Co-op or collaborative ownership

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Curation, editing and an experiment in co-operative local journalism

EDITOR'S NOTE -- Media Giraffe alum Tom Stites has been hard at work on the Banyan Project since we first featured him in 2006.  He describes the effort to pursue co-operative local journalism in this short essay, prompted by a discussion about the difference between "curation" and "editing."  His contact information is at the bottom

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.

A new idea for newspaper ownership -- tap the reader co-op

Boston University journalism professor Chris Daly, an MGP2006 alum, has done some number crunching and is proposing that the nation's premier newspapers -- under seige from some investors -- essentially reform themselves as cooperatives -- with investment from member/readers. Daly's idea -- the newspaper as co-op -- is one form of ownership that has not been tried, but is increasingly posed as something worth trying. Read his post by clicking on the headline.

The power of the community press

Nonprofit community press is powerful, says Jordan Moss at Shelterforce Online, citing the successful changes that newspapers have made in communities like the Bronx and Fenway in Boston. Because community newspapers have the interests of the community in mind, they can cover issues that mainstream press won't, and they can cover them over and over until they're solved. Though they're hard to fund, community papers are an asset to both community residents and more mainstream media, pressing "the envelope of what bigger papers are willing to cover," says Jon Ball, who volunteers at the Fenway News. [ Visit Website ]
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