I think JTM needs to be here. I don’t think it s a luxury. It’s essential at this point.  Without those who are willing to look far forward, those of us caught in the quagmire of the day to day and don’t have the mission, ability, or time to do that kind of work, this may sound corny, but it provides hope for those of us to know a group like JTM exists.  It provides hope and opportunity to secure the future for journalism.

– Martin Reynolds, Editor, the Oakland Tribune

I think for the intention of this gathering, the format and the approach are absolutely spot on. This was not an information meeting (those have panels and the audience is supposed to sit there and soak up the “wisdom”.) It was not evangelical (those have preachers and the audience is supposed to be convinced.) It was a true brainstorming / problem solving session and the group’s creation of the agenda, leadership in the discussion and responsibility for capturing the ideas generated was exactly right.

Nora Paul, Director of the Institute for New Media Studies at the University of Minnesota in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

I often think that answers to questions we have are already inside us. These active techniques help pull out the information and ideas.

– Roger Gafke, Director of Program Development, Missouri School of Journalism

Rather than bemoan the lemons we’ve been handed, with falling circulation and rising corporate profit demands and so forth, this group seemed intent on figuring out how to make a better lemonade.

Duane S Stoltzfus, Chairman of the Communication Department,Goshen College

I’ve been in “community journalism” for 25 years, but the discussions around that subject helped me hone my focus and purpose, refresh my attitude, and rededicate myself to producing the highest standards of the form.

Scott Hall, KAXE Morning Show Host and Community Access Coordinator

The high point was when we worked as a group to develop a workable plan. It was powerful because we were all engaged; each of us brought an important aspect or expertise to the discussion…I learned how well the open-circle approach works among a group of highly motivated people with a common desire — to keep journalism alive.

– Jane Ellen Stevens, freelance multimedia journalist

What is Journalism that Matters? Here are some participants’ answers:

Journalism at its heart seeks to tell stories about people. At the center of any person’s actions and decisions and thinking is their soul. Good stories get at that soul, somehow, someway. The mission of this group is finding the soul of journalism and of America in the 21st century.

Sue Ellen Christian, Asst. Prof. of Journalism, School of Communication, Western Michigan University

I just spent three days in St. Louis with a small group of folks who want to change journalism from the inside to make it more responsive to democratic values and to readers/listeners/users. We spent a day chronicling what’s wrong, a day brainstorming how to fix it, and a half day making assignments to actually do so. It was a combination bitch session, rap session and solution session.

Bill Densmore, Director/editor of the Media Giraffe Project at the Univ. of Massachusetts-Amherst


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