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Round Earth Media

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Round Earth Media has supported dozens of journalists who have written hundreds of pieces covering numerous topics in diverse countries. To explore all these stories, visit our archives!

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Could it happen here?

September 29, 2017

Here’s how it happened for the Cambodia Daily.

On Sunday, September 3rd, the leader of the opposition party was arrested in the middle of the night, charged with treason, and taken to a remote prison. The following edition of the paper carried the headline “Descent into outright dictatorship,” above the fold. At the bottom was an article titled “Cambodia Daily faces immediate closure amidst threats.” That was the last issue.  

(Click on the photo above for “The Devastating Shutdown of the Cambodia Daily” 

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What is happening?

September 15, 2017


In just the past month

Hurricane Harvey inundated Houston
Hurricane Irma slammed into Florida and the Southeastern US
Hurricane Maria pummeled the Caribbean still reeling from Irma
Two earthquakes devastated Mexico
Hurricane Jose still threatens parts of the US

The news is heartbreaking.  Before the advent of the internet and the 24/7 news cycle we didn’t have as much instantaneous news about disasters like these. While we might prefer not know, I don’t think that’s an option.

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We’re Off and Running!

Students just arrived in Morocco & South Africa

What a program! From our very first semester in Morocco (more than 5 years ago), with this story in the New York Times.  To last semester’s reporting for public radio stations nationwide (PRi’s The World).

 

And from South Africa, a great start to the second semester of our new journalism track on a program about political transformation in this fascinating,

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Done with Journalism?

September 8, 2017

Lately, I’m hearing — even from my news junkie friends — that they’re done with journalism.  Tired of reading bad news.  Tired of the shouting.  Tired of news stories that are thin and unsatisfying.  Just tired.

I share these feelings. And yet, I spend almost every day working to produce journalism.  Working with dedicated, ethical, sincere early-career and veteran journalists.

I still have hope for my profession.

The words of John Foley, Executive Director of the California Academy of Sciences,

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Most Trusted

August 11, 2017

Most Trusted

Turns out that the news outlets Americans trust mostaren’t American.  That’s according to a recent survey conducted by the University of Missouri’s Reynolds Journalism Institute.   Topping the list: The Economist(published in the U.K.) with public television in the U.S. in 2nd place — but the 3rd, 4th, and 7th spots respectively are British (Reuters, the BBC and The Guardian newspaper).  NPR is in 5th place.  Some questioned the reliability of the poll (namely BuzzFeed which ranked 2nd from the bottom),

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“Journalism has a class problem”

July 14, 2017

 

“Our journalism would be better if we were a better representation of the backgrounds and experiences our audiences have,” wrote journalist Heather Bryant, a 2017 Knight Fellow at Stanford and the wife of a garbage truck driver.

“That the spouse of a journalist had such a blue collar job [is surprising],” writes Heather. “The reaction makes me wonder how badly our industry really lacks for people with more diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.”

Why is this?  

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Consider the 1st Amendment

June 30, 2017

Consider the First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

As the 4th of July approaches, I plan to reflect on the importance and wisdom of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  And the way in which independent journalism champions this fundamental right.

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What do you think?

June 9, 2017

I recently attended a discussion entitled The First Amendment in the Time of Trump, sponsored by the American Bar Association.   One idea seemed to be on everyone’s mind: the fact that “increasingly, we Americans occupy alternate universes,” as CBS Sunday MorningSenior Contributor Ted Koppel puts it.  What caused this divide?”Rush Limbaugh had a lot to do with creating those two separate worlds. But he couldn’t have done it until 1987, when the Federal Communications Commission did away with the so-called Fairness Doctrine,”

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Telling Real from Fake

June 2, 2017

This week, I’m sharing an article in the Columbia Journalism Review with guidelines for telling real news from fake.  It’s an issue many of you have asked about.  Here’s a sampling — click on the photo above for the entire article.

  1. Willingness to retract, correct, and implicitly or explicitly apologize for misstatements in a timely manner.
  2. A reliance on professional ethics, includingaccuracy, and an interest in contrary evidence.
  3. Following the story regardless of its political implications.

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Trust

May 26, 2017


Hello everyone,I’m just back from “Elevate Engagement,” a conference sponsored by the non-profit Journalism That Matters and the Agora Journalism Center at the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication.  What’s one take-home from this conference?  A new understanding about the pervasive lack of trust in journalists.

There are many reasons for this. We journalists have missed essential stories and failed to cover our communities — domestic and global — fairly and adequately. We’ve failed to investigate. To challenge.  And importantly, to shine a light on the good in the world,

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