Innovation and Fake News

Addressing the centuries-old problem of fake news requires innovative approaches. Technologists, journalists, educators, researchers and others have a role. Everything from “correction bots” to greater journalism transparency to a high school “news literacy” requirement was discussed in 2017 at a “news literacy working group” meeting co-hosted by Facebook and the Cronkite School. What follows is Cronkite School Innovation Chief Eric Newton’s initial report on the issue and some of the ideas from the session.  In 2018, ASU is working on the issues through a startup project called the News Co/Lab.

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The Cronkite School’s crowdfunding experiment: lessons learned

Journalism schools rarely use crowdfunding to raise money, but last year the Cronkite School decided to try.  The school met its goal of raising $25,000.  Together with support from Univision, the Dallas Morning News, and a matching donation, the money funded an innovative border poll involving more than 20 students from Cronkite News and the Cronkite School’s Public Insight Network.  Among the lessons learned: as a fundraising tool, email still matters. Thanks to a grant from the Institute for Nonprofit News, you can see a full report here.

Photo: the U.S.-Mexico border, by Courtney Pedroza.

Scouting out easy-to-fly drones, tiny 360° cameras and more

By Eric Newton

Heard of the Internet of Things? I just met a lot of those things in Las Vegas. Self-driving cars, smart homes and smart appliances, wearable fitness sensors — thousands of digital products glinted and gleamed at CES, the giant international consumer electronics show. Flashy prototypes grabbed headlines, but, as I’d hoped, the show also featured media innovations helpful to journalists and newsrooms trying to keep up in the digital age.

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Here’s a Fall Innovation Roundup

This is the latest in a series of blog posts by innovation chief Eric Newton.

New things are brewing at Cronkite News.

Students and faculty are making innovation and experimentation a regular part of the daily news operation.

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We Used Texting to Engage Arizona Delegates

At the Republican and Democratic national political conventions, Cronkite students with the Public Insight Network used text messaging to engage delegates from both parties.

They asked questions about whether the GOP was at a crossroads, what it would take to make Arizona a “blue state,” why they became delegates, and other questions.  The Cronkite News audience inspired many of the questions.  This unique approach allowed the audience to see the conventions through the delegates’ eyes.

Check out the full multimedia story about this PIN project here.

Seeing Innovation in a New, Better Way for Journalists, Educators

This is the first of three blog posts on innovation by Eric Newton, innovation chief of Cronkite News at Arizona State University.

In a popular television commercial, Jeffrey Tambor plays a corporate boss sitting in suit and tie at the end of the long conference table. He wants big ideas. But his staff got drunk the night before. They have nothing. At least they brought breakfast. “Bagels?” asks Tambor. “Peel and eat shrimp!” they reply, dumping a bucket of ice and prawns on the polished conference table.

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Innovation at Cronkite News: Long Live the Experiment!

This is the second of three blog posts on innovation by Eric Newton, innovation chief of Cronkite News at Arizona State University.

By experimenting with new approaches at Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, we identify innovations that improve both journalism and education. This is Dean Chris Callahan’s big idea: We hope to create the world’s first fully developed “teaching hospital” of journalism education, an immersive learning experience that develops new approaches while also teaching best practices.

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Innovation at the Cronkite School: Ask ‘Why Not?’

This is the third of three blog posts on innovation by Eric Newton, innovation chief of Cronkite News at Arizona State University.

Washington Post executive editor Marty Baron gave a terrific speech last graduation season about the transition from print to the digital age. Among the many quotable quotes: “The best journalism involves discovery. It involves surprise and wonder and excitement – and new knowledge.”

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