Global Media Forum workshop to explore applying community-building practices

By Jennifer Neutel

‘We think that local information creation needs to be redefined at a very fundamental level’

Chuck Peters is co-facilitating a June 30 workshop at The Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum on applying community-building practices to a news media company that will take a different approach.

The workshop Peters is involved in will have participants experience what it is like to create information differently through working deeply together in small groups for 45 minutes to an hour. In an interview a week before the June 30 to July 2 event in Bonn, Germany, Peters says it would be a shame to not take the opportunity for the workshop to try an experiment with people from all over the world.

Chuck Peters
Chuck Peters

Peters, CEO and president at The Gazette Company, took part in a pre-workshop planning teleconference last week where he found out forum participants are used to hearing from experts on stage. The workshop his team is planning will have “no sage from the stage,” he says.

In 2006, Peters says conversations led to an assumption that The Gazette Company’s basic function didn’t need to change, rather there was a need to explore distribution in different formats. Since then, the need to do things differently is becoming clearer, Peters says.

Now the Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based media company is experimenting with how a community can create information that it finds meaningful.

While this concept is difficult to explain in a 90-minute workshop, an immersive and personal experience might do the trick.

“We think that local information creation needs to be redefined at a very fundamental level. We are hoping to have the participants experience a different way of creating information — not just talk about it,” Peters says.

Peters says he looks forward to seeing what kind of interest there is globally in fundamentally changing the methodology of a media company. He also hopes to connect with and learn from people who are in different circumstances.

This is Peters first time attending the Global Media Forum. This year’s theme is From Information to Participation – Challenges for the Media. Learn more at

— The Gazette Company’s We Create Here effort is one of three pilot sites participating in the ASNE/Journalism That Matters partnership exploring how and why news organizations are engaging with their communities. This story is written by Axiom News


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