Helping People Help Their Narratives
Andrew McGregor talks about The Tiziano Project, a nonprofit that provides occupants of conflict, post-conflict and underreported regions with the resources and training to tell the stories that shape their world.
By Maria Popova
"Citizen journalism" has been one of 2010's most frivolous buzz phrases, tossed around like a democratic panacea for the injustices and imbalances of news. A leap of logic consistently accompanies the concept: the assumption that mere access to new-media tools and platforms is necessary and sufficient for this breed of decentralized, mass-driven reporting. Necessary, certainly. Sufficient, hardly. What makes the difference between mere information gathering and true journalistic practice, with its compelling storytelling and investigative rigor, is the mastering of those tools.
This is precisely what the The Tiziano Project addresses. Founded in 2007, the nonprofit provides occupants of conflict, post-conflict and underreported regions with the equipment, resources and – perhaps most important – training to tell the stories that shape their world and, in the process, better their lives. It is as much about community empowerment on the local level as it is about harnessing collaborative journalism on a global scale, using the capacity of photojournalism, multimedia storytelling and information technology to foster a new kind of communication education.
In this interview, founder Andrew McGregor talks about the project’s goals, the democratization of the newsroom, Tiziano's recent effort in Kurdistan and the importance of sensitivity to cultural differences in the process of implementing new-media platforms.
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