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Gilda Parrella

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Why not use crowd sourcing to build consensus on world problems through journalism? I call it consensus-building journalism in my articles

My idea is to merge mediation and journalism using a five stage interactive model. Journalists would work with mediators to get compelling stories representing various points of view on the topic and brain-storming solutions to major national and international problems instead of focusing on the conflict and disagreements. If this sounds interesting, check out my article "Consensus-building Journalism: An Immodest Proposal" on Nieman Reports and "What Mediation Looks Like for Journalists". Is anyone interested in trying this?

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    Dec 1 2011: Gilda:

    Your article

    http://www.nieman.harvard.edu/reportsitem.aspx?id=102687

    makes a very poignant point - “Using a different kind of language that explores interests and goals, parties can eventually see that mutually satisfying outcomes are possible. “ But I really question the ability of the “main-stream media” to act as facilitator in that process. The death knell of MSM was their behavior in the run-up to the Iraq war. Dissenting voices were silenced. The controlling powers used the media for their purpose. Which illustrates the main shortcoming of the MSM. It is controlled by an elite. An elite supported by wealth.

    But fortunately, alternative mechanisms are developing which will serve the mediation role. The new media (medium?) - the Internet - bypasses centralized control. And in conjunction with a new phenomena, illustrated by the Occupy movement, in-person citizen groups are organizing with world-wide connections to oppose traditional power concentrations. If you want to witness the evolution of the next form of facilitation - visit an Occupy site.
    • Dec 1 2011: Thank you, Tim, for your thoughtful observations and for taking the time to seek out and read my articles. I am hoping that by using the internet as an accessible vehicle to gather stories and brainstorm solutions that the online forum would gain validity and 'force' politicians to design legislation that would address core issues and varied needs expressed from various points of view.

      I concentrate on media because I don't know of any other institution that has the potential for such good when it gets it right. We have seen the harm no doubt but in these days of major changes in journalism, I wanted to flesh out some possibilites for a new relationship with the public. That is why I developed "What Mediation Looks Like for Journalists" offering a viable alternative to just a news gathering and editorial function on major issues of our times.

      Do you know any journalist who might be open to this approach?