Sessions at Mozilla Festival 2012 about journalism-mozfest

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Saturday 10th November 2012

  • (101) Visualizing the Viral Impact of Creative Commons Content

    by Ahmad Barclay, Joumana al Jabri, VisualizingPalestine and Daoud Clarke

    Participants will work together to design a tool capable of harnessing existing services such as search engines, social media APIs and data visualization libraries to create a visual picture of how items of Creative Commons content are being viewed, shared and republished over time.


    While established content providers seek to protect their content and prevent unauthorised republication, increasing numbers of people -- including our initiative, Visualizing Palestine -- now seek the opposite, using Creative Commons and other copyleft licenses to positively encourage the unrestricted sharing and reproduction of their work.

    However, this leaves us with the challenge of how to track and measure where our content is being shared and republished. While individual platforms, such as Facebook and YouTube offer statistics on the viewing and sharing of content at its original point of publication, there is no single tool suited to analyzing the wider sharing and republication of work across the web.

    What's the session format?

    • Short intro to the design challenge brief.
    • Brainstorm on the modes through which content is shared and republished, and what tools are available to track this.
    • Work in small groups to develop paper prototypes, code and visualization concepts.
    • Bringing together finished ideas and deciding on next steps.

    Who should come?

    • Anyone with creative ideas and/or experience in coding, data scraping or dynamic data visualization

    At 10:00am to 1:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 1. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (902) Data Expeditions: Scout the Data Landscape with our Data Sherpas

    by Lisa Evans, Lucy Chambers, Friedrich Lindenberg, Laura Newman, School of Data, Michael Bauer and OKFN

    In this session we will start expeditions into different datasets. The data we'll explore and cartograph will range from financial to environmental and geographical data - and possibly beyond! Participants will join an expedition and discover and map the landscape that they find. Throughout, there will be an emphasis on developing and improving data wrangling skills and techniques.

    After a short round of introductions of different expedition areas, we will form expedition teams, set out to explore the data at hand, create an expedition journal and map out the landscape we find. The expeditions will be supported by Open Knowledge Foundation sherpas, spirit guides and compass readers, who will pull explorers out of the ditch whenever stuck.

    Currently we are preparing to set out to three distinct expeditions:

    • An expedition to the hidden islands of off-shore tax evasion,
    • Drilling deep into the caverns of some of the extractive industries data and
    • Responding to a call for help from three African nations to solve the mysterious drop in life expectancy they experienced

    What is a ‘Data Expedition’?

    Data expeditions are a experimental concept we at the School of Data have decided to try. They are hands on workshops with guidance and direction – however the participants (adventurers) are not lectured, they learn data-wrangling skills by being confronted with real life data, problems and questions. Our sherpas will guide their pack to useful data sources, tools and resources to help climb the data mountian, but exact routes taken and questions answered will be determined by the participants. In a Data Expedition, the amount you learn depends only on your ambition, we’re aiming to teach you how to learn, not to spoonfeed you answers. Be aware that if you keep wandering off into the woods there might be dragons (just to bring you back on the road).

    Who can participate?

    We’re looking for Adventurers and Explorers with skillsets ranging from storytelling via heavy code-forging to graphic design. All skill levels are needed and the more diverse the party the better chance to survive and complete the expeditions. Teaming up with people having different skillsets and levels will be beneficial for participants.

    Will anyone die in the process?

    Hopefully not. Data is generally safer than real blizzards, but can be equally overwhelming.


    • Each team will create a "map of the data landscape".
    • The documents will then be published on the School of Data or OpenSpending to inspire further expeditions - there is plenty of uncharted territory in the vast data landscape.

    Who should come?

    • This learning lab is open to anyone - no specific data related skills are needed.

    At 10:00am to 1:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (903) Second Screen Prototyping

    by Mark Boas

    Second Screen Applications extend and enhance content information streams and synchronize alternative content on and via portable devices (the second screen).

