Kick-off meeting in Sevilla

The partners of the EMAC project met in Sevilla, Spain, in December of 2017 to kick off the project and talk about the road map.

MEETING CONTENT

We went over the glossary and terminology work that had been done nationally before the meeting already. AMARC will go through the ideas put up in these documents in the coming weeks and test them on their transnational transferability.

The partners also received input and agreed on an evaluation plan for the meetings as well as the project and its products. COMMIT (the austrian media training organisation) will be responsible for the evaluation throughout the project.

MEASURING IMPACT

The partners also discussed the indicators and objectives to measure the impact of the project on the following levels:

ORGANISATIONAL

The objectives on the organisational level are to:
  • help journalists use terms reflective of minorities in their reporting and in that raising awareness for these people and the realities they are living in
  • introduce new and improved elements to trainings delivered at the target organisations
  • talk to people from minorities about minority issues and give a voice to minority journalists in media
  • give minority journalists more access to the deliberations about the media agenda
  • enhance the quality of reporting and of trainings

SYSTEMIC

The objectives on the organisational level are to:
  • create awareness among media content producers about demands in terminology when reporting on minorities
  • change the way that media content producers are reporting on minorities

PERSONAL

The objectives on the organisational level are to:
  • increase awareness on how we use words ourselves and keep up with recent developments and how they impact terminology
  • increase awareness for cultural and societal differences in learners, trainers and staff
  • increase awareness for the change terminology is undergoing and keep open mind to keep learning: When in improve the way trainers can
  • impact people they are communicating with not only in a training situation, but in day-to-day work life

 

Measuring project impact

If we want or need to measure impact in terms of EU projects or other activities co-financed by the European Union, we always need to ask ourselves:

Why we are doing all of this? What changes are we trying to achieve?

The definition of an IMPACT always has got to include a clear description of a corresponding or underlying need. We need to look at this on (1) a personal level (with a focus on staff, trainers and trainees), on (2) a systemic level (the impact on the world around us) and (3) an organizational level (i.e. achieving enhacement of processes at target organisations).
We need to agree on a measure. We could, for example, apply an impact value scaled from 1 to 5 (low to high) expressing the level of impact on the different levels.

What are the central questions in relation to our project?

  • What are the actual day-to-day changes, that organisations would like to make, what kind of input and materials do they need to achieve it?
  • What are the actual changes in the way people involved in the project and/or trainings think about and communicate with people from minorities?

Let’s start the journey

We are creating a course for ethical journalism for journalists and teachers alike. This is EMAC. The journey starts here.

The proliferation of mass media and new technologies has brought about decisive changes in human communication processes and behaviour. This fact has been recognised by global and European institutions, from UNESCO to the European Parliament and Commission. These changes in the role that media plays in the life of citizens has highlighted the importance of Media Literacy, which aims to empower citizens by providing them with the competencies (knowledge and skills and attitude) necessary to engage with traditional media and new technologies, e.g. the European Parliament resolution.

The change in the media landscape has also impacted the role and social, professional and ethical responsibilities of journalists. To help faciliate media development in view of these changes we are compiling a training course, a handbook and terminology sheets.
The objective behind these materials is to provide citizens, journalists and media activists with valuable competences to face editorial challenges like fake news/alternative facts, infomercials vs. information, freedom of speech and hate speec and help them to develop diversity and pluralism in media.

EMAC – ETHICAL MEDIA FOR ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP is a transeuropean media project about training for journalists. It is funded by the ERASMUS+ programme of the European Union. The most important learning outcomes we aim at with our training elements are:

SENSIBILISATION FOR THE SOURCES AND PREMISES OF MEDIA PRODUCTS: Truth isn’t truth at all. Being honest while producing media content and depicting the facts best of one’s knowledge and belief may not be enough to produce “true” content. Every author and every editor has personal bias, premises, views of the world. We are all affected by our family and social backgrounds, our society and context, our language and political or religious believes. We can not change that and neither should we, but it’s vitally important for anyone in journalism to be permanently aware of these restrictions.
To instill that heightened awareness of self in the learners is one of the main objectives of this training course as it is in media literacy training in general.

SPECIFIC TOOLS DIRECTED AT HELPING JOURNALISTS ARGUE AGAINST FALSE PREMISES, HATE SPEECH ELEMENTS IN MEDIA PRODUCTS AND WORK MORE INCLUSIVELY TOWARDS ANY MINORITY GROUPS: The second objective of this project is to build tools for the training course, that specifically help the learners to use this awareness in their journalistic work.
Recognising false premises (about an event or a group of people, etc) and disrespectful or even misanthropic language is the first step. We aim to actually develop exercises countering such media output in an appropriate way, with thoughtful argument. We want to enable learners to counter those articles or features without resorting to just take the other side and getting caught in the populist trap by using the same conversational techniques and in a way reinforcing exactly the biased and prejudicial way of communicating they were aiming to counter.