Exploring online collaboration for journalism innovators

Posted on December 21, 2010 by The Patterson Foundation

By Janet Coats

The Journalism Accelerator

The first part of 2010, from January through April, was focused on learning and developing ideas for further testing and development.

We worked through the summer and early fall to build an online collaboration tool, called the Journalism Accelerator, that would be the hub of a larger enterprise called the NewStory Network.

After testing that tool with potential users in September, we determined that our focus needed to shift. As we move into 2011, we are exploring a way to use the Journalism Accelerator within a targeted community, the Journalism That Matters group.

Block by Block Community News Summit

One of our early interviews during the research phase of the initiative was with Michele McLellan, a longtime consultant and trainer in the entrepreneurial journalism community. She wanted to bring together 150 promising publishers, creating an opportunity for the publishers to meet together for the first time to share and learn from each other.

The Patterson Foundation provided financial support for the summit, called Block by Block. But we also modeled our approach to collaboration: beyond money, we provided Initiative Manager Janet Coats' time and expertise to develop the program. Block by Block received rave reviews from participants, who have continued to work together to share ideas and experiences.

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