From IVP Wiki

Building project ideas – functions, structures, processes


At RJI Pivot Point Chicago, working groups on Tuesday afternoon addressed three questions designed to help initiate the project-building process:

  • What functions should the news “industry” fullfill (for communities)?
  • What structures or elements might be useful to do so?
  • How might key processes operate?

Key words informing structures and processes

  • Customize, personalize, localize, monetize, replicable, low-friction, adaptable, open, device-independent, feedback, metrics, multi-source content, people-centered, interactive, self-sustaining.

Possible service functions for communities

  • Help individuals find and assess the trustworthiness of information they need to get through their daily lives.
  • Act as a trusted, forward-looking, equally solution oriented partner to communities navigating times of uncertainty
  • Help communities tell and amplify their stories.
  • Convene conversations around what is newsworthy.
  • Earn trust as a sensemaker, curator and convenor of community conversations.
  • Offer education and training in the tools of social media using digital news sources.
  • Tell complex stories, highlighting trends, context, patterns and possibilities

Useful structures for achieving functions

  • Community connection desk for sharing and experimentation

      -- Memberships in the desk / individuals free, organizations pay?

      -- Events hosting / conversations
    • Create communities around many other topics and let people find community among themselves.
    • Partnerships (big/small) with libraries, engaged citizens, public officials, facilitators and different sorts of news organizations
        -- Community needs assessments/agenda setting
      • Tools, storytelling and engagement school (“civics”?)
          -- Certifications, tuition, registration fees (orgs and individuals)
        • Learn, share, shop paradigm/format (credit: Richard Anderson, Village Soup)
            -- Transaction services for retailers

          An operating scenario: Actionable, personalized info system

          • How to achieve relevant, actionable information. Weather, school lunch, overseas, Afghanistan, information you want to know about; learn that based on your information preferences and prior information-gathering experience. Stocks. System that anticipates your information needs based on your expressed preferences and prior behavior. A metasystem for capturing all the work that other people already have, from Facebook to Google News to the Economist, reach out beyond English-speaking media in other languages.
          • Structures behind this scenario: To synthesize information from existing resources, not create a new resource. Characterized by interactivity and exchange with the community and having a content-feedback utility; it would access and leverage many communities and in that context it is a multiple-source content provider that is available on multiple devices that are portable.
          • Processes: Revenue possibilities might be sale of services, advertiser-supported, because it would be a highly individualized profile of the user. Another characteristic – low-cost production and distribution. Funding could then go into the journalism and content rather than the infrastructure. It would make heavy use of user-contributed content; journalists would be both writing stories at their own volution as well as marshalling community resources to do reporting and serve as hubs of conversation in the community, so it was as local as possible.

          Operating scenario: APM’s Public Insight Network (PIN): “Arthounds”

          Linda Fantin talks about Arthounds:

          At the heart of the Public Insight Network is how do you tap the intelligence in our broader community. ArtHounds – what his happening outside the metro area. What if we asked people in arts community that have passion about the arts and have them tell us what they are interested in and are going to see and how do we curate that and put three voices on the air every week? It evolved into a community in and of itself. There are 750 members of the arts community in PIN through this initiative who regularly contribute their ideas. They can have no personal stake. They have formed a community. The designed the ArtHounds logo and sold it at the state fair. Brought together for other things. Underwriters love it. They don’t sound like the average Minnesotan. Their passion comes through. They have a space for their community. Vermont Public Radio is creating arthounds in Vermont.

          These new 750 PIN members are now available to talk about other topic areas.

          Linda Fantin will distribute a case study around arthounds. We discussed Brad Degraf’s Sociative Twitter/social graph “curatorial community.” It turns over control to the public. Alan Mutter asks if APM could sell premium access to certain parts of Arthounds, or support those sections with context-sensitive advertising.