California Studies Association

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California Media Collaborative Rethinks News Media Deployment


From David Simon, formerly of the Baltimore Sun, to Joe Rodriguez of the Mercury News, reporters, media executives, and observers suggest that we either need to bail out the newspapers, change corporate practices, or invent some a form of media or expand an existing one to distribute the news in a responsible and orderly way.

This post comes to us from Louis Freedberg, the founder and director of the California Media Collaborative, an inter-sectoral project to try and rethink the deployment of news media. They have a new project for investigative journalism on issues facing our state. Take a look at Freedberg’s announcement below.–ed.


Dear Friends:

I wanted to pass on some good news.

As many of you know, over the past year my colleagues and I at the California Media Collaborative have been developing a plan for a new reporting venture in California, in response to the multiple crises facing the news media

We have now joined forces with the Center for Investigative Reporting, the nation’s oldest investigative journalism organization, which is also making California a major focus of its work.  CIR is led by Robert Rosenthal, the former managing editor of the San Francisco Chronicle and executive editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Together we will be launching a new California-focused reporting venture at CIR, with major support from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and The James Irvine Foundation. We’ll be hiring a small group of reporters to do in-depth, watchdog and investigative journalism, focusing on issues such as education, immigration, criminal justice and the impact of the recession on  Californians.   Much of it will be data driven in order to show how state level issues affect people in their own communities, and we’ll be using Web-based technology in new and creative ways.

Many of these ideas were first discussed at the landmark Travers Program conference at UC Berkeley to which many of you made such valuable contributions about 18 months ago.

This project is at its core a collaborative one  – which will mean collaborating not only with other media outlets, but with non-profit organizations, academic and public policy institutions, foundations, civic leaders and others who care about how Californians will be informed and engaged on critical issues facing the state and the nation.

I also encourage you to take a look at the Collaborative’s blog site, as well as CIR’s website,  We are developing an entirely new Web site for our new California initiative.  In the meantime, the blog site is intended to be an online convenor of discussion and comment on the state of the news media in California — and to highlight new media innovations.   Please participate!

I look forward to being in touch with you as we move forward with this exciting opportunity


Louis Freedberg


2 thoughts on “California Media Collaborative Rethinks News Media Deployment

  1. Never heard of The Ink Well before, thanks for the article, I was a history major in college and am always doing research on classes I wish I took such as modern history. Thanks again!

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