Recent news from the Center for Civic Media | MIT Center for Civic Media

Recent news from the Center for Civic Media

Participatory Youth Media Training Conducted in Gaza

Voices Beyond Walls conducted its first ever 3-day Training of Trainers (ToT) course on participatory digital media and storytelling with youth at the Canaan Institute of New Pedagogy in Gaza City from June 28-30, 2010. The ToT was led by Dr. Nitin Sawhney, with assistance from Asmaa Al Ghoul, an award-winning writer and journalist in Gaza, and Nasser El Sayyed, the lead coordinator for Les Enfants, Le Jeu et l’Education (EJE) in Gaza.

While we expected around 20-25 participants, we were surprised to see around 36 young men and woman coming to attend all 3 days of the course. They all had prior experience working on creative programs with youth in local community centers including Canaan, Tamer Institute, Sharek Youth Forum, Right to Play, and the EJE woman and children’s centers in Gaza refugee camps like Al Abraj, Jabaliya and Rafah. Many even had experience with photo, video and drama techniques and contributed to the critical dialogue in the sessions quite well.

Launching the Re-imagining Project in West Bank and Gaza in Summer 2010

Since 2006, I have been leading a participatory media program called Voices Beyond Walls in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, with a local and international team of artists, filmmakers and educators. This summer our teams are launching a program of parallel workshops in the West Bank and Gaza, as part of our new Re-imagining Project.

The “Re-imagining Project” is a program of digital video, photography and storytelling workshops that supports Palestinian children and youth in expressing their cultural identity, personal narratives, and creative visions through participatory digital media.

This project is a collaboration among Voices Beyond Walls, Les Enfants, Le Jeu et l’Education (EJE), UNRWA and participating community centers in Al Aroub and Jabaliya refugee camps.

The program consists of the following key activities in summer 2010:

I. Conducting two 3-day Training of Trainers (ToT) sessions in Ramallah and Gaza City between June 28 to June 30, 2010. It will be conducted with 20-30 Palestinian volunteers from local youth centers, to provide participatory youth media training and prepare them to serve as potential workshop facilitators.

The Image of the Journalist in Popular Culture: An Interview with Joe Saltzman (Part Three)

Science fiction media offers us a chance to envision the future of news. What images have surfaced there most frequently?

Journalists of the future apparently have the same problems as journalists in the past. In a TV Sci-Fi series called Dark Angel, created by Jim Cameron in 2000, a journalist, crippled by the enemy, broadcasts news and revolutionary information by hacking into government television. He is a traditional hero in the future. So are Max Headroom and the TV staff around him. They are working in a corrupt system trying to do the best job they can at informing the public. Almost every journalist in science fiction faces the same problems journalists have faced throughout history. The technology is different. The villains can even be aliens. But the problems are the same and the way the journalist faces the problems hasn't changed in 2,000 years. Often, these sci-fi journalists will risk their lives and may even get killed to make sure the public is informed.

Job opening at the Center: Outreach Coordinator

The Center for Future Civic Media is adding an Outreach Coordinator--an amazing chance to help place incredible civic media work directly into communities. Interested? Apply via the link below, or forward it along to qualified friends...


Title: Outreach Coordinator
Req Number: mit-00007036
Department: Media Laboratory
Location(s): Cambridge MA
FT/PT: Full Time
Employment / Payroll Category: SRS (Administrative)
Work Shift:

The Image of the Journalist in Popular Culture: An Interview with Joe Saltzman (Part Two)

What do you see as some of the recurring themes in the popular representation of journalism? How much do these myths change over time and how much do they remain constant?

The surprising thing is that the image of the journalist hasn't changed much throughout the centuries. In Antigone, Sophocles summed up the popular opinion more than 400 years before Christ was born: "None love the messenger who brings bad news." About the same time, another popular play told the story of a herald bringing shocking news to the mad hero who is believed to be involved in a murder plot. The hero picks up the herald and dashes his brains upon a stone. No doubt the audience cheered. And so, the image began.

One of the most vicious portrayals of the journalist, for example, is Five Star Final made in 1931. The final shot in the film is the newspaper in the gutter being splattered by mud or something worse.


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