Dennetmint

Goodbye, love.

18. The legal mark of adulthood, but it’s not some sort of immaculate transformation, and our generation has less milestones to look to than those before us. Growing up is one thing, but when do we become adults?

For years now, I’ve been keeping track of the lessons learned as I’ve come into my own adulthood. I’ve gone back and forth about sharing them, but it wasn’t till I received an email that my AmeriCorps program – committed to strengthening the public media infrastructure – was bidding adieu after a decade’s worth of service that I needed to share at least this one.

I’ve been visited by reincarnations of this particular lesson over several years, and it has been especially poignant in the last month. It started when, despite enormous effort from myself and many associated with the School of Interdisciplinary Studies over two years, our academic division was stripped of its collegiate status at Miami University. In the last month, the House strapped a rider to the budget resolution that would essentially eliminate AmeriCorps. And tonight, the Transmission Project is raising its last toast in Boston.

So here is one of the most heart wrenching lessons I’ve had to learn about adulthood, and one with which I have yet to come to grips: As we grow older, we outlive the things we love.

Goodbye, CTC VISTA Project. Goodbye, Digital Arts Service Corps. My class and the staff have inspired me to no end. I can’t thank you enough.

 

Photo by Morgan Sully

Filed under: Storytelling, Technology, , , , , , , , ,

Carnival of Journalism – First-generation youth and context

Recommendation 12: Engage young people in developing the digital information and communication capacities of local communities

This is probably one that’s closest to my heart, and the most organic entry point for me.

In the full description of the recommendation, the Knight Foundation sets the scene for a “Geek Corps” that assigns post-college volunteers to public institutions to help them leverage digital media technologies. There already exists something like this, a program of which I proudly call myself an alum: the Digital Arts Service Corps (formerly the CTC VISTA Project).

But when I first read the recommendation, my mind gravitated toward youth rather than young adults. More specifically, first-generation youth in minority communities. Most of my experience in media has been imagining how to leverage everyday tools for media creation by sources that are not traditionally seen as information providers. This has ranged from mobile media creation by immigrant communities and Millennials to my current position as the citizen journalism coordinator for The Rapidian, a hyperlocal news site for Grand Rapids, Mich.

When we look at the purpose of information, it’s to acquaint communities with the intricacies of issues and phenomena that have a direct effect on them. There are patches of media that serve youth, that serve immigrants but there is a whole swath that straddles the line between cultures, and youth has proven to be a volatile time across the board.

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Filed under: Ethnic groups, Ethnicity, Journalism, Storytelling, Technology, , , , , , ,

Carnival of Journalism – Universities: Modules v. local community engagement

This addendum branches off from my blog post addressing universities’ role as potential hubs of journalistic activities. To see what other carnies thought about universities as journalistic hubs and their role in media literacy, check out Dave Cohn’s roundup at the Carnival of Journalism


Most universities, especially bigger research ones, work on projects that are outward facing, and it seems like currently, they fall under two categories:

  1. Creating modules and components that various news outlets can utilize (All Our Ideas, Mobile Journalism Tools)
  2. Engaging the communities that are around them (MyMissourian, The Local – East Village)

A nod to fellow carny Christopher Wink: “Big universities have a long history of lacking support from the communities that surround them, despite being important jobs creators, covering surrounding neighborhoods can go a long way to sure up its connections with local leaders and residents.”

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Filed under: Internet, Journalism, Technology, , , , ,

Carnival of Journalism – Higher ed, purpose and imagination

<img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-980" title="Return of the Carnival of Journalism <Update: To see what other carnies thought about universities as journalistic hubs and their role in media literacy, check out Dave Cohn’s roundup at the Carnival of Journalism

In 2009, I went to my first national conference. I met up with the folks at Denver Open Media in Austin for SXSWi. At the time, I had been working remotely with DOM on their Knight News Challenge project, the Open Media Project, and had caught earfuls of bustle via conference calls, but I had never met the crew.

DOM is a highly controversial, sometimes lauded outfit in the world of public access television. I asked executive director Tony Shawcross why cable access, and in a moment that I often revisit, he said it’s simply the most effective medium at their disposal for what they want to accomplish. He’d as soon lop it off when it no longer serves that purpose.