    Join a complex and fascinating discussion and prototyping session among a diverse group of experts and interested parties, discussing and demonstrating second-screen concepts. We'll be generating a lot of creative content together - paper prototypes, sketches, blog posts and resources for exploring demos and other inspirational second-screen work.

    Session finale will involve identifying new technologies, possibilities and proposing solutions for creating new second-screen applications.


    • Jam with professionals from different news organizations and tech companies
    • Preview innovative demos like: Simon Klose's 'Linkontrol' for The Pirate Bay AFK documentary
    • Document our findings
    • Create an online, post-festival working group to maintain momentum, evolve our network, and follow up on our best concepts

    Who should come?

    • journalists, developers, experts and anyone interested in second screen technology

    At 10:00am to 2:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

    Coverage write-up

  • (906) Tips and tricks using digital journalism tools for newsgathering

    by SarahMarshall3

    Journalists and those interested in reporting will learn how to use digital journalism tools for newsgathering.

    We will take five news stories and use different tools to track down potential sources and verify facts. For example, we may want to find tweets originating in Benghazi the previous day, build a map of tweets sent with a particular hashtag from a given location, and we can then seek to verify images shared on social media.

    At 10:00am to 11:00am, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (906) HTML for Journalists

    by erika owens and DataMinerUK

    Markup and style a news article and test your media awareness by remixing web news articles to see how the style and structure of a piece can change the message: how does the medium change the message?

    We're working on building a "hactivity kit" for organizers to take to use Thimble to teach HTML and general concepts of the open web and hacking to journalists. In this session, we'll work together to hack the kit itself and complete projects described in the kit.

    At 11:30am to 12:30pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (602, Webmaker Bar) Bedroom Broadcasting: How to be a Sassy Talking Head

    by Amy Schmittauer

    Develop your charismatic Vlog Host personality and learn how to plan, present and edit intelligent, inspiring or just plain compelling content and commentary - and learn how Popcorn Maker can help you to pull it all together with style and verve!

    Session attendees will then be able to take their personal strategy forward and work on video blog projects at the Maker Bar throughout the Festival.


    • attendees can work on their 'Producer chops', while gaining a better understanding of programming content, maintaining voice and themes and how to add an individual flair to their projects that will earn audience approval.
    • attendees will also come away with a better understanding of why an open web is so important for free speech, freedom of information and to support DIYourselfers everywhere

    Who should come?

    • Media Makers, Journalists, storytellers, Vloggers, Podcasters, pros, amateurs and enthusiasts alike

    Session notes: http://etherpad.mozilla.org/talk...

    At 1:00pm to 2:30pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 6. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (902) Brownbag Lunch: Knight Fireside

    by dansinker, Knight Foundation, Michael Maness and OpenNews

    In this lunchtime conversation, learn how the Knight Foundation and Mozilla are transforming their work to match the speed of disruption and innovation in media.

    Michael Maness (VP/Journalism & Media Innovation, Knight Foundation) and Dan Sinker (Director, Knight-Mozilla OpenNews) will discuss the shifts in thinking on how media projects get conceived, funded, built, and managed.

    At 1:00pm to 2:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

    Coverage note

  • (801) Your interactive toolkit

    by Rich Harris, Gregor Aisch, Alex Graul and Alastair Dant

    This Learning Lab is a practical introduction to the tools and libraries used to build standards-based interactive content at guardian.co.uk and other newsrooms around the world.

    Starting with an idea participants will be walked though conceptual development, wire-framing & evaluating technical feasibility before an introduction to libraries we commonly use to assemble content such as leaflet.js, modestmaps.js, d3.js, raphael.js, underscore, kartograph and miso.

    Trainers: Alastair Dant, Alex Graul, Gregor Aisch, Rich Harris

    At 2:00pm to 3:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

    Coverage note

  • (902) OurBlock: A Community Radio Platform

    by Sourcefabric, adam j martin, Daniel James and Adam Thomas

    Help answer the question, “What does our block sound like?” and enable individuals to come together online to create and participate in the power and passion of neighborhood community radio.

    This digital community radio service will focus on developing a continuous listening experience for sharing local news, information and culture while building audience engagement through a collective social experience.

