into a very pragmatic group on wikis. I was immediately at home and swept into the conversation. Clearly I have a bias for action. 🙂

6 thoughts on “Journalism that Matters – Day 3”

  1. Great post, Nancy.

    You wondered about “the idea of a game to connect communities and news.”

    Wow, makes me think — can we get Foursquare engaged with local news? Hmmmmm….

    – Amy Gahran

  2. Awesome GF love your work!! Looks like some really interesting topics you were covering!! I totally agree the balance between talking and facilitation throuhg graphics is hard to balance! If you want to be as ‘in’ the conversation as possible it is very hard when you want to draw it as well!

    Paul Telling
    Creative Communications Creator
    Graphic Facilitator

  3. Great post, and I love your language. You asked about a game that would connect the news and the community it serves. I would submit that there is such a game operating already, which facilitates and enhances the journalist/audience dynamic: fantasy football. Or fantasy baseball, or any number of other fantasy-whatevers–these are intricate microcosmic communities that rely on participants’ knowledge of key players and utilize real-world data. A friend of mine who plays fantasy football was telling me how the growth of this sort of thing had completely changed the way sports networks were reporting on games. Personally, I’ve noticed how much regular journalism (especially business and politics) has begun to resemble sports journalism. If this is the case, why not create fantasy congress teams? There’s plenty of appropriate data out there that could be molded into a functioning competitive fantasy scheme. With enough finagling, I imagine most widely-reported news phenomena could be rendered into this format. Then you might begin to see the growth of the news ecosystems you mentioned.

  4. Journalism is About Stories
    One of the relationships that matter is the interaction of the story and the person, regardless of their vocation, artist, journalist or other.

    The story is always independent of the people in the story and the storyteller. Indeed once relationships are ‘fixed’ by their documentation stories lose value.

    My commercial activities have enabled me to find two tools that help me understand relationships of stories and people–datacubes and content maps, and once I understood how to apply the tools I soon discovered the value stories create deliver for accelerated learning and wayfinding.

    Innovation, Stories and Accelerated Learning
    In order to change people must learn and stories are a critical facilitator of learning and properly delivered have the capacity to accelerate change significantly.

    Story Lens
    Tell a story twice and it becomes a process.
    Told a third time a story will manifest software.
    A story heard a fourth time creates value for a brand.
    Once a story is told a fifth time then accountants create measures.

    Journalists and Storytellers
    Journalists are an important part of our society and there are many exemplars of their capabilities, storytellers get less respect, usually for good reason. Is it possible to be both a journalist and storyteller? Maybe.

    A storyteller usually progresses from hearing a story to telling a story, works to change a story, learns to craft a story and then can enter or live a story.

    Talking and facilitation is about the storyteller, not the story and in my experience stories there are great opportunities to improve how we tell or journal stories.

    Nick Trendov

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