Assessing Impact of Media

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It took a group of heartbroken teenagers to move the needle on gun violence. Here’s how they did it.

In the month since the school shootingat Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., which left 17 dead and numerous others wounded, the student leaders of the #NeverAgain movement have been able to move the needle on gun issues—even as many adults had thrown up their hands on the issues long ago. What’s more, the students’ impact has been significant:

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Why measuring media’s impact matters

Editor’s note: In November 2017, Science magazine published the results of a multi-year study—funded primarily by Voqal, a national collaboration of EBS licensees that work to advance social equity—in which 48 small media outlets were recruited to write articles on specific subjects on randomly assigned dates. Harvard Professor Gary King and his team wanted to better understand the impact of journalism on the national conversation. The researchers found that news by small- to medium-sized outlets can have a significant impact on how Americans discuss issues. Here, Voqal’s founder, John Schwartz, discusses why Voqal took this research on and what it means for the philanthropic community. Read more

Celebrating the impact of investigative storytelling at the Double Exposure Film Festival

By Double Exposure Investigative Film Festival

Next week, Double Exposure (DX), a project of the news organization 100Reporters, will open its doors to celebrate the newest documentary films inspired by investigative instinct, combining public screenings with a professional symposium for journalists and visual storytellers.

Media Impact Funders members receive a special 15% off discount on passes with the code DX17IMF. Register now while passes last.

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The Fledgling Fund offers insights on funding virtual reality

Editor’s note: Earlier this month, Media Impact Funders brought funders together at Philanthropy New York with organizers and presenters from the first VR for Change summit to explore how immersive platforms offer new ways to engage and mobilize users around social issues.

Because this is a new and quickly evolving medium, attendees had many questions. The lively conversation ranged across definitions of new technologies, ways to match funders’ goals to VR productions, emerging research on impact, and the costs of supporting such projects as platforms continue to roll out.

Diana Barrett of the Fledgling Fund has thought through many of these questions in her own practice. In this post adapted from a piece published in the online publication Immerse, she shares what she’s learned about the impact of VR, and how Fledgling chooses the projects they support. 

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How to use our media impact assessment resources, Part II

Earlier this year, we discussed the ways in which we’ll be continuing to improve our Assessing the Impact of Media (AIM) Initiative throughout 2017, and highlighted how we’ve been thinking about media impact and strategy so far. Since our subscriber list for the AIM newsletter has more than doubled in the past year, we wanted to take a moment to orient newcomers to this important part of our work. So, here’s a quick update on our recent progress, plus an FAQ on how to make the most of the AIM tools and resources we collect.

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Messaging, misinformation and movements: Impact takeaways from the Frank conference

Last month, we headed down to Gainesville, Fla., for the annual Frank gathering of people who use communications to drive social change. This year, the conference felt more necessary than ever. Many of us in the social-change sector are looking for answers to how we continue our work in a culture that not only rejects facts and science, but one that also—thanks to sophisticated social media algorithms that tailor content specifically to our interests and the echo chambers that result—seemingly cannot distinguish between real information, unintentional misinformation and intentional disinformation.

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What muddled podcast metrics reveal about the challenges of assessing new media markets

By Jessica Clark and Sarah Lutman

Podcasting is burgeoning, as we document in a new report we wrote for the Knight Foundation, From Airwaves to Earbuds: Lessons from Knight Investments in Digital Audio and Podcasting. Digital distribution options are allowing media makers to bypass traditional radio broadcasters to reach listeners directly through a growing number of apps and non-broadcast networks. However, tracking the impact of these efforts is still a tough prospect—one that mirrors the challenges faced by many makers who create content for emerging platforms.

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Read our most recent newsletters:

MIF Monthly newsletter: September/October 2017

Assessing Impact of Media (AIM) monthly newsletter: November 2017

Read previous monthly newsletters here.

Read previous AIM newsletters here.

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