    Building on SourceFabric's Airtime open source radio automation software, APIs from SoundCloud and Twilio and open web technologies, MozFest hackers can help design and develop features to create a platform that delivers real time continuous listening, a shared participatory audience experience and social community development.

    This session will be split into three parts:

    Part 1) This.IsOurBlock: an introduction to community-driven radio efforts around the world and the goals for this project at MozFest

    Part 2) Idea and Feature Development: generate ideas and new features that focus on audio content workflows, audience participation and content creation and a highly social user-experience.

    Part 3) Team-Up and Hack: Build collaborative teams based on individual skill sets represented at the session and hack on new features and new designs for OurBlock and Airtime

    Who We are Looking For:
    (Zend PHP Framework, JavaScript, Web APIs)
    (Linux, Liquidsoap, Streaming Media Servers)
    UX and Designers
    Audio Content Producers
    'Radio' Programmers
    and You...

    Things to Do to Get Started:

    Join Our MozFest Session EtherPad
    Join the New Google Group
    Visit This.IsOurBlock.org

    Get the latest version of Airtime on Github
    Read the Wiki
    Check out the API Docs from Soundcloud and Twilio

    Let us know you're going to be at the session!
    Tweet us @thisIsOurBlock or use the hash tags #ourblock and #mozfest

    At 2:00pm to 5:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (903) Physical News

    by Jon Rogers and PaulEgglestone

    Digital tech has provided thousands of new ways to share journalism on hundreds of different screens. This workshop is for active citizens who want to build or experiment with physical platforms and digital tools for finding original stories and telling them in new and interesting ways.

    From Interactive Newsprint to Drone Journalism and everything in between we’ll be exploring the new frontiers of story creation and storytelling - where digital gets physical.

    Help us design a new user interface that enables community news reporters to create digital interactive content for paper we can connect to the internet. Work out a way of enabling Journalism Drones to collect data that’s not just video whilst they’re in flight. Find a way of using technology to validate and corroborate stories appearing on the web in the real world so we know they’re not just elaborate hoaxes. Or pitch up with your own thoughts about the best way to make digital journalism physical.

    At 2:00pm to 5:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (602, Webmaker Bar) Telling It Like It Is: Interactive Radio For The Web

    by Radio_Rookies, Courtney Stein, c and Nikos Roussos

    We want to show the world how to use Webmaker tools like Popcorn Maker to bring radio style content to life on the web. With Popcorn Maker, you can combine the intimate experience of audio journalism with a layer of interactivity using maps, images, web pages, and annotations to learn more about the stories you are listening to.

    Radio Rookies produces excellent audio programming.


    • A better understanding of audio storytelling for the web, and inspiration to make great stories that don't require video.

    Who should come?

    • youth, educators, storytellers, media makers, radio lovers, audiophiles

    Session notes: http://etherpad.mozilla.org/radi...

    At 2:30pm to 4:00pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 6. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (801) Make the robots do the hard work! Writing screen scrapers for news gathering with PANDA

    by Christopher Groskopf, Brian Boyer, Ryan Pitts and Joe Germuska

    Imagine that you're a bike enthusiast, or a reporter writing about cycling issues, and you'd like to know whenever a bike theft has been reported. You could call the police department every morning. But wouldn't you rather just get an email about the police report?

    In this session, people will learn the basics of writing screen scrapers -- little bits of software that help you turn web pages into data you can use. Then we'll send the data into PANDA project, which lets you set up saved searches for your data.

    That way, when new data arrives, the PANDA will email you!

    People will leave with the ability to apply these skills to any beat where you can get data -- campaign finance, corporate filings, product recalls, the sky is the limit.


    • We'll have example scrapers prepared for the group, and we'll talk about screen scrapers for a bit before walking people through writing their own.
    • Then we'll dive in to how you'd make your scraper work with PANDA. We'll have a special PANDA set up for use during the festival.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Saturday 10th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

Sunday 11th November 2012

  • (801) Jumping between Hacks and Hackers Communities

    by Mariano Blejman and Hacks Hackers Bs As

    We've been working hard last year and a half building the second biggest Hacks/Hackers community around the world with 1670 members, and about 15 meetups and hackathons.

