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BarCamp NewsInnovation Chicago is one of the regional editions of BarCamp NewsInnovation. The Chicago meetup will be Saturday, Feb. 21, at the Medill School of Journalism newsroom in downtown Chicago at 210 Clark Street. 


Please take a few moments to register for this event. Space is limited.

Event details 

When: Sat. Feb. 21, 2009

Where: Medill School of Journalism newsroom, 210 Clark St., downtown Chicago.  


Join this group for a one-day un-conference to experience the creativity and energy that occurs when technologist, programmers, web developers, designers, hackers and information architects teams to do cool stuff with journliasts, entrepreneurs, tech business dudes, students, professors and others with interest in news and information. 

This ad hoc event will be a place to not only talk about how technology is influencing journalism, but participants will be given the opportunity to brainstorm an idea and hack it out by the end of the afternoon. 

The idea behind BarCamp NewsInnovation is to get energetic, tech-savvy, open-minded individuals who embrace the chaos in the media industry because the ability to do really cool things still exists. 

The nature of a barcamp is to share ideas, expand thinking and creativity and prototype or demonstrate something, and the same will be true for BarCamp NewsInnovation.


Interested in sponsoring? Please contact one of the planners if you or your company wants to pay for or provide something like breakfast, lunch, t-shirts, or raffle prizes. 



  • Morning
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon
  • Evening/Party

Proposed Sessions  

  • Business models for news/journalism (Rich Gordon volunteers to lead and provide some factual background)
  • Allan Spale: Using Kaleidoscope (a content management + web services system under development) for news organizations. Blog posting describing the talk content here: http://kaleidoscope-bead.blogspot.com/2009/02/how-kaleidoscope-can-benefit-content.html. I want to change my presentation focus. Since Kaleidoscope is still under development, I will focus on aspects of how a system such as Kaleidoscope could create a peer-to-peer content management system for journalists and news consumers. The focus will be mostly on data organization/distribution and accessing the data for reposting and remixing. I can give a nice demo on data scraping too :) .
  • Melissa Coulter: How Can News Orgs Be More Social? I can get the discussion started around what we've done with Quadsville.com, a local social network attached to and integrated with the Quad-City Times Web site. But I'd like to hear others' ideas on ways we can incorporate more native Web usage/behavior into our news sites. What other pieces should we have around the stories that readers would value?
  • Now that you are working with journalism and the web, what skills do you wish you had acquired? Do you wonder whether you need to learn PHP or take a writing class or something like that? Maybe we can share ideas about what we have learned that is helpful (and what isn't) for journalists and for programmer, entrepreneur types who are interested in news content, web services, etc. Barbara Iverson from Columbia College Chicago volunteers to start a discussion and to compile list of specific and general kind of skills and tips that come out of the discussion.  The weather is probably going to keep me away from barcamp.

Topics I would like to hear about 

  • How to engage technology professionals in solving the problems caused by the disruption of the traditional media industry (idea submitted by Rich Gordon, who works at the Medill School of Journalism, which has full scholarships to our journalism master's program available for programmers and software developers interested in applying their skills to the field of journalism).
  • Moderation strategies. How are you handling your trolls? (Melissa Coulter)
  • What would a completely community-centric news org look like? Is it better in today's world to own the content or the distribution? What free tools provide the most value in news orgs? Is it better to have well defined niches first and aggregate up to a portal second or vice versa? What is the model in opening content to an API (like the NYTimes keeps rolling out)? - Nick Peters





  • add yourself if you're willing to help set up / clean up / handle [projector/network/food/spiritual/etc] issues during the event...
  • Alison Sherwood - asherwood [@] journalsentinel [.] com; http://jsonline.com/blogs/postcollegecook; assuming I can attend, I'd be happy to help out however I can. I'm in Milwaukee but hey that's just another suburb of Chicago, right? (I kid. Milwaukee rocks.)
  • Michael McCune mjmccune AT gmail DOT com, twitter.com/mmccune - HD camcorder and a tripod. I will be recording all sessions
  • Allan Spale - allan DOT spale AT my-kaleidoscope DOT org : miscellaneous help where needed; I have some low-end wireless audio equipment to complement the video gear. I use it with my video work. Idea: Maybe we could broadcast the event on http://www.ustream.tv.  I will not be bringing my audio equipment since no one has specifically made plans to record anything. 


Participants (aka Campers)  


Task List 

(please cross out when it's done)




Projector, White Boards









Tables and chairs




For those taking the train, it is recommended to take the Brown Line to Adams/Wabash or the Red Line to Monroe (though due to construction, the exit to this stop is trickier to locate). If driving, participants can park their cars at InterPark at 326 South Wells or 329 South Franklin (these are connected). They have a weekend special of $18.00 for 24 hours.  For more information, call (312) 966-3100. 


Tags for twitter, flickr, delicious, ma.gnolia, technorati etc. 

Please use the tag #newsinnovation for content related to this event. 

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