Citizen Journalism as a New Media Tool to Deliver Voices

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Citizen Journalism as a New Media Tool to Deliver Voices

Azerbaijan
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

About You
Location
Project Street Address

S.S. Axundov street

Project City

Baku

Project Province/State
Project Postal/Zip Code

AZ1116

Project Country
Your idea
Will you launch your idea as a business or non-profit?

Non-Profit

Web site (url)
Innovation
What is your idea? What makes it innovative? Why is it important?

The project intends to create a website with online media tools and blogging services free to be read and contributed by the users and readers who wish to test themselves as journalists, who can put up online open letters, everyday concerns, bribery facts, demanding responsibility from the elected MPs, addressing them with open letters, put up everyday concerns, publish online photos of traffic policy bribing drivers, video or photo municipalities, executive powers illegally selling lands, courts passing unjust rulings and much more. The ideas develops the participatory journalism, where from all the corners throughout Azerbaijan, citizens act as journalists and calls the policy-makers, officials, bureaucrats to responsibility.
In contemporary journalism gate keepings are done at every level in name of editorial reviews, and premium membership. But citizen journalism removes all such gate keepings from journalism because in knowledge society every citizen is a torch carrier of information. In true spirit lesser gate keeping will be the guarantee of high valued citizen journalism. It's also innovative and powerful tool for common citizens to deliver their shares in shaping knowledge based society in or around them in Azerbaijan.
Mostly citizens do not feel like using blogs (due to unawareness), forums, and other internet tools to deliver messages. It is important that citizens know the power of blogging for solutions at thier communities. Each separate bogging for each region will really involve the citizens from that particular region to discuss how local governments solve peoples’ problems, what bodies of the local government are mostly corrupted, which are the priority problems to be solved in the first place, etc. As far as the interests of the local government representatives, municipalities, teachers, other professions concerned, they will also log in and look at the comments and letters left by the users.

Impact
What will be the impact of your idea?

The project is going to have a greatest impact on development of the participatory journalism, which in its turn plays a role for the development and promotion of journalism in Azerbaijan, promote democratic development, and ensure the free expression of idea. It’s going to make citizens write freely and be independent in what they write and say, rather than having everything filtered through the views of a small group of reporters and editors.
The project team thinks that a better online community newspaper having thousands of readers who serve as the eyes and ears for the project, can lead to better news coverage overall and ideally, a more informed public.
The type of news being published by citizens from highly personalized content, to groundbreaking news stories or pictures and video, as well as information neglected by mainstream media is going to raise responsibility and accountability, forcing the elected officials and bureaucrats listen to citizen voices.

People: We are looking for ideas from people who can make them happen.

The team consists of 3 staff and 5 volunteers, two web masters, one moderator and volunteers to advertise the site. The interactive website is built and ad banners are exchanged or placed on leading community, news sites.
Project team at present works on the improvement of climate change website in local Azerbaijani language. The idea is to make it interactive and involve the youth into the protection of the planet.
Digital Development with the same team implemented a project called count to 5! campaign with funding from the US Embassy in Azerbaijan and involved the young voters into 2008 Presidential elections in Azerbaijan.
Digital Development was a winner of nGomobile competetion in 2008; one laptop from HP, 1000 USD, two Nokia phones from NOKIA company, USA.

Sustainability
How much will it cost to launch your idea?

Launching the idea costs 4000 USD and running it for 6 months period needs an additional 5000 USD, the period within which the project team thinks it can make some money to sustain the project. The project team thinks that it will be one of the attended sites; as a result it will bring advertisements. The money saved from the advertisements on the site will serve the sustainability. At the moment we work with the donors to bring more funds. At the moment we have raised 1500 USD from the physical persons and hopefully in a month or two we shall collect all the needed money. Some donors are also considering the proposal.