"In the 21st century the big battle for us as citizen journalists is to really fight for community over consumerism. And they do exist together and the end result is that we have to have strong communities willing to stand up and be accountable to what we create and I think that comes through storytelling."
Jennifer Myronuk, in an Oct. 2005 video interview with new-media pioneer J.D. Lassica
Photo Linked From: http://www.democraticclub-scc.org/jennifer.jpg
Jennifer Myronuk is a documentary filmmaker and oral historian and local political activist based in the San Francisco Bay area and founder of Storyfield.com.
Conceived at the Oral History Association Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon in October 2004, StoryField is an on-going, collaborative project of historians and technologists aimed at creating tools for shared history.
FROM THE STORYFIELD WEBSITE:
"StoryField is a new desktop database solution for oral history and documentary process, content, resource and idea management. Developed in FileMaker Pro, StoryField works with Microsoft Office to provide seamless desktop integration & management of multiple users, multiple projects and multiple sources of data during the pre-production to production phases. Users can customize StoryField to create their own "digital toolkit" and resource library with the ability to track projects, add data and store related materials in various media formats??all cross-referenced with user defined keyword tags."
New media pioneer J.D. Lasica describes Storyfield founder Jennifer Myronuck's goal as "to make it easier to help oral historians chronicle the lives of people in their communities." He posted on his New Media Musings blog a link to a seven-minute video interview with her.
In the interview with Lasica, Myronuk says the idea for Storyfield emerged prior to the Oregon conference when she interviewed a retiring librarian in Santa Clara County about the stories of the counties citizens she had preserved over 40 years. This lead Myronuk to hundreds of other individuals in an interlocking web. She began to design a dBASE application to keep track of all the information.
"In the 21st century the big battle for us as citizen journalists is to really fight for community over consumerism," Myronuk tells Lasica. "And they do exist together and the end result is that we have to have strong communities willing to stand up and be accountable to what we create and I think that comes through storytelling . . . [i]f we don't capture primary source interviews now we're not going to have them for the future."
She describes the goal of Storyfield as to be a think-tank resource tool that grows with the storytelling field.
Myronuk sees documentation of community storytelling as a form of cultural anthropology. What I want to ask is: 'Why?'," she told Lasica. "Why when people meet at that moment of intersection, do new things happen because people decide they are going to step up to a challenge or opportunity. And looking at people's core operating systems -- not just the fact that someone lived -- I want to look at why they chose what they did and how does that impact community, how does that lead to innovation now, how does that lead to anything?"