JOIN US: “BEYOND BOOKS: News, literacy, democracy and America’s
Libraries” – April 6-7 at MIT
“BEYOND BOOKS: News, literacy, democracy and America’s Libraries” — a
Assessing engagement and common mission of journalists and librarians
April 6-7, 2011 / MIT Center for Future Civic Media, Cambridge, Mass.
DOWNLOAD POSTING NOTICE:
On Wednesday and Thursday, April 6 and 7, 2011, Journalism That
Matters, the Office of Information Technology Policy of the American
Library Association, the MIT Center for Future Civic Media, the Media
Giraffe Project at UMass Amherst the New England News Forum and the
Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute invite you to join in a work
session for civic information transparency that builds from and beyond
For three centuries, in American towns large and small, two
institutions have uniquely marked a commitment to participatory
democracy, learning and open inquiry – our libraries and our free
press. Today, as their tools change, their common missions of civic
engagement and information transparency converge. Economic and
technology changes suggest an opportunity for collaboration among
these two historic community information centers – one largely public,
one largely private. How?
The capability of newspapers to provide community information is
declining. At the same time, informal sources of local information are
Libraries and legacy media have always shared a common purpose –
helping us acquire the information we need to be engaged, informed
(and entertained) citizens. They used different tools – newspapers,
broadcast stations and books. Now the tools are converging – web
search, data taxonomies, database creation and analysis, social
networks – as librarians and journalists together foster civic literacy and engagement.
Librarians want to expand public access to accurate information,
including trustworthy local news. So do journalists. How do we expand
libraries as community information centers beyond books – perhaps even
beyond their four walls – facilitating and engaging with journalists?
What can libraries and journalists do – together – to foster improved
access to community information?
Thus, as the tools and mission converge, it’s time to ask: “What’s
possible at the intersection of libraries and journalism that serves
the information needs of communities and democracy?”
Via a pre-event social network, an evening agenda-setting dialogue, a
day of roundtable planning and closing action commitments, we’ll
discover what’s possible at the intersection of public spaces, open
documents, citizen reporting and journalistic purpose. Among the
questions we may ask:
* What does engagement mean to journalists and librarians?
* What might libraries do to facilitate community social news
* Must free speech be absolute within a taxpayer-supported
* How do we define the boundaries between engagement and
* Are libraries poised to become public-access media centers as
* Should a library operate a news collective, non-profit or
* How can libraries help preserve a free digital information
Among our growing list of collaborators are (alpha order): Joe
Bergantino (New England Center for Investigative Reporting), Jessica
Durkin (New America Foundation fellow), Mike Fancher (RJI / Seattle
Times-retired), Fabrice Florin (NewsTrust), Marsha Iverson (King County
libraries), Library Leadership & Management Assn. (LLAMA), Alan Inouye
(director, Office of Info Tech Policy, ALA), Nancy Kranich (Rutgers
Univ., chair ALA Center for Public Life), Lorrie LeJeune and Andrew
Whitacre (MIT C4FCM), Leigh Montgomery (Christian Science Monitor
librarian), Donna Nicely (Knight Commission/Nashville Public Library),
Patrick Phillips (Vineyard Voice), Josh Stearns (FreePress.net), Colin
Rhinesmith (Univ. of Illinois) and Bill Densmore, (New England News
Forum/Media Giraffe Project/Reynolds Journalism Institute).
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Bill Densmore at the the
New England News Forum, 413-458-8001.