Posts tagged with 'media'
News organizations are increasingly turning to a model that was pioneered by independent media, a nonprofit model based on individual donors and foundation-funded projects. The two barriers to non-profit status have been based in IRS questions around politics and mission.
The Media Consortium, a national network of independent media outlets, represents the new landscape in journalism that a recent Pew Report attempts to describe. If the twentieth century was defined largely by corporate media, the twenty-first century media sector that our Consortium represents comprises outlets that are fiercely independent, committed to accuracy in reporting, and dedicated to making the world a better place.
What model of journalism do these independent outlets embrace? It is not the so-called objective journalism of the past. As a number of historians have pointed out, objectivity was itself an ideology rather than a practice. Instead of rising above the political fray, corporate media , responding to their shareholders, have not hesitated to push their market interests in the political arena, as we see so clearly in the cozy relationships News Corporation owners and employees built with prime minsters, police, and the British political establishment.
Independent media are not responsible to the market. Whether organized as for-profits with diverse revenue streams or as nonprofits, independent media are mission-driven. We serve our audiences. By reflecting our audiences’ concerns (which may be nonpartisan or partisan, left or right), independent media ensure that the public will have access to a diversity of views. That is why the health of an independent press is so critical for a democracy.
Independent media cover issues that are critical to people’s health, well-being, and political rights but that are not on the mainstream media’s radar. And, unlike the corporate media with its cud-chewed content, the independent media is unafraid to tell the full story even when doing so threatens the market or those in power.
We care most about getting at the real story. We are not predictable. We do not pretend to give both sides equal time. And our sector is growing because, increasingly, we provide the kind of media the American public wants.
by Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium blogger
President Barack Obama is in Louisiana today, and BP is saying it will know in 48 hours if its attempt to “top kill” the leaking oil well in the Gulf Coast by pouring mud and cement over it has worked.
If the scramble to stop the leak has ended, the slog to clean up is just beginning. Thousands of fisherman are still out of work, as ColorLines notes. But there are new jobs in Louisiana. This week Mother Jones’ Mac McClelland visited workers raking oil off a beach in Louisiana. One man, she writes, “can’t count how many times he’s raked this same spot in the 33 hours he’s worked it since Thursday, but one thing he’s sure of, he says, is that he’ll be standing right here tomorrow and the next day, too.” (more…)
The Media Consortium is pleased to release a mini-report in collaboration with the Center for Social Media. Investing in Impact: Media Summits Reveal Pressing Needs, Tools for Evaluating Public Interest Media was developed out a series of “Media Impact Summits” that took place in seven cities around the country throughout the first quarter of 2010.
Jessica Clark of CSM and Tracy Van Slyke of TMC drew together dozens of leading public interest media makers, funders and researchers from Chicago, New York, Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, DC, and Boston to address the question that many media makers are asking themselves: “How do you know your media matters?”
Insights from those summits are the basis for Investing in Impact, which outlines the major arguments for assessing impact, synthesizes the five top impact evaluation needs, and proposes five new tools for public interest media assessment. As a quick highlight, the five overarching needs expressed by summit attendees include:
- Getting on the same page: Developing shared categories of impact assessment
- Following the story: Tracking the movement of content and frames across platforms and over time
- Contextualizing the anecdotal : Refining methods for analyzing shifts in public awareness, deliberation and behavior
- Understanding our users: Creating more sophisticated profiles of audience demographics, habits and concerns
- Moving beyond market assumptions: Defining the uses and limitations of commercial metrics schemes for assessing public interest media
And the five proposed tools to help public interest media makers assess their impact include:
- Putting it all in one place: Building a unified social media dashboard
- Chasing the frame: Building a social issue buzz tracker
- Telling your story of impact: Developing model formats and processes for strategically communicating outcomes
- Asking the right questions: Creating common survey tools for evaluation and audience assessment
- Identifying networks: Creating a suite of tools that track the growth, health and effectiveness of networks
We encourage you to read and download the analysis (see below) and share it with your colleagues and peers. We also hope that you feel free to leave comments at one or or both of our web sites. If you would like to tweet about the report, please use the hashtag #mediaimpact.
We hope Investing in Impact begins to answer the questions of many public interest media makers, funders and allies on why and how to define and assess impact. CSM and TMC are both committed to continuing this conversation and working with partners to test out these theories and build out proposed tools.
Four strategic questions frame the new challenges and opportunities for media organizations (outlined in the diagram below).