I started my career in journalism nearly thirty years ago. Aside from wanting to earn a living, my main goal was to help give a voice to those who didn’t have one. And back then, that included most of society. Those were the days before the internet; social networks were the groups of people you hung out with at a party or at the bar. Texts were what you read in a book, a magazine or a newspaper. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr and the like, were not only non-existent as platforms but the technology supporting them was not yet born. And newsrooms were occupied primarily by white, middle aged men. Granted I am white, but at the time (1984), I was a young, aspiring journalist with a penchant for telling stories about the injustices felt by many segments of the Canadian (and world) population.
Through a decade of producing television documentaries for CBC, followed by 18 years slugging away as a freelance TV director and writer, I have tried to create media that has some socially redeeming quality. I’d like to think that I succeeded in this lofty goal more than half the time; perhaps even two-thirds of the time, if I could be so bold. But, needless to say, it was the opportunity to make a difference, to make the world a better place, that kept me doing the journalism thing all these years.
I have always wanted to be a journalist, even as the world of mass media and communications has changed dramatically. My passion for the craft has only grown as the technologies for the gathering and dissemination of information have exploded exponentially in recent years. It’s why at the beginning of 2012, I jumped at the unique opportunity to be the Convener of Canada’s first Community News Commons, a new and exciting civic media project that promises to be an adventure for the citizens of Winnipeg and Manitoba.
I think we all have a passion to tell our own stories. It’s what we do as humans. Life is certainly a narrative experience and we impart pieces of that narrative to each other on a daily basis; nowadays it would be more like a moment-by-moment basis. I couldn’t think of a better way to continue pursuing my life long goal of helping give a voice to people wanting to tell their stories. Welcome to CNC. Let’s start the conversation!! You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community News Commons Convener