ONA and also 'Storytelling and New Technology' Conferences

Later this week, we’ll be attending two online journalism conferences: The Online News Association‘s annual conference and a Storytelling and New Technology conference at the Medill School of Journalism, both events held in the Chicago suburb of Evanston.

    The ONA is an association of professional online journalists, so their annual conference — held at the Omni Orrington Hotel in Orrington, Illinois, on Friday afternoon and all day Saturday — will focus on that tradecraft. Tribune Publishing Company President Jack Fuller will give its opening keynote. Then three concurrent panels will be held on Engaging readers with interactivity, What’s law got to do with it (legal issues confronting online journalists); and Working together across mediums. An evening tour of Tribune Interactive will close the first day.

    Saturday will start with three more concurrent panels: Covering war in a digital desert, Strategies for growing our audience, and Best of the best: Lessons from OJA finalists (finalists in the ONA’s Online Journalism Awards contest discuss how they produced their work). Blogger and pundit Andrew Sullivan will then give a keynote speech. And three more concurrent panels will follow: Flogging the blogs: Debating best practices, How technology will change news (which our Vin Crosbie will be moderating), and another session on Best of the best: Lessons from OJA finalists. The conference will then end with a panel on Back to the Future, which will be a ‘reality check’ about whether or not online journalism has met its promises made during the 1990s abd where it is going from here. That evening, the 4th Annual Online Journalism Awards will be held.

    On Sunday, Professor Brian Dennis of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism New Media faculty (who’s a panelist on the ONA’s ‘How technology will change news panel), will be hosting a symposium on Storytelling and New Technology, in the Forum of Medill’s McCormick Tribune Center. It will feature three consecutive sessions: One on Consumer Controlled Channels, which will be about the technological, commercial, and social issues related to media vehicles that consumers can customize and control for their own uses; Case Studies in New Media Education for the academics attending this symposium and the ONA conference; and Digital Images: The Next Frontier (also with our Vin Crosbie as a panelist).

We’ll be reporting here live from both the ONA conference and the Medill symposium this weekend.