Add to My MSN

Media Conference: Thousand Kites Project

6/8/2008 2:52:25 PM

Tags: media, independent press, media reform, National Conference for Media Reform, criminal justice system, radio, Thousand Kites, Appalshop, Amelia Kirby, Janine Jackson, Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting

One of the best (and most overwhelming) parts of a conference like this weekend’s Free Press event is the confluence of energized people, all armed with sharp ideas, many working on innovative, exciting projects. On Saturday afternoon, one project making innovative use of radio stood out from the fray:

Thousand Kites, a project of the Appalachia-based arts and education center Appalshop, is “a national dialogue project addressing the criminal justice system” that uses video, theater, radio, and the Internet to help people to share their experiences and motivate reform. Amelia Kirby, the project’s media producer, played several minutes of a radio call-in show for conference attendees during a session on “Connecting with Social Justice Organizations.” Over crackling phone lines, family and friends sent holiday wishes to incarcerated loved ones from whom they were separated.

Before one airing of the show, Kirby explained, they had a caller who was outraged at the premise, offended that they’d be doing such a thing for incarcerated people. After the show aired, Kirby said, the man called again. He had listened to the program. He had changed his mind—he’d never “thought of things this way.”

It reminded me of what Janine Jackson, from Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, had said the day before, when someone asked her how media critics might also be activists. Her answer resonated beyond media criticism: To make change, she explained, you don’t have to necessarily change the institution. You just have to change how one person thinks about the institution.

For more on the National Conference for Media Reform, click here.



Related Content

A Penny for Your Music

Radiohead, as you probably know, is a Very Influential Band. Now that it’s sold its In Rainbows albu...

Go Fly a (Recycled) Kite

Our sister publication Mother Earth News has an online rundown of a fun little springtime DIY projec...

Karma Police Meet the Jazz Police

We’ll wait to see whether it joins “cool jazz” and “post-bop” in the jazz lexicon, but jazz has ente...

Keeping Happy Even When Work Stinks

The secret is not hiring a fun consultant, nor does it involve gleetivities….

Content Tools




Post a comment below.

 






Pay Now & Save $5!
First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Want to gain a fresh perspective? Read stories that matter? Feel optimistic about the future? It's all here! Utne Reader offers provocative writing from diverse perspectives, insightful analysis of art and media, down-to-earth news and in-depth coverage of eye-opening issues that affect your life.

Save Even More Money By Paying NOW!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $5 and get 4 issues of Utne Reader for only $31.00 (USA only).

Or Bill Me Later and pay just $36 for 4 issues of Utne Reader!