Projects

The Washington News Council Community

We all know how vital it is to have accountable news media that publish trustworthy, accurate, information…so how do we get there? The Washington News Council has built an inclusive social network, integrated with this web site, to address this question and the many other important conversations surrounding the news media in Washington. Our goal is to build stronger relationships between those who publish the news, those who follow the news, and those who make the news. Got a problem with something you’ve been reading? Post it in a forum. Are you the subject of a news story that got it wrong? Tell us your side of the story! What do you think of the coverage on a certain topic? Maybe you have a new idea for a startup that can fill in the missing gaps. This is a place for everybody to network, including journalists, publishers, politicians, citizens, activists, business leaders, and civic engineers.

Registration is simple and free, please join us!

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The TAO of Journalism

Transparency. Accountability. Openness.

As we venture into uncharted grounds of new media and information overload, it is increasingly more difficult to find trustworthy news sources that promise to be open about their reporting. We believe that the three guiding principles behind the TAO of journalism are critical to building trust and confidence in our news media. That’s why we developed the TAO seal, which can be used by publishers, bloggers, reporters, or any media makers who are willing to take the pledge and uphold the TAO principles. Audiences will benefit from knowing that their news providers are willing to be transparent about themselves, accountable for mistakes, and open to other viewpoints, and news providers will benefit from having a more loyal and trusting readership.

Please visit our site to take the pledge and join others who have done so as this movement continues to gain traction.

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The Washington News Lab

Exciting experiments in news are taking place all over the country. New funding models such as Spot.Us have now come to Seattle, and new technologies such as the Document Cloud are allowing information to be more organized and relevant. We want Washington State to become part of the action, and are incubating new tools to deliver important information to the public. Right now we are building a comprehensive map and directory of all the news sources in the entire Evergreen State. Are you in it? We also have a Netvibes page that seeks to aggregate all the important RSS feeds in Washington.

Stay tuned as we put together visualizations and other engaging info treats.

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Outreach and Education

The Washington News Council has always played an important role in educating youth about media ethics. Since our founding in 1998, we have hosted 30 student mock hearings in colleges and high schools across the state where students consider real complaint cases and play the role of the News Council, voting on the accuracy and fairness of news stories. We have also awarded 22 scholarships to students planning to study communications or related fields at Washington state public or private colleges and universities. We have hired student interns nearly every quarter, including summers, for 12 years. We also share office space and work closely with the Washington Journalism Education Association, which works to ensure that our high school newspapers and student journalists statewide are the best they can be.

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Our Annual Gridiron Dinner and Roast

In order to keep the News Council operating, we hold our annual fundraiser that brings together political, business, media, and civic leaders all in one room for a fun-filled evening of roasting, toasting, videos, song, and dance. You can have a look at last year’s event here. This year’s dinner took place on November 12th, 2010. We “toasted” five former mayors of Seattle: Wes Uhlman, Charles Royer, Norm Rice, Paul Schell, and Greg Nickels.

Thanks to all who participated this year and made the evening a great success!

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