Posts Tagged 'innovation'

The Innovation Project

… in case you’d like the file in electronic form, here it is—the guidelines for our “midterm” project of crafting an innovation proposal for the Knight News Challenge (due Oct. 15!).

The schedule (including last week):

—Tuesday, Sept. 29: Reading due: WWGD?, pp. 1-69 (response on blog)

—Thursday, Oct. 1: Innovation Review due via e-mail by 8 a.m.

—Tuesday, Oct.  6: Innovation Presentations begin; continue Thursday 10/8

—Thursday, Oct. 8: Reading due: WWGD?, pp. 70-118 (response on blog)

—Tuesday, Oct. 13: Rough draft of News Challenge proposal for workshop

—Thursday, Oct. 15: Innovation Proposal due: After finalizing your submission, send me via e-mail (1) a copy of your proposal and (2) confirmation that the Knight Foundation received it by the deadline. You will receive zero credit on the proposal unless I have both of these items in hand. (This Thursday will be an in-class workshop.)

—Tuesday, Oct. 20: Reading due: WWGD?, pp. 119-144 (response on blog)

David Cohn on innovation for young journalists

Our 8 a.m. class is just a wee bit too early for me to ask a guest speaker on the West Coast to join us live via Skype. Nevertheless, young journalist/innovator extraordinaire David Cohn, founder of the crowdfunding venture Spot.Us that has become one of the most noteworthy winners of the Knight News Challenge, has been kind enough to help us out via this Viddler chat. He has recorded this response to five questions we’ve posed:

1. In your experience and from your perspective, what is innovation in journalism? What does it mean to be a news innovator?

2. How can young journalists develop their ability to be entrepreneurs in media? What kind of mind-set and skill set do they need? What kind of training? etc.

3. Looking at the Knight News Challenge specifically, can you tell us about your own experience in prepping your grant pitch? How did you develop your idea?

4. For students trying to come up with a cool idea for the News Challenge, what do you suggest for inspiration?

5. When you think of key principles for success for the News Challenge or another innovation venture, what comes to mind?

Thanks, David! (p.s. Some recent news about Spot.Us’ expansion to L.A. here.)

… Bonus material for News Challenge prep work — some marketing tips from David, as well as this clip:

WWGD? – the PowerPoint

For class tomorrow …

Reading: “What Would Google Do?” (part 1)

We’re preparing to jump into Innovation Week: Next Tuesday I’ll outline the details of the Knight News Challenge project, and we’ll take some time to toss around some initial ideas; then Thursday we’ll delve more fully into the principles and practices of news innovators (and, I hope, hear from one of them in class).

3125936268_715b3ac5d3To get you thinking like an innovator, an entrepreneur, like one who can recognize the new rules and opportunities of the digitized media field, let’s learn from one of the best: Google. Jeff Jarvis’ book “What Would Google Do?” attempts to reverse-engineer the company to unpack the elements of its success. As we read this book over the next couple of weeks (beginning with pages 1-69 for Tuesday), I want you to approach this with an eye toward your own project—the one you’re thinking of pitching to the News Challenge. How can this book help you? How might it change your thinking? Which of these principles (these “Google rules”) are important for your pitch?

I have one other piece I’d like to read. It comes from MediaShift, and describes the need for journalism students to have business and entrepreneurial skills—in addition to the core journalistic skills that are the foundation.

As usual, post your comments for discussion in our next class. Have a great weekend!

p.s. For outside observers: I should note that we’re not reading WWGD just because Jeff Jarvis gave this course a glowing endorsement last week. Seriously, we were planning this long ago. Honest!


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