    We've created the HHBA Media Party, biggest mediathon ever in Southamerica with 700 participants in three days.

    We've reached a level of "expertise" bringing these two worlds together that we'd love to share and discuss!

    The main questions we'll ask are:

    • How do we encourage open source communities to engage and contribute content ideas?
    • How do we encourage journalists to work with hackers?
    • What the heck does a journalist do in a hackathon, and why is that important?
    • Do journalists needs to learn to code? What for? How long does it take?

    We'll also share some protips on how to track ideas during the hackathon, how to keep datasets ready to go, and how to maintain the effort and energy of the community after the events.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

    Coverage note

  • (902) Election Hacking with OpenNews

    by dansinker

    Election season is the Super Bowl for news-application teams. Whether it's capturing live data streams on election night, creating innovative new approaches to mapping, building large-scale crowdsourcing infrastructure to fact check or data-dive, capturing real-time social sentiment, or simply creating new user experiences for presenting election results, developers inside the newsroom (and passionate indies) repeatedly pushed the envelope in the months leading up to the US Presidential elections.

    Just five days after election day, join seasoned newsroom developers, journalists, fact checkers and citizen reporters to compare notes, lessons learned, and develop new code and concepts arising from the just finished 2012 US elections.

    Come help document the amazing work done this election cycle, and start to design and hack new tools for covering, documenting, and reporting elections the world over.


    • Help design and hack new tools for election coverage: visualizations, data parsing, capturing social streams, and more.
    • See the current state of election coverage and learn what's possible moving forward--from some of the people that helped make it happen.
    • Help capture the 2012 election code strategies from news organizations--we'll be pushing these to OpenNews' Source project by the end of MozFest.

    Who should come?

    • Newsroom developers with code/lessons to share from the election
    • Civic-minded hackers/makers wanting to design & build election info-tools
    • People that want to engage with new ideas on how to cover elections on the open web.

    At 11:00am to 2:00pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (903) Creating visualizations using Linked Open Data

    by Alvaro Graves

    This session focuses on how to use multiple sources of Linked Open Data to create visualizations that later will be used in blogs, articles, etc.

    Using tools like SPARQL and Visualbox we will learn how to use Linked Open Data available on the Web to create visualizations.

    Since the tools used are Open Source, we are encouraging collaboration and feedback from the audience on how to improve them and make them easier for everyone to use.

    Who should come?

    • Some familiarity with HTML, SPARQL and programming languages is highly recommended but not necessary.

    At 11:00am to 2:00pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (801) Curating & Repackaging Citizen Video for the News

    by J. Nathan Matias

    This session is for:
    - Video bloggers & journalists
    - Translators
    - Designers & Techs
    - International bloggers & journalists

    An explosion in online video production has changed the nature of reporting and advocacy around the world. For civic actors, the problem has shifted from obtaining footage of important events to discovering and amplifying the important footage. Instead of shooting and editing video, newsrooms and bloggers now need to identify, verify, contextualize, translate and spread citizen video on the open web.

    In this session, we will discuss and design new workflows and technologies to repackage and share citizen video on the web.

    At 12:30pm to 2:00pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (212) F/LOSS workflows for grassroots publications

    by Libre Graphics mag

    Learn about the toolchain of Free/Libre Open Source Software tools available to produce a digital or printed publication. We will deal with software and systems that allow and facilitate collaborative design methodologies such as version control, IRC channels, wikis and mailing lists and see how these can be integrated in a publication and design workflow. In addition to highlighting specific tools, we will also discuss how editorial collaboration can be achieved at a distance.

    We'll briefly introduce the participants to the F/LOSS design software 'suite.' The Libre Graphics magazine will serve as a case study to present and share. By the end of the session, participants will collaboratively produce a small, zine-style publication using F/LOSS tools.

