May 04, 2005

COMJIG programming at AEJMC-San Antonio

Wed., Aug. 10
10-11:30 a.m.
Care and Feeding of Community Journalism Centers
Currently in American higher education there are a handful of state and/or national centers devoted to community journalism. How did they get started? What's their vision? What do they do? Where does the funding come from? What's their future? Roadblocks, speedbumps and potholes? Could your college/university model after these groundbreakers? I'll be moderating panel that will bring together the movers and shakers from four to five community journalism centers and initiatives, including UNC, Texas Christian University, Kentucky, SUNY-Oswego, KSU and API. This seems like a natural lead-off session because it will allow us to frame the discussions to follow. These initiatives really were what got things going across the country. I'm sure they're more projects out there, and/but we just don't know who they are or where they're doing it. So maybe this will flush 'em out!

Mini-plenary session on the Growth of the Latino Press
As you know, the growth of the Latino press has been huge here recently, and we as educators should be telling our kids about it. It's community journalism (a community of ethnicity) with an unapologetic advocacy point of view. This joint-session session on the remarkable emergence of the Spanish-language press brings together four sponsors; Civic Interest Group and Newspaper Division are taking the lead, so we don't have to do a thing for this one.

Thursday, Aug. 11
11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m.
Research Paper Session
Our very first sole-sponsored refereed research paper session. Up to four refereed papers. Bill Reader to moderate and lead discussion after.

1:30-3 p.m.
Scholar-to-Scholar Research Session
Our second research paper session, but more informal programming. FYI: "like a poster session on steroids" is how Carol Pardun describes the format. It's a room full of paper presenters and their posters (mounted on 4x8 boards). Folks "stroll and troll," checking out scholars whose layouts and topics interest them. It's very chatty and informal, but loads of fun. Up to seven refereed papers. Again, this is Bill's baby.

8:30-10 p.m.
A Community Journalism Teaching Roundtable
(Note: this is our official "members' meeting" but since we elected officers for two years, we can use this time for something special.)
When community journalism educators get together, the thing they talk about the most is how to define and teach the subject. In this groundbreaking convention for the Community Journalism Interest Group, we'll gather during our members' meeting for a best practices brainstorming session involving everyone in the room who wants to contribute. It will also serve as a way to find out "who's who in the zoo." In short, who teaches what, where and how. A great way to meet and greet, get people talking, and excited about what we're all doing.

10:30 p.m.
Exec committee meeting
Following the teaching roundtable, the officers will adjourn to the jazz bar downstairs. Jim Cullens' jazz on the Riverwalk is the venue--by direct degree of the COMJIG grand poobah, a self-appointed jazz maven.

Friday, Aug. 12
11:45 a.m. -1:15 p.m.
Community Photojournalism: Revictimizing the Victims When They're Your Neighbors.
This is a joint-sponsored luncheon panel with the Visual Communication Division. $35 a pop to the first 20 folks who sign up. We'll be bringing in a panel of Texas community newspaper editors, publishers and shooters who know that it's a whole different ballgame when you live among the people you cover. What guides the community photojournalist when he or she is visually covering wrecks, fires, crime and violence? And then back in the newsroom, how do you decide what to run? Hold on to your taco salad, kids, this going to be a lively one (and as moderator, I get to ride herd).

3:15-4:45 P.M.
APME Credibility Roundtable
Putting students in charge: A new project to bring citizens and journalists together in the community, with APME'S National Credibility Roundtables Project. Co-sponsored teaching panel with Civic Journalism Interest Group. In a commitment to learning about and addressing credibility issues in news media, APME has initiated the National Credibility Roundtables Project. The project has engaged dozens of media outlets and their audiences across the nation to talk about key issues of trust, awareness, accuracy, fairness, and overall credibility. This year, APME has partnered with several universities across the nation to include students in the organization, planning, and implementation of the roundtables. Through the experience, students learn first-hand from participants about media credibility, will look at several of those pilot experiences with universities and the issue of teaching credibility. Our vice-head, Peggy Kuhr from the University of Kansas is the moderator. Panelists include: Carol Nunnelley, National Director, National Credibility
Roundtables Project, for APME and the Ford Foundation; Andrea Frantz, Wilkes University; Steve Reese, University of Texas; Chris Roush, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

5-6:30 P.M.
Professional Freedom and Responsibility Award Session
We're joining the Critical Cultural Studies Division to honor outstanding Texas community journalist Ronnie Duggers of the Texas Observer for a distinguished career at his urban alternative weekly (one of the other real growth areas in the print media).

Saturday, Aug. 13
10-11:30 a.m.
The Mic on Main Street: Community Radio
Remember Chris--that cool radio dude on "Northern Exposure" -- how he'd look out the window on main street and just talk about what he saw? Is that fictional character based on fact? All local talk-news radio stations are still out there-particularly small AM stations in the Midwest and West--sometimes in towns not served by any other media outlet. Isn't that an important part of the media mix? What's out there and what are the trends? Is Clear Channel gobbling up everything in the radio landscape? Is there still a place for the small, independent all-local station? When you hear a radio announcer say, "This is a community radio station," What does that mean?
COMJIG is co-sponsoring with the Radio, Television Journalism Division.
RTVJ's Denise Dowling of the University of Montana is pulling this session together, and she'll moderate too.

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