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FCC vote opens up way for wireless


On November 4, the FCC voted 5-0 in favor of opening up unused television spectrum ("white spaces") for the Internet.  A statement issued by Free Press said this would make the Internet available to more people: "Over the past eight years, the United States has fallen behind many other world leaders in providing fast, affordable Internet access.  Nearly half of American homes are still not connected to broadband."   READ MORE

An Election Protection Wiki

In time for the election, this report from MGP/JTM alumni news about Giraffe prospect John Stauber:

John Stauber's Center for Media and Democracy said today it had launched a new wiki web site as a "non-partisan, non-profit collaboration of citizens, activists and researchers to build a one-stop-shop for reports of voter suppression and the systemic threats to election integrity."

AUDIO: Laid-off Kenosha, Wis., reporter seeks advice on starting non-profit online news community

 Denise Lockwood is like thousands of U.S. daily newspaper reporters -- she fell victim to staff reductions. But she's not giving up reporting -- she's pursuing her passion online.

Craig Newmark on Journalism, Media and Craigslist

The MGP has edited and added a new video to our archives. Here, Craig Newmark, founder of, talks about journalism, the economics of media, and Craigslist in August of 2005. Visit Newmark's giraffe profile for a link to a longer video, and also recent links that talk about Newmark's view of his role in the media, and the 2008 Ebay lawsuit.Newmark is interviewed by the Media Giraffe Project's Bill Densmore.

Journalists, educators adopt statement on need for 'news literacy' in schools

Journalists, educators, reformers and citizens gathere last week at Temple University and the National Constitution Center adopted a statement on the need for news literacy in America's schools.    (

Nine days left for the Knight News Challenge

The deadline for the Knight News Challenge is November 1.  It's been rewarding to see participants of the MGP/Journalism that Matters conference receive grants, including 2008 winners David Cohn and Brein McNamara.  Cohn was awarded $340,000 for, a project to micro fund investigative reporting.  McNamara was awarded $15,000 for signcasts, a blog for the deaf community.

A year as a Reynolds Fellow

Over the next year, MGP Director Bill Densmore will be living and working in Missouri, where he's serving in the first class of Reynolds Fellows at the University of Missouri.  He'll be writing to this site from there, a sort of dispatches from Missouri.

The Missouri School of Journalism is the oldest and largest in the country, and the new Reynolds Journalism Institute (with highlights of the new building pictured above) aims to put the J-school on the forefront of research on the future of journalism.  While there, each of the six fellows will be expected to carry out an innovative project to this end. You can watch a short video introducing Bill's project, the Information Valet, here

Internship opportunity for UMass undergraduates

Internship Opportunity Help profile "giraffe prospects" fostering participatory democracy and community; meeting Mon., Sept. 8, 2008, 7:30 p.m., Campus Center Lower Level (Room TBD)

Poynter seminar tackles question: "What is news literacy?

About 50 journalists, journalism educators and researchers gatherered with high-school students at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., in the start of a drive to get American newspapers interested in promoting "news literacy."

Media Giraffe Project events -- upcoming and archives

The Media Giraffe Project, alone and in collaboration with others, helps convene seminars, conferences, workshops and other events. Among purposes of these events:

  • Spotlight media innovation which fosters participatory democracy and community.
  • Support inquiry and action toward sustaining journalism
  • Study and advance news literacy among the public, students and citizen journalists.
  • JTM-MN: John Nichols on the survival of journalism: Be virtual, be real, be influential


    Johnnichols John Nichols rode his bicycle down to the weekly newspaper when he was age 11 in his hometown of Union Grove, Wis. (pop. 970) and presented himself to the editor as ready for duty as a journalist. "I never wanted to be anything but a newspaperman." But earlier this year, The Columbia University School of Journalism graduate presided as the No. 2 editor as The Capital Times of Madison, Wis., a paper he's served for decades, ceased daily print publication and went all-web plus twice weekly.

    In a 25-minute talk to the New Pampleteers/New Reporters convening in Minneapolis, Minn., on June 5, 2008, Nichols offers advice about the survival of journalism without print -- be virtual, but be real and be influential. 

    To listen, to an audio stream, click on the carat to the right of the bar below. Or download an MP3 audio podcast for offline listening.

    JTM-MN: Libel, law and insurance

    Jonathan Hart is counsel to the Online News Association and an expert on emerging aspects of Internet law, including libel. In a Skype teleconference, he meets with participants in New Pamphleteers/New Reporters on June 5, 2008, in Minneapolis. Among those joining the session are Jane Kirtley, attorney, professor and First Amendment scholar at the Univ. of Minnesota, and Robert Cox, of the Media Bloggers Association. Cox discusses his group's intention to sponsor the first libel policy for bloggers. To listen to a stream of the session, click on the carat on the left of the bar below. Or download an MP3 podcast for offline listening.'s founder Debra Galant and Liz George


    Gallantgeorgestreet_7 In late 2004, a former New York Times free-lance columnist, Deb

    Briggs' downloadable book is survival guide to multimedia journalism

    Journalism 2.0: How to Survive and Thrive -- A Digital Literacy Guide for the The Information Age, is a falling-off-a-log-easy-to-read guide to how to be a Web 2.0 reporter. And it's available as a free PDF download. (READ MORE) ---->

    9Neighbors founder Rick Burnes interviewed by MGP


    In December, 2007, 9Neighbors founder Rick Burnes was interviewed by Media Giraffe Project assistant editor Sara Majka. Listen to the audio by clicking on the carat on the left of the bar below, or dowload the MP3 audio (24 minutes; 11MB)