I’m excited to share the news that Global Voices has won a Google Digital News Initiative award!
We are still negotiating the final terms, but briefly, this is a two-year project to work with Media Cloud, a custom search tool that helps researchers to answer challenging quantitative and qualitative questions about online media. Media Cloud aggregates hundreds of thousands of media sources and allows users to run queries to discover trends in online conversations and news – helping us to see patterns in the framing and agenda setting functions of the news.
Media Cloud is a joint project of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society and the MIT Media Lab, and is a long-running research project led by Ethan Zuckerman, who is also one of Global Voices’ co-founders. Ethan and his colleagues have been archiving and studying Global Voices stories for years as part of their work.
Our goal with this project is to figure out an editorial workflow and set of tools to sit atop Media Cloud, to help us incorporate its research capabilities into our writing on a regular basis. We make the claim that we focus on underrepresented and misrepresented stories, and when we have access to good data we can support that claim. Our challenge has been that we’ve needed to rely on the occasional contributions of our data scientist friends to make the argument. We hope this project will help us to add data to our anecdotal and observed claims about the shape of global media, and to more clearly see our own role and influence.
In the coming months, once the award is signed, we look forward to working closely with the GV community to build this project. If you're interested in hearing more, drop me a note or send a comment to this post to kick off a discussion. At present, we’ve started with a short brainstorming meeting with Sands Fish, a good friend of GV, who works with Ethan at the MIT Media Lab and will be working with us to design and build the Media Cloud tools and integration.