Community and Ethnic Media Journalism 360

CUNY is one of the 2017 winners of the Journalism 360 Challenge. See all the winners.

Project Description

Recently CUNY J-School’s Center for Community and Ethnic Media (CCEM) offered a training on 360° video for community and ethnic media journalists. A good number of journalists, young and old, from a wide variety of ethnic media publications in the New York area attended.

They watched some VR stories in cardboard headsets, talked about how 360° storytelling was different and created test 360° shots using a Theta S camera. They displayed tremendous enthusiasm and interest. At the end, each journalist pitched a specific idea about a 360° story they could publish in their community publications. There was a lot of energy in the room and later, the written feedback was very positive.

And that was the end of it.

The Community & Ethnic Media Journalism 360° Video pilot project is our scalable idea to work with these outlets to take the next step with immersive journalism:

  1. We want to attract media outlets to use 360 video by captured actual stories of specific events that happen in their communities, a “show, don’t tell” model. Working with CCEM, we’d choose a small group of publications and their journalists that were at the initial trainings and pair them with CUNY-J school students to create VR stories that will be published on the community website or Facebook page. The students get a clip, the organization shows this new form of storytelling and other organizations see how it looks and the engagement. It’s proof of concept.
  2. Buy several simple VR cameras and loan them at a low or no cost to journalists who have attended a training.
  3. Create a “how to” online guide based on these published stories so that other media organizations can replicate them in their community. For example, how to do a 360° video of a festival.

Read more: Can community news organizations produce 360 video stories for less than $500?