Media as the vehicle – don’t get too attached.

We’ve all seen them: journos who wax poetic about how to dash your serial commas, how to STET your mistakes. In a shifting journalism landscape, universities’ responsibility is to imbue their students with a flexible mindset, and the rest will follow.

So what environments can universities leverage to exercise that mindset?

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Filed under: Internet, Journalism, Storytelling, Technology, , , , , ,

Vegan challenge… it has begun

Vegan Challenge! | Two friends, one month, zero animal products

I’m pretty sure I have one of the most talented web designer friends. Get ready: It took Matt Anderson about 2.5 days to whip this site together.

Matt and I started vegan challenge as a friendship project. Neither of us are vegans. We tossed around the idea of keeping a blog during the first challenge in June 2010 but didn’t pull one together till this bout.

You’ll see less random posts on Dennetmint this month, so pop on over to veganchallenge.org for our back-and-forths. We each learned a lot of different things from the last vegan challenge, and I hope you’ll join us on this January adventure!

Filed under: Grand Rapids, Internet, Uncategorized, , , , ,

Too much news content? A question to interest-based journalism

Somebody has to say it to those news orgs, and it might as well be me: Give it a rest already!

Here’s the thing: Every time I go to my Google Reader, I am overwhelmed with the amount of content coming in. I mean, really? 500 pieces of fresh content over one week from a tech pub?

And mind you, I divide my reader into niche coverage: tech, news, media dev, &c. As much as I applaud the amount of coverage these bureaus crank, I don’t really care whether some news org is just thinking about mobile, whether another is waiting for alternatives to the iPad. Are you so chained to the 24/7 news cycle that you’ve positioned reporters to catch the slop? That should thought leaders bend the crook of their elbow to return the cup to its saucer—an inquisitive look—suddenly it’s JUST IN: STEVE JOBS ENTERTAINED AN IDEA! PROBABLY ABOUT MOBILE!

My reader, slimmed down from over 2,500 articles in one week from 70 subscriptions. I will say GigaOm is one consistently good provider of content despite the amount they churn. And news flash: Did you know that Steve Ballmer went Twitter crazy in Kiev?

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Filed under: Internet, Journalism, , , , , , , , , , , ,

The ultimate guide for today’s man

Last week was pretty long, so I was looking forward to crashing when I got home. But after traipsing the few steps to our apartment hallway, a vise grip on my bike, the first thing that greeted me on the way up the stairs was a half-naked image of Jennifer Aniston, steam-rolled by text.

That couldn’t be our mail, could it? But I’m the only one with a magazine subscription in the household. So in my usual arabesque – bike to the right, back kick to the door and my free hand reaching out – I grabbed the mail and powered up to the second floor.

I hope it isn’t Wired, I thought as I turned the magazine over.

The other side of the outsert tells us that a half-naked Rihanna* rocks GQ's world.

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Filed under: Internet, Journalism, Storytelling, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Transparency is the new black”


I am:

  1. floored
  2. enamored

with this compilation by Geoff McGhee on data visualization in journalism. It’s seriously worth a Friday night in – popcorn, dimmed lights, the works. Watch it in the annotated version.

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Filed under: Internet, Journalism, Storytelling, , , , , , , , , , ,

Show me the $$

“When you are young, you have more time than money.”

Chris Anderson, The Web is dead, long live the Internet

Filed under: Internet, Uncategorized, , , , ,

Morning inspiration: Duet

I’m a little embarrassed to own up to my most recent Hulu find, The LXD, yet for some reason, I can’t help but share it with everyone. My explanation goes something like this:

It’s called The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers. The plot’s awful, but the dancing and cinematography are amazing. It’s about these dancers whose superpower is dancing. And there’s this babbling fool archetype who introduces each episode, a black man who stares into space like he’s blind. Sort of a forced Professor X character but for this legion whose battling a bad troupe—not bad dancers, mind you, but evil—except it’s not clear at all what’s at stake. But seriously. The dancing. There are no special effects.

So having now made my admission, what better way to start a morning lush with rain than with this clip? (If video doesn’t work, click here)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Bonus: Robot Love Story


Filed under: Internet, , , , , , , , , ,

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