Convergence RI panel tonight - "When all the news doesn't fit into print"

Convergence RI panel tonight – “When all the news doesn’t fit into print”

Courtesy of Convergence RI:

PROVIDENCE – A community forum, “Speaking Up, Speaking Out, Being Heard in the Digital World: When all the news doesn’t fit into print,” will be held on Wednesday, April 23, beginning at 5:30 p.m. at 115 Empire St., hosted by AS220 and convened by ConvergenceRI.

The forum will feature Steve Klamkin from WPRO, Phil Eil from The Providence Phoenix, Erika Niedowski from AP [invited, not yet confirmed], Nancy Thomas from Tapestry Communications, Dr. Pablo Rodriguez from Latino Radio, Bill Ostendorf from Creative Circle, Jennifer Toone Corrigan from In Toone Communication, and Reza Corrine Clifton, digital storyteller. Richard Asinof, founder and editor of ConvergenceRI, will serve as moderator.

The format will begin with about 30 minutes of discussion by the panelists before opening it up for dialogue and conversation with the audience. The conversation/forum will be recorded and curated. The evening is free and the audience is encouraged to speak up and speak out.

The news and the flow of information – and who controls that flow – is rapidly shifting. The pending sale of The Providence Journal has magnified the conflicts in Rhode Island about speaking up, speaking out, being heard.

Whose voice is it, anyway?
The way we talk – or don’t talk – with each other has redefined our sense of community in the mobile, digital world we live in.

Or you for it, or against it? 
It’s easy to become victims of false, simplistic dichotomies – us vs. them, young vs. old, liveral vs. conservative, tweeps vs. non-tweeps – tensions and divisions that the news media often seek to exploit to sell their news/advertising products.

What does it mean to belong to a community?
It is a Facebook group? Or a Linked In network? Or a Tweet Deck? Is community a connection to share resources? Or a neighborhood of engaged people? An online network? Do face-to-face conversations – and interviews – still have as much currency as a tweet and a text?

Who’s the audience?
The struggle to be heard and to participate in decision-making is still very much about equity, justice, narrative and culture – who gets what, how and when.

What’s the message? Is it entertainment or news? Is it education, or self-promotion?
At the root are important economic, cultural and political challenges:
• What is an engaged community in a digital world?
• What happens when traditional news sources – and power elites – attempt to control the flow of information?
• How has access to date become an issue of equity, changing the way decisions are made?
• How important is it to chase the ephemeral rabbit – and never catch it – on the 24/7 breaking news treadmill?
• What happens when you are selling, not sharing?

How can you tell the difference between advertorial, native advertising and news content?

For more information, contact Richard Asinof at