    At 2:30pm to 5:30pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 2. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (213) Crashing the Party with Popcorn: A Scheming Session for the ITU

    by Tim Hwang

    In early December, the International Telecommunication Union will meet in Dubai to consider treaty commitments that will turn over significant aspects of Internet regulation to nations, stripping away functions that have always been managed through open, community-based approaches. Members of civic society and the general public are largely barred from these meetings: at the ITU, nations alone will decide the fate of the web.

    We're taking action. We've brought together a super-group of advocates, policy experts and campaigners to scheme about how to raise awareness internationally about the lack of public participation and transparency in these meetings, and to defend the self-governance of the Internet. It's looking like a great group - confirmed organizations so far include the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology, Access Now and Free Press (with more on the way).

    In addition to this, Mozilla itself will be throwing its hat into the ring with an experimental micro-granting program that will accelerate these advocacy efforts, and work to broaden the grassroots community around these types of issues. We'll be discussing this, as well as planning the final few weeks as we march towards the meeting in December. Every willing hand helps, and we'd love to have you.


    • First, you'll get a crash course in the often hidden world of international politics around the Internet: what is the ITU? And, why is this upcoming meeting important?
    • Second, you'll learn about what advocacy organizations around the world are doing to raise awareness about these issues.
    • Finally, you'll hear about how you can get involved, and we'll talk about ideas that might drive awareness going into November.

    Who should come?

    • Concerned citizens of the Internet
    • Activists and advocates of the open web
    • Community organizers

    At 2:30pm to 5:30pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 2. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (801) A Little AI Goes a Long Way: Building Smart, Dynamic, and Scalable Journalism and Media Systems

    by Knight Lab

    From Watson, to driverless cars, to Siri, artificial intelligence is beginning to show what it can do. Now it’s journalism’s turn: The emergence of text processing and machine learning toolkits and services means that it’s easier than ever to build some editorial intelligence into online journalism and media applications – producing systems that are smart, dynamic, and scalable.

    In this fireside, the Knight Lab will discuss some of the tools that are out there, what they can do, and how they can be used. We'll jumpstart the discussion by describing and showing some applications using this approach as well as hearing from other people in the community.

    Discussion leaders:

    • Larry Birnbaum
    • Scott Bradley
    • Shawn O’Banion

    At 2:30pm to 3:30pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (902) Location-based Storytelling

    by Mark Boas, Jon Buckley and DataMinerUK

    Participants will work with custom Popcorn Maker templates to create a narrative about a place or location. This template advances the work by Laurian Gridinoc for the BBC.

    Participants will record an audio clip telling a story about a place - It could be as simple as their flight to London or walk to Ravensbourne - and develop a unique creation.

    At 2:30pm to 5:30pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (903) Visualizing Relationships - Journalistic problems in a digital age

    by malev and Mariano Blejman

    Investigative Researchers deal with vast amounts of documents in different formats looking for relationships.

    Together we will pursue solutions for dealing with issues such as: semantic analytics and processing documents, extracting entities (datamining), analyzing and "saving" facts in a database system, the historic problem of co-references between entities (for example, how to deal with names who refer to the same person)

    We will also look for optimal ways to visualize facts: timelines, maps, networks graphs, treemaps, and more.

    Who should come?

    • coders, journalists, dataminers, designers

    We suggest attendees bring problems and ideas they have gathered or experienced on the above listed topics and work on discovering new solutions at our session.

    At 2:30pm to 5:30pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 9. Floor, Ravensbourne

  • (801) Hacktivism and Data Journalism

    by La Nacion and Brom Ricardo German

    Data challenges and how hacktivism can help journalism change status quo:

    • Data and Access to Information context
    • Killing data skepticism by doing it yourself (if gov. doesn’t open data, do it yourself).
    • How we believe media must help promote a movement to open data and develop applications that will empower people´s participation and government accountability.
    • 4 examples of data challenges LA NACION solved in collaboration with hacktivism

    At 4:00pm to 5:00pm, Sunday 11th November

    In 8. Floor, Ravensbourne

    Coverage